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Maine vs Pennsylvania?

DexterTomDexterTom 30 replies6 threads Junior Member
edited December 2 in College Search & Selection
Hi, I’m a prospective applicant from abroad. I’m used to living in 66F-120F temperatures. I wonder how cold is Maine, really? Especially Waterville? I heard that temperatures could go to -4F sometimes and it’s 6months snowy without sun.

What about central Pennsylvania? How brutal is it compared to Maine’s weather and winters? Will I be able to adjust to that weather? What problems would I face when I traveling from my 115F place to one of those places for the first time and what do I need to know?

I also have chronic joint pains. If that helps.
edited December 2
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Replies to: Maine vs Pennsylvania?

  • merc81merc81 10590 replies164 threads Senior Member
    edited December 2
    You may want to start with some data. Waterville residents experience an average January low of 8°F. As an all-time low, temperatures dropped to -32°F. You should be able to find comparable information for locations of interest in Pennsylvania.

    https://www.bestplaces.net/climate/city/maine/waterville

    https://www.plantmaps.com/maine-record-high-and-low-temperature-map.php
    edited December 2
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  • one1ofeachone1ofeach 279 replies9 threads Junior Member
    Pennsylvania is more mild than Maine. But I wouldn’t say Maine is 6 months of snow and darkness.

    I had a friend from the southern border of the us in college. She had never seen snow. She survived just fine after a shopping trip freshman year to buy real clothes. You will meet kids who will help you out with what to buy. When you move into your dorms it will still be hot!
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  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 7810 replies65 threads Senior Member
    Talk to your doctors for a medical opinion if the cold would negatively impact your joint pains. If the answer is yes, look further south than PA.
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  • collegemom3717collegemom3717 6918 replies60 threads Senior Member
    What you are used to and what you can adapt to are separate questions. Plenty of people move- for lots of reasons- to places with really different climates. My cold-adapted husband melted when he first got to Bahrain, but he adapted.

    Waterville does get sun in the winter (deeply blue skies and amazing sunsets) but the days *are* shorter than closer to the equator. Central PA in the middle of winter is warmer than Maine (though the deep winter is shorter), but to me, once you have to bundle up to go outside the actual #s don't matter that much.

    I agree with @momofsenior1, though, to make sure that your joint pain won't be exacerbated by the cold, and if it will be don't look farther north than the Carolinas.
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  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn 39007 replies2140 threads Super Moderator
    My favorite time of year in Maine is the winter! It's just gorgeous, especially as you go north. The state gets a LOT of sun in the winter, different from other states. We had friends who moved from Maine to Ohio and quickly returned after their first winter - they said it was cloudy most of the time and they didn't like it.
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  • EmpireappleEmpireapple 1834 replies27 threads Senior Member
    It's all cold. Some of us love the winter, others not so much.

    If you have chronic joint pain check out Arizona.
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  • PublisherPublisher 8764 replies101 threads Senior Member
    If your chronic joint pain is aggravated by cold weather, then Maine is not a good option for you.

    Pennsylvania winters are milder than those in Maine with respect to temperature, but it can be overcast during the winter months.
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  • PublisherPublisher 8764 replies101 threads Senior Member
    Worth noting, however, is that Colby College in Waterville, Maine has a separate term for the coldest month--the month of January--during which students can take a one month long course in warm weather locations.

    Also during the last 2 or 3 weeks in December, school is not in session due to Christmas break & New Year's Day holiday.
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  • DexterTomDexterTom 30 replies6 threads Junior Member
    Oh. That is starting to sound scarier that I actually thought. I have an appointment tomorrow with my doc, so will see what he says. But the biggest thing here is - I already applied ED to Colby!!!!!

    Man, what an unseen blunder!? And Colby seems very positively aggressive and generous in giving FA to applicants, and I’ve run out of excuses to make to get out of ED.

    Do you guys recommend me to withdraw me ED app before decisions are out and try EDing to any other college, probably in Pennsylvania?

    I got no options other than colleges in NY, ME and PA.

    Why is it so cold?!
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  • TheodenTheoden 227 replies7 threads Junior Member
    You've got great advice here. Central PA can get cold in the winter, but not like Waterville, Maine.

    The only place with "interesting weather" in PA is in the NW corner near Erie, since it gets what's known as the Lake Effect snow conditions. It's not colder than Waterville, but snowier.

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  • gardenstategalgardenstategal 5936 replies10 threads Senior Member
    PA is cold, ME is colder. Better cold weather activities in ME, imo. I can enjoy a Maine winter but just March through the PA ones. But if you have a physical issue with cold, neither is a good choice.
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  • DexterTomDexterTom 30 replies6 threads Junior Member
    Hmm, don’t you think that a human body can acclimatize and adapt to changing geographies, maybe not overnight but 2-3 months when body slowly starts getting things in order? Does anyone have any experiences in adjusting from equator to polar conditions?
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  • DustyfeathersDustyfeathers 3359 replies77 threads Senior Member
    This will create controversy, but Maine to my mind is a much more beautiful state. YMMV
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  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 7810 replies65 threads Senior Member
    Of course we can adapt! That said, we don't know your medical condition/joint issues.

    I have family that live up north with a medical problem and she suffers badly every single winter. They are moving to FL as soon as it's possible with their jobs.
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  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn 39007 replies2140 threads Super Moderator
    I had to move FROM the south because I get terrible headaches in the heat. I never adapted to the heat even though I was born there.

    I like Pennsylvania, but Maine is hard to beat. Ocean, mountains, lakes and not crowded (if you avoid Route One during the summer, ha). But I can also see that it might be a hard place to life if you have joint problems.
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 1250 replies17 threads Senior Member
    This will create controversy, but Maine to my mind is a much more beautiful state. YMMV

    And that impacts OP’s concern about cold and its effect on a medical condition by ....?
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  • PublisherPublisher 8764 replies101 threads Senior Member
    OP: It will be cold in Maine, but folks dress appropriately.

    Based on the temperatures in your current location, you might be most comfortable in the states of Arizona (dry, desert climate), Florida (humid & warm) or Texas.
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 78992 replies701 threads Senior Member
    edited December 2
    Publisher wrote: »
    OP: It will be cold in Maine, but folks dress appropriately.

    Based on the temperatures in your current location, you might be most comfortable in the states of Arizona (dry, desert climate), Florida (humid & warm) or Texas.

    Warm also describes Hawaii (except on top of some mountains).
    edited December 2
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  • PrdMomto1PrdMomto1 208 replies5 threads Junior Member
    edited December 2
    Why are you limited to Maine, NY and Penn? There is still time to apply to colleges in more southern states it needed isn't there?

    If your doc tells you your medical condition would worsen in a cold climate could that be a reason to get out of an ED decision? That might be worth looking into.

    As for the cold, unless your doc tells you the cold would be bad for you, I think you'd been fine in Maine. You just might need a serious adjustment in your wardrobe. I'm sure some students would help you shop once you get there.

    My D has the opposite situation. She is from the northern midwest and is going to school quite far south where it is very warm and humid at times. The first month was hard but she adjusted quickly. In fact she was talking to us on the phone the other day and was commenting she was wearing a sweatshirt and sitting in the shade and when the wind would blow she was cold. I looked up the temp where she is on my phone and it was 80 degrees! It's going to be funny to see her try to readjust come winter break at home. We have snow here!
    edited December 2
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  • DeepbreathsDeepbreaths 7 replies0 threads New Member
    I've lived in Maine my whole life (except for college in Boston). It's cold. Yesterday, we had a big snowstorm that dropped a foot of snow. I also have hip issues. I'm not sure what joints you're referring to but if you're talking knees or hips, winter can be tough not just because of the cold but because you will find yourself climbing through snow and slipping on ice. All of this said, there's a reason that I stay here. Maine is beautiful and safe. You just need to have appropriate gear for the cold weather and take it slow when there's snow and ice on the ground.

    If you lived in Florida, you'd spend summers going from air conditioned space to air conditioned space. In Maine, we spend winters going from heated space to heated space.
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