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Discussion Starter #1
I am planning a tour of southern Utah and northern Arizona. I don't know the best time of year to go.

I naturally want to avoid the heat of the summer. I passed through Moab in August one year and stopped for lunch and the temperature was 103. Believe me, I get enough of that here in the DFW area.

So, I don't know whether spring or fall is best for that area. I know that here in the spring we have some fairly violent thunderstorms, which I would also want to avoid if they happen out there.

So if anyone can help it will be greatly appreciated.
 

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I've been through southern Utah in early to mid June twice with good weather. The first trip was 2009 during the 2nd week of June. The daytime highs were in the mid to low 80's depending on location and elevation. I experienced no rain to speak of.

The last trip was this past June. About the same time of the month. The temps were a little cooler and once again no rain.

Really enjoyed both trips.

I cannot comment on the weather during the Fall. Have not done that.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I've been through southern Utah in early to mid June twice with good weather. The first trip was 2009 during the 2nd week of June. The daytime highs were in the mid to low 80's depending on location and elevation. I experienced no rain to speak of.

The last trip was this past June. About the same time of the month. The temps were a little cooler and once again no rain.

Really enjoyed both trips.

I cannot comment on the weather during the Fall. Have not done that.
Thanks, do you think mid-May would be too cold?
 

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I was there last year in early June. It was 121 degrees at lower elevations and 97 degrees in Zion Nat Park.

Not normal I know, but... Holy crap it was hot!
 

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Thanks, do you think mid-May would be too cold?
It may be if you're riding UT 12 or going to Bryce Canyon, and there's a possibility of snow then also. Bring your snivel gear just in case.
 

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If the north rim of the Grand Canyon is a goal, it doesn't open til May 15th and I think it closes on October 15th generally. May is generally a real good month in Arizona and Utah. April is better. In the fall, late October and into November is generally pretty safe. I've done all of Arizona and Southern Utah in January, it just depends on the weather at that time.
 

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September...........

Less traffic, less people and less precipitation.

Mark
 

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I'm with Ki-speed. We are from the Pacific NW, and we do all our touring in Sept (other than Alaska!). Every state that we've visited in Sept has been great. We've ridden across the U.S. on Hwy 80 in Sept, and all those states were perfect weather too.
 

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Go to the City Data website, and look up any of the towns you're going through... notice the charts showing typical weather.
http://www.city-data.com/



ex: Torrey UT





 

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I have done Mid May several times. It's been a bit cold on one trip, but manageable. I think it's a great time. Snow is always a risk, but not a huge risk. I grew up in Utah and I would not wory that much about the weather. Make sure you do have a warm and windproof layer and some cold weather gloves, but beyond that I would not be concerned.
 

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I like early to mid-Fall. Late September to the entire month of October would be a delight, for ambient air temperature, goodly weather patterns and visual enjoyment. Most of the roadways will be empty, thanks to schools being in session and parents are still transitioning from summer vacation to the mindset of their work cycle. I also believe most of the vacationing crowds will be gone, for these same reasons.

- David
 

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I love southern Utah and northern Arizona in late-April through May and in late-September through October.

Keep in mind that because of the elevation variations you can have really hot weather one day and it could be snowing the next. A few years ago in mid-May we had 102 deg temps in central Utah and two days later we had snow coming down on us in the Cedar Breaks area, then again at the North Rim and South Rim. All part of the adventure! I'd stay away from June-August -- just too hot!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for all of the suggestions, guys. Sorry for the 'no response' for the last couple of weeks. We've been moving and I just found my laptop.

Looks like the consensus is late September for best temps and weather. I'll start planning on it now and make a quick run out to Ruidoso this October since I can't get away this fall for a long trip.
 
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