Cycling Meteorologist?

I recently moved across the country and started joining group rides out of different LBS. Give it’s Spring, the weather is always a hot topic. Pre-ride there is always lively discussion about the rain possibilities during the ride. Just yesterday I heard, “I checked the weather reports and radars and we should be good for a 3 hour window.”

Maybe a question for Coach Chad, but I’ll open it the forum…

Could there be a correlation or possible causation that makes cyclists turn into meteorologist? Or possibly people with a natural attraction to meteorology becoming cyclists??

1 Like

Hikers, climbers, skiers etc too or just cyclists?

Living on a wind swept rock means I check the forecast a lot for my riding window, definitely cycling leads to watching the weather, or risk facing riding home into 40 mph winds

Location matters too… in Oklahoma meteorology is or at least was taught early in life in elementary school given our spring time weather. Our local news stations also have better equipment than most nationwide to include probably the NWS in some places. So it really is just part of the culture.

I can’t offer much to this topic, but I do have a keen cyclist friend who was always looking at weather graphics and charts. So maybe you’re on to something

IMO Any cyclist worth his salt should be an amateur meteorologist…I check weather multiple times per day.

Why? For example…

  • what to wear
  • I’ll adjust my training around it…eg take recovery day when the weather is bad,
  • route planning, I usually always come home with a tailwind
  • for races you need to know what how it could affect the race, what to wear…

Mind you I am an old school cyclist in many regards…perhaps this is not so common these days!


When it comes to meteorology, cycling has nothing on groups like surfers or sailors whose sport is only possible if certain weather conditions occur. Imagine if the roads didn’t exist unless the wind blew from a certain direction for a certain length of time or if the perfect winds occured, the roads would be made smoother and more fun. That’s when people really start to follow the weather.

1 Like

I’m British so talking about the weather is genetically imprinted on me and my compatriots. In fact, my colleagues from around the world who settle here soon pick it up!


Agreed - I did some competitive sailing in my youth. Cyclists have nothing on sailors in the weather department. Cyclists might check the weather before a ride, mostly for comforts sake. Short term weather data and forecasting is so critical in racing sailboats that once a racing sailboat is big enough to have an electrical system, the boat will have its own mini weather station instruments on board and sailors know how to use them. Once on the move, most cyclists struggle to identify between a cross wind vs a head wind. Sailors play 2-3 degree wind shifts for advantage.

I do much the same thing, whether for training rides or for planning for a weekend race.

Spring time in Texas can be downright dangerous (possible tornadoes and golf ball sized hail in the forecast for tomorrow, for ex.) so it’s really a good idea to pay attention to the weather if you value your life. :slight_smile:

Re sailing I don’t doubt that’s another level but that doesn’t mean cyclist shouldn’t take a keen interest. Personally I live in a mountainous area and while you won’t die if you get it wrong you can still end up in a very unpleasant situation if you Get caught out

Sounds like you’re a good meteorologist to go KOM hunting with :wink:

1 Like