30ºF Weather - How do I cold?


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Long story short, not used to layering and outer wear.  Due to basketball season and work, I've procrastinated to the furthest reach.  We'll be heading through UT and Chicago, IL at the start of March. 

My GF was wondering about Chicago @Bohn007

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I guess my questions for the chicago guys are:
- what do you need to wear for their 30 degree weather.
- is it safe to walk around with luggage in the loop?
- how safe is it to walk around the loop at night but before midnight?
- how easy is it to use lyft at night in the loop?
- would you recommend using a bus to get to our hotel while carrying luggage?
- would you recommend the bus system in general?  
- how safe is public transportation at night but before midnight?

 

I was just curious about cold weather layering in general.  Lows into the 30's, highs in UT will be 60ish where we will be hiking in Zion.  Will have thermals, a light running layer, fleece mid layer and a 80/60gr outer shell (will it be enough for 30ºF)?  Did I over do it?

 

I'm from Hawaii.

 

Thanks for the read and time fam!

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Hahaha, for 30ºF all you need is jeans, a t-shirt, and a jacket. 

Honestly though, it is hard for anybody to tell you how to layer. That is up to what your body is acclimated to and how well you can handle cold weather. If you are hiking you will definitely need base layers that will wick away any moisture from your body, because regardless of the temperature, you will sweat. Overkill isn't bad. Remember, you can take a layer off if you have too much on. If you are freezing cold because you didn't bring enough layers, that will suck much more than the extra weight from having too much will.

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Do not wear any cotton as your base layer,  Wear a Poly type fabric to wick moisture away from your skin.  Hypersomniac is spot on with his advice.  

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21 hours ago, miurajus said:

Long story short, not used to layering and outer wear.  Due to basketball season and work, I've procrastinated to the furthest reach.  We'll be heading through UT and Chicago, IL at the start of March. 

My GF was wondering about Chicago @Bohn007

I was just curious about cold weather layering in general.  Lows into the 30's, highs in UT will be 60ish where we will be hiking in Zion.  Will have thermals, a light running layer, fleece mid layer and a 80/60gr outer shell (will it be enough for 30ºF)?  Did I over do it?

 

I'm from Hawaii.

 

Thanks for the read and time fam!

- what do you need to wear for their 30 degree weather.
I wear a winter coat most of the time. Downtown Chicago can get windy and with the cold that isn't always fun
 
- is it safe to walk around with luggage in the loop? 
During daytime, you should be fine, although it might be avoided due to weather more than anything
 
- how safe is it to walk around the loop at night but before midnight?
I don't worry about it but i wouldn't let my wife do it unless she was with a group. 
 
- how easy is it to use lyft at night in the loop?
Lyft should not be a problem although i think Uber is more often used. 
 
- would you recommend using a bus to get to our hotel while carrying luggage?
No, Uber/Lyft to your hotel
 
- would you recommend the bus system in general?
I personally have never used the bus to get around downtown
 
- how safe is public transportation at night but before midnight?
A lot of people use it so I wouldn't worry about it overall. Like any big city, just be smart and travel with a friend
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Concur with Bohn's thoughts above. I would just Uber with your luggage, it's not that expensive and is easy to get around. If your hotel is by the L (train), then that is also a pretty easy way to get around town. Me being relatively lazy, and Uber / Lyft being cheap, drives me to just use that most of the time. The Loop / near north / near west side are all pretty safe in general. I just wouldn't head too far west or south (which there is no reason to). You should scope out http://chicago.eater.com/ to make a few dinner / lunch plans.

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Typical winter coat is all that's necessary for 30.

Fargo has been unseasonably warm again this year in February.  Haven't had any bitteryly cold days yet this year (knock on wood).  Although my dress at -20 only includes winter gloves and a stocking hat whereas at 30 neither of those 2 is necessary.  

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I live in Miami (total wimp when it comes to the cold) and spend alot of time in Chicago, probably a week a month. If it's in the 30s you're fine, but it can get really cold in Chicago really quickly....add a little wind and man, button up! Even if the forecast calls for 30s make sure you can layer up if you need. 

Chicago has some fantastic food options across all spectrums, some awesome bars, and the people/safety factor in most of the areas you'd be hanging out in as a typical tourist are as safe as any major city in the US I feel like. People are very friendly. Very nice city. Use your judgement and you're fine, the stuff you see on the news about Chicago is not something you'll feel when there, in my opinion. 

Places to smoke indoors, on the other hand....let's just say that first warm day in Chicago every spring in a welcome thing! 

Uber/lyft are as good in Chicago as any city, maybe the best. 

Enjoy! 

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On 2/15/2017 at 3:11 AM, Hypersomniac said:

Hahaha, for 30ºF all you need is jeans, a t-shirt, and jacket.

^ plus a sweater in between. Thats all without joke. Sometimes its too much... depends on north wind!

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I guess my questions for the chicago guys are:
- what do you need to wear for their 30 degree weather. I wear just jeans, t-shirt and jacket. Maybe a hat if it's windy. Hands in pockets of jacket to keep warm
- is it safe to walk around with luggage in the loop? Yes. Just don't be dumb and leave it unattended 
- how safe is it to walk around the loop at night but before midnight? I've never felt unsafe. Just keep walking when anyone homeless person asks for money. Also make it look like you live there and know exactly where you're going. 
- how easy is it to use lyft at night in the loop? Very easy. I use Uber or taxis mostly though but have used lyft many times 
- would you recommend using a bus to get to our hotel while carrying luggage? Can't answer that one. Never taken the buses. But since ubers are so cheap, I'd just take that honestly 
- would you recommend the bus system in general?  Sure, I have no reason why I don't use it. I just usually walk around the city and rarely use any transportation unless it's winter time or I have to go far. 
- how safe is public transportation at night but before midnight? It's pretty safe depending on where you're going. There's a few spots I would NOT recommend going. My girlfriend would take the CTA while going to school downtown at night all the way till 3am. She had a few crazy stories, but for being 20 year old girl by herself, pretty okay. 
 
 
Anymore questions, don't hesitate to PM me. I personally live in the burbs but go very often, have countless friends that live on the west side and North side. Girlfriend lived in South loop for 2 years as well. 
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Chicago is alot of fun. Between the L and Lyft or Uber should should be able to get most anywhere. I've never personally taken the bus. As others have stated, layers are key in cold weather. Avoid cotton, especially as a base layer when hiking. The majority of the Chicago area is relatively safe, the farther south you get the less true this becomes though. If you guys detour through Colorado give me a shout!

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9 hours ago, Corylax18 said:

Chicago is alot of fun. Between the L and Lyft or Uber should should be able to get most anywhere. I've never personally taken the bus. As others have stated, layers are key in cold weather. Avoid cotton, especially as a base layer when hiking. The majority of the Chicago area is relatively safe, the farther south you get the less true this becomes though. If you guys detour through Colorado give me a shout!

Will do my bro!!  If anyone stops by the island of Oahu in the future..  HMU!  Thanks again for all the feedback.  

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I've used the buses in Chicago to get around quite a bit.  I wouldn't take a bus with luggage in hand, but otherwise they're a cheap and easy way to get places that aren't close to the L.  You can buy single or multiple day passes from CTA that allow unlimited rides on the buses and trains.  Anywhere you would want to go in the city will be served by either a train or bus.  I've never felt unsafe on a bus or train, but I also wouldn't venture very far south of the loop.  The parts of Chicago a visitor would see are pretty safe.  There's low-level street crime like any other big city, but that's nothing to worry about.  The real violence tends to occur in areas you're not likely to visit.  

Chicago is a wonderful city, especially in the spring.  Chances are in early March it will still be pretty chilly, but it's been an odd winter in this part of the midwest.  You might luck out and get some nice weather.  If not, bundle up.  A 30 degree day in Chicago would be pretty miserable for someone visiting from Hawaii.  Factor in the wind, rain, sleet, snow, etc., and it can get unpleasant very quickly.  A winter hat and gloves are crucial.  Then layer with fleece and a jacket or coat, and you should be fine.

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I am in the Chicago burbs but it is going to be 60 here this weekend.  I doubt this will last till you get here, but it has been rather warm this winter.  

For the sheer fact that Chicago is still trying to attract jobs and businesses to the loop, crime there doesn't seem to be as bad as other cities.  However, you go south of McCormick Place, west of United Center or North of Wrigley Field you may see a rise in crime.  I have noticed more stories on the new at night about crimes happening within this area.  

Uber and Lyft are great in the city.  I would recommend the L if you are coming in from Ohare.   If there is traffic, you can get to the heart of the loop much easier and quicker.

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