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If this should be in regional rides just yell at me.

Good possibility I'm moving to MN, White Bear Lake specifically. Of the reasons not to go, lack of saddle time is high on the list. You know, snow and all. AND... I'm a poosy in the cold; I don't have the fortitude to ride in the extreme cold like maybe some of you natives. Rain I don' t mind, just cold. Questions from some objective folks...

How long is the riding season actually?
How much of the year is generally below 50F ? 60F?
Does it ever break 90degrees? (I love that sheet ;D )
How much snow, rain, etc. during winter & spring?

I'll need some lessons on winterizing too I guess, if I decide to go.
All feedback appreciated - thanks in advance! T.
 

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Don't go! While I have not lived there, I have spent a considerable amount of time in the St. Paul area for work during the winter months and it is COLD!!! In fact, it is so cold for so long that they have constructed elevated and underground enclosed pedestrian walkways between the buildings. The riding season is compressed and because of those 10,000 lakes the bugs are out in force at night during the summer. Me, no way no how. I barely coping with this crappy Chicago wheather.

Jonesy
 

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I move to Minneapolis area last June.

Winters are all that and more :) Actually, for the past few
years south of Minnesota hasn't been getting much snow -
less them Michigan.

Summers are great - lots of sun, not too hot, mostly mid 80's
I think. For riding there are a few decent roads around the twin
area, but most of the good rides are in Wisconsin and south
east part of the state. There are group rides with 10+ people
almost every weekend.
 
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jonesy said:
Don't go!  While I have not lived there, I have spent a considerable amount of time in the St. Paul area for work during the winter months and it is COLD!!!  In fact, it is so cold for so long that they have constructed elevated and underground enclosed pedestrian walkways between the buildings.   The riding season is compressed and because of those 10,000 lakes the bugs are out in force at night during the summer.  Me, no way no how.  I barely coping with this crappy Chicago wheather.

Jonesy
Egh- Chicago - I lived there for 1 year. Never again.
 

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I hear you on the Chicago thing. Just three more years and the house is paid-off then I'm shopping for a vacation home that will some day become my retirement place. I plan on heading south somewhere around Tennessee, Georgia or Carolinas.

Jonesy
 

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newton-san,


I lived in MN (north metro of the Twin Cities) for 35 years, just recently moved to Phoenix last October. Kind of an itch I had to scratch, like the desert, dry air, riding in the wintertime, etc. While it's great to ride in the winter time and all, I will be moving back to MN as soon as I can. Part of that is due to family/friends, part familiarity, and here's the moto part:


In the southwest, peak riding time is during the winter when daylight length is shortest. In the north, peak riding time is during the summer, when daylight is longest.

The riding season in MN is roughly May through early October; my riding season up there is usually April through late October or early November (until permanent snow).

It does break 90 F quite often in July and August; it's a much different heat than that you see in TX or AZ. Start mixing in 70-80% humidity, and those upper 80's and 90's can get brutal unless you're moving.

Winters are long, dark, and harsh, I won't b.s. you. However, over the last 5-10 years, winters have gotten noticeably milder (no joke, ask any long time resident).

There are a ton of roads along the eastern third of MN; the Great River Road along the Mississippi, North Shore Drive along Lake Superior, and some other scenic roads are destination areas in and of themselves. Unlike what I've found in Phoenix, there are enough roads that you can take many different routes to arrive at a destination a hundred miles away and spend entire weekends exploring, as opposed to a few high traffic volume freeways that funnel traffic to relatively few destinations that everyone goes to.

You are also an hour away from the famed alphabet roads and other routes in Wisconsin.

Obviously, there are no mountains in MN, but some of the elevation changes along the river valleys, bluff country (SE MN), and along the North Shore are breathtaking; MN offers fantastic scenic riding, only mediocre at best twisty/adrenaline riding.

For me, riding in MN is awesome, just too short of a season.


For more city info: http://www.city-data.com/




If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask away or pm me. HTH...
 

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Minnesota is like the un-official world capitol of ice-fishing. Not to mention snowmobiling. If you've never ridden a bad-ass snowmobile before, you're missing out. Totally ethereal in acceleration. Hope that helps.
Texas kicking you out, or what ? ;D
 

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I love it here. I am actually from White Bear Lake but now live in Minneapolis. White Bear Lake is relatively close to the St Croix river valley. Great riding out there and really all over around here. We may not have mountains but we have many, many, many lakes which make for some very twisty roads and great views. We also have a great school system, great parks, great people and one of the strongest local music scenes in the mid-west. I also lived in Tempe AZ when I was in college and I would pick living with winter for a few months over living in that cesspool any time. The riding community is very strong here as well. There are a couple of cool cycle hang outs in the twin cities and huge meetups every month in Uptown Minneapolis. I really can't think of a better place to live really. You can let the winter get you down or you can pick up an old cycle and fix it up in your garage. Then when the sun comes out you'll have the coolest bike in town. I actully was riding in February last year. If you want any more details drop an email.


Corey.
 

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Alright already, don't listen to anyone who hasn't lived there.  I grew up on the south side of the cities.  Lots of great riding, best roads, like stated earlier are along the river both north and south of the cities.  For the best roads in mn check out the se corner.  Hwy 60 from wabasha to zumbro falls is the best riding stretch in the state, for scenery hwy 61 along the river and hwy 16 from la cresent to nearly harmony.  Many, many other trails.  Check out the other side of the river as well, many untouched roads in wi.
 

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+1 on NOT listening to anyone who has never lived here.  I grew up in Duluth (home of Aerostich), and now live in a suburb of Minneapolis.  Duluth will always be my home (and fiance's) and we hope to make it back up there in the next 10 years.  MUCH more opportunity here than in Duluth, unfortunately.  It is not the Arctic here, nor has it ever been.  Cold, it can be, but the "killer" snow storms  ::) of the past have passed...winters have been pretty mild.  The riding season is shorter than the south, we usually start around April/May and ride into November.  We took a great trip up near Canada this October and it was in the 70's!  And we had some rides this last summer when it was around 100 (much rather ride in the cold).

Bottom line...there is some great riding here, just connect with the right people and you will find the good rides, yes it's cold, but not deathly cold, it is a beautiful state with tons to do and explore (if you like the outdoors), and don't forget the "minnesota nice"  ;)

One of the big reasons why I would never leave is that we have a distinct change of seasons, which I would miss if I ever moved somewhere warm, spring and fall are favorites, oh, that and family/friends.

Hope that helps a little.  If you're used the year 'round warm, it may not be for you, but our winters are not THAT bad.  ;)

Tami
 

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jonesy said:
I barely coping with this crappy Chicago wheather.
What are you talking about? This has been the warmest winter ever in my 30 years in the upper midwest!

Personally, when I lived in the Twin Cities I found it to be not so cold temperature-wise as it was cold wind-chill-wise. The wind in winter never stops. Ever. Summers I found to be incredibly muggy as it is very much a tree city and there is no large body of water such as a great lake to regulate and cool the climate. But I'd say you'll easily be riding your bike April through October without any problem.

And not to hate but I found the "Minnesota Nice" thing to be a bit of a fallacy. Chicagoans are much nicer and also have a lot more fun. ;D
 

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Minneapolis is great for motorcycles! There was any article in on the moto mags a few months ago and minneapolis was in the top 10 for bikes. There are plenty of good places to ride, good shops(I work at one) and plenty of cycle hang outs. Pm me if you have any questions.
 

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Yes move there riding all year is such a hassel,it was 75 in Ca. today just devalues your bike w/all the miles on it not to mention tire cost,and Febuary sears point track days.Moving to icevill will save you a bundle. ;D
 

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butterboy said:
Yes move there riding all year is such a hassel,it was 75 in Ca. today just devalues your bike w/all the miles on it not to mention tire cost,and Febuary sears point track days.Moving to icevill will save you a bundle. ;D

You say that tongue-in-cheek, but there's a tiny nugget of truth buried in there:


When it's nice out all the time and you can ride whenever you want, riding can become blase. A part year riding season tends to make you more passionate about riding and take advantage of every opportunity of fair weather during the season....
 

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There's plenty of good riding in the bluffs south of the cities. Not to mention southwestern wisconsin has some of the best riding in the mid-west. When we want better than what Wisconsin has to offer, we head to Arkansaw or the Gap.
 

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I've lived up here in ND all my life, and I think it'd be tough to give up the changing seasons too. The secret to winter survival is having a plan.....like a project bike if you enjoy tinkering, or some other hobby that can occupy your time while the bike is in hibernation.

Winter can't be all bad......ask Peter Egan. He moved back to Wisconsin after several years in California. I enjoy all his stories about the rides he's been on, the places he's been, etc., but I also enjoy the bits he's written about how he occupies his time in the off-season. There are Triumphs to restore, (if you have a desire to actually get something accomplished), or.....you can sit out in the workshop/garage and do silly, unnecessary fiddling.....just 'cause you can.

He wrote one column about the four bikes he (at the time) had in his workshop. He noticed that each one of them had something in particular about its appearance that appealed to him when viewed from a certain angle. Sooooo.....he spent a lazy winters' day arranging his bikes n a manner so as to let each one's standout feature be highlighted. Then, he sat back on his workshop stool with a cup of his favorite coffee......and just looked at them. I suppose to some people that would seem silly and a total waste of time, but I have to agree with the post above about how we short-season riders seem to appreciate riding and bikes in general maybe a little more because the season is so short. Okay....maybe it's not fair to say we appreciate it more, but we are able to "stop and smell the roses" so to speak during the off-season.......and perhaps take riding less for granted as a result.

Hey.....life up here isn't for everyone, but then again nothing is for everyone. Go rent "Fargo" and pay particular attention to the scene in which William Macy's character slogs back to his car in the parking lot after being shot down during his business meeting with Wade and his accountant/business partner. It's a dreary day, work has sucked, and......to top it all off, now you've gotta scrape your windows to see just so you can friggin' go home! If you can handle that, you'll be fine. ;)

(We don't all talk like the people in the movie.....lots of us do, but not all of us. ;D)

"Prowler needs a jump Hon........"

"I'll fix you some eggs......"

"There's a front movin' in......"

"Ya......you got that right...."
 

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jonesy said:
In fact, it is so cold for so long that they have constructed elevated and underground enclosed pedestrian walkways between the buildings.
Jonesy
this is true. I just got back from the Mayo clinic in Rochester and they have tunnels and skyways that connect hotels and different hospitals. for 2 days i never put on a jacket cause I was always indoors.
 

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Others have already told you plenty about the weather, so I won't beat a dead horse.  Bottom line, yes it get cold but winters the past few years have been very mild...it's -9.3 deg F as I type this  ;D.  Now onto the important riding issue...roads in the metro (including white bear lake) generally suck.  There are some short stretches that are ok, but chances are you'd have to rail on busy residential or commercial areas to enjoy them which I'm not cool with.  To get some nice roads you will have to head about 1-1.5 hrs SSE from WBL.  If you enjoy 300+ mile days then you'll be fine.  You can easily spend an entire day hitting some really fun roads.  Given it's not the gap, but still fun.   Now if you want to be able to hop on your bike and be in the twisties in 5 minutes you won't be happy.  

Check the map below and zoom out once, White Bear is NE of St. Paul on the red outer-ring highway (694).  Once you get into the green areas there will be nice roads.  The roads near Welch ski area (SE of Miesville) are awesome, as is Hwy 60 from Zumbro Falls to Wabasha.  There are plenty of roads that you can have a blast on if you don't mind taking a day trip.  If your an outdoors person in general you'll like the twin cities.  Lots of parks, trails, dog parks, fishing, skiiking, hunting, etc to keep you busy...but yes it sucks right about now. :-\

http://www.mapquest.com/maps/map.adp?address=&city=Wabasha&state=MN&zipcode=&country=US&title=<b>Wabasha, MN US</b>&cid=lfmaplink2&name=
 

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Living here for 9 years now, love it.

Good riding is 1/2 hour away from the Twin Cities down Hwy 61...or 1/2 hour east to Stillwater, MN, and up the river. Really, 1/2 an hour is all you gotta ride to get out of the city and onto some great roads.

I actually rode this week, Monday, since we have not had really any snow. Took the bike out for hour or so. I'm in the peak cabin fever mode right now, but all in all its not that bad. By March you can usually get out a few times, then by April, usually the whole month till end of Nov or so.

Got a few nice moto hangouts, coffee shop type things, lots and lots of roads very close. Riding in the city, with traffic is what it is...prolly the same as any big city.

Twin Cites also has great culture, night life, theatres are fantastic - and we got a ton of them. Great food.

The cold makes your tougher, IMHO.

If you're moving to WBL - you're already closer to the roads.
 
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