Sacramento Weather

Sacramento WeatherCradled in California's Great Central Valley, Sacramento enjoys a Mediterranean climate of relatively mild winters and very warm, arid summers. Less than 80 miles northeast of the San Francisco Bay Area, Sacramento's climate is influenced by its low elevation of 25 feet above sea level, its proximity to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and its location between California's Coast Range and Sierra Nevada Mountains.

"Indian" summers are the norm for Sacramento, with beautiful, warm sunny days common in September and early October. Average temperature highs in September are just below 90 degrees and the lows hover in the high 50s. September generally offers 24 clear, sunny days, and October sees an average of 19 clear days. Rainfall, clouds and chances for tule fog increase in November, while temperature averages range from the mid-40s to the mid-60s.

Most of Sacramento's average 17.5 inches of annual rainfall occur from November to March, with January being the wettest month. Although winter temperatures in the River City generally range from the 30s to the 50s, the season's temperatures are greatly affected by the region's tule fog. The thick, enveloping ground fog can settle in for days at a time, reducing visibility to an eighth of a mile to just one foot at times. More common after rainy days, the fog develops from cold mountain air descending into the valley at night. The result is the dense fog that lodges in the Central Valley until significant wind breaks it up. Tule fog often keeps Sacramento temperatures in the 30s and 40s, although if the sun breaks through the layer warmer temperatures prevail. The ground fog stops at about 1,000 feet elevation, so a trip to the hills can take travelers out of the Valley fog. Although the official foggy season is November 1 to March 1, the most significant fog is seen from November to January.

The weather starts to warm the Capital City in March with temperatures ranging from the mid-40s to the mid-60s and in April with highs in the low 70s. Warmth, sun and wind steadily increase into May, with temperatures reaching into the low 80s and winds increasing to an average of 9 miles per hour. The town averages only 3 days of rain in May, making it a good month to travel throughout the region.

The dry, hot air that pervades Sacramento's summers can make it a beautiful but very warm time to travel to the area. With 94 to 97 percent chance of sunshine, the area offers clear, bright sunny days and temperatures occasionally reaching into the low 100s. Cool breezes from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta River area can temper the warm summer evenings a bit. Average summer temperatures range from the high 50s to the mid-90s.