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  1. #1
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    CA coast in Feb.

    i would like to ride the coast from san fran to sandiego starting around feb 3rd. ideally i would head east from sandiego and head for lee's ferry on the colorado in arizona, try to be there by mar 10. any feeedback on coast weather and or desert riding at that time of year.

  2. #2
    pierced member
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    Weather should be temperate enough during the day, with low temps at night, especially by the sea as cool air comes ashore. Be prepared with full rain gear, a warm sleeping bag and a decent waterproof tent and you should be fine. The good part is most campsites should be fairly empty, and there are hike and bike camps all the way down. I did the same ride in April of last year and it was very decent, if not perfect, but Feb should be a lot wetter. I love that ride...
    Go big.

  3. #3
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    I live in San Diego the weather should be ok it might be a little cool in the morning but the afternoon temps are nice. As for inland it will be nice during the day but really cold at night in the desert.

  4. #4
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    Boy, its a risk. You could get lucky and have a beautiful ride. Or you could get hit with a series of storms. Personally I would never do it at that time (The weather and the days are short). I live just south of San Francisco and February and March can be very wet. Not trying to be a naysayer... I just want you to know what your getting into. The leg from San Diego to Lee's Ferry would probably have better weather. Sounds like you have a Grand Canyon River run in line (I am on the waiting list).
    Good Luck
    Rob

  5. #5
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    yeah it seems like i'm hearing more warning than encouragement. how long is the trip from sf to san diego generally speaking? i'm wondering if going for it with the intention of laying over for a couple of days here and there might work out. sounds like it could be wet for days on end though-which i'm not totally discouraged by. i guess the temp combined with being wet could be a bummer too. i do have a river trip in line! not my permit-a friends, but i thought that a tour leading up to a 21 day river trip would do me right!!

    thanks-Bill

  6. #6
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    VTBiker, don't be discouraged. My wife and I biked from San Francisco to Los Angeles in February and had a great time. Camping seems like it could be hard during the summer (lots of "no camping" signs), but it's not a problem at that time of year because there are so few people around. We lucked out in 2000 as the road was washed out near Lucia (?). Bikes and pedestrians could get there through but not cars. There was very little traffic. One of the road construction guys said he'd love to do that ride when the road was closed but not at any other time!
    In January we biked from the Coachella Valley to San Diego and north to Los Angeles over a 5000 (?) ft pass. There was snow on the pass, but it was 80F in the Coachella Valley. Between San Diego and Lee's Ferry you should expect the temperature to vary with elevation. In November 1999 we biked from Escalante, Utah to Las Vegas and had fine weather since we made an effort to camp low - not at the top of the 8000 (?) ft passes. You'll have long distances between San Diego and Lee's Ferry without water - much better to do that ride in winter than summer.
    Have a great trip. Wish I was going.

  7. #7
    pierced member
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    I second BryanKeith. What happened to adventure? I thought that was the point of being a cycle tourer.
    Go big.

  8. #8
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    To repeat what was said above it is a hit or miss kind of thing. I live in Ventura County and last year there was no rain in February, in fact I don't think we had rain all winter. But right now it has been raining hard for the last two days. A lot more rain this year than last, in fact right now I'm checking the LA times, Ventura has had more than twice the amount of rain this year than last, LA three times more this year and Santa Ana 5 times more.

    Have a good trip

  9. #9
    Nut Job jedi_rider's Avatar
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    I gotta hand it to all you tourers! You're a brave bunch. During my training rides, along the San Diego coast an inland valleys, I run into your kinsmen all the time. I admire the way you all pack and lug your gear around---seriously.

    From time to time, they wave and ask me for directions which I'm always happy to give.

    Maybe when I get over this "racing" phase of my life, I'll start to tour---but I don't see that happening for years yet.
    Any time I'm going up a hill, I know I'm headed in the right direction.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jedi_rider
    I gotta hand it to all you tourers! You're a brave bunch. During my training rides, along the San Diego coast an inland valleys, I run into your kinsmen all the time. I admire the way you all pack and lug your gear around---seriously.
    Yea! Yes, we do rock, don't we? You can join our club when you feel up to it...
    Go big.

  11. #11
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    I'll add a little more since rain has been mentioned as quite a menace. Indeed full days of hard rain are no fun for cycle touring in my opinion. During my February trip from SF to LA we had only one of those days, the day we rode into LA. Normally we would have spent a day like that in the tent (or in a library, pub, whatever), but we had made plans to spend that night with some friends in LA. It was the only night we had such plans - usually we camped, but we thought that could get tricky in LA.

    It did rain (almost?) every day from SF to LA, but usually only at night. Some days we'd camp early because it would start to rain in the afternoon. Other days we left camp late because it was still raining in the morning. We really rode in the rain very little. It was usually cloudy, but I have great memories of the sun shining between the clouds. In case all this isn't clear: have a great trip and bring raingear!

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