Best time of year to visit back east / north?

jennJuly 24, 2003

Hello, this if my first visit to this forum!

We are planning a road trip around the U.S. next year. We'll drive across the south through Texas to Florida, up the eastern coast to the northeast (probably as far as Maine), then back across the midwest through Ohio and Illinois, probably up to Montana, down through Wyoming, Colorado, and back home to southern California. We plan to take about a month to make the trip.

We're planning to take the trip in the spring or early summer next year, and we're wondering which months are best in terms of weather. Would May/June be the best time overall? We'd prefer to avoid the south during the hotter months due to the humidity, but we don't want to get caught in unexpected snow in the north in spring either.

What do you suggest?


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As a native New Englander I have to say that summer and September/October are the months to come here. May and June can be pretty heavy in the bug department if you're into seeing national forests/parks (mosquitos and black flies), but the weather is great. Summer is FABULOUS, that's why everyone comes here and ditto mid/late Sep't. and early October. Foliage season is stunning and there is a lot of traffic, esp. on weekends. Do your touring mid-week and carefully plan your routes. I recommend the DeLorme Gazeteers; in depth maps of the states with back roads nicely marked.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2003 at 7:32PM
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You are covering a lot of area so the weather issues will be dramatically different in various regions. It sounds like a wonderful trip. To me, the biggest advantage for May and early June would be before families are hitting the road for summer vacation. Even in wide open spaces like across Ohio On I 70, there can be a lot of traffic.

Traveling through the southeast & mid Atlantic in spring would be beautiful - dogwoods, azaleas, rhodies.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2003 at 8:11AM
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Thank you for your very helpful comments.

Yes, seeing the fall colors in September/October would be wonderful. But since we are covering so many regions of the country the weather issue is probably the main concern -- there could already be snow in some areas at that time of the year. And I really want to avoid the heat & humidity in the summer.

It seems that in terms of weather, May/June would be best to avoid the weather extremes in some parts of the country.

Thanks again for your suggestions, I'll keep them in mind.


    Bookmark   July 25, 2003 at 11:04AM
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We live in So. California and visit the east coast several times a year. The south can be quite hot even in May and last year there was quite a heat wave in Boston in mid September - so sometimes the weather is difficult to figure out. Generally, Spring and Fall and the best times to visit the East Coast, especially the south. Last year we were in New England from late September to the middle of October - very pleasant weather in Cape Code, Nantucket, Boston, Newport, etc. But the further north we went, the cooler it was - Vermont and Maine were quite chilly in the evenings and early mornings - even had frost in Vermont in early October. I suggest taking a jacket as well as lightweight clothing if you plan to travel in the Fall or Spring because you probably will experience a range of weather conditions which actually, is kind of fun.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2003 at 2:29AM
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Thanks Cattknap. I'll keep that in mind. In doing the research, I'm learning that the temps are pretty unpredictable.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2003 at 10:59AM
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