Washington DC Weather

Washington DC WeatherThe weather in Washington, DC varies a lot throughout the year and from one year to the next. Therefore, the type of clothing you want to bring greatly depends on what time of year you plan to visit.

During summer, temperatures often top 90 degrees Fahrenheit. High humidity often accompanies the hot weather. Therefore, bring light clothing. You will sweat more with higher humidity, so bring multiple changes of clothes. Visiting the attractions usually involves a lot of walking, so you will get thirsty. Make sure to drink plenty of water. Also, afternoon thundershowers are common, so bring a poncho or umbrella. These storms often have a lot of lightning, so be prepared to seek shelter on short notice.

During spring and autumn, temperatures can be unpredictable. Generally, the weather is cooler during early spring and late autumn and warmer during late spring and early autumn. Also, temperatures often vary widely during a single day, with chilly mornings, warm days and cool evenings. High temperatures can vary from one day to the next. Fronts often pass through the area, so warm weather one day can be followed by cool weather the next day.

Like summer, afternoon thundershowers do happen, so bring appropriate rain gear. Most severe weather occurs during spring, but it can happen during autumn as well. Tornadoes have occurred but are extremely rare. Many flowers bloom during spring, so bring medicine if you are susceptible to allergies. Your best bet is to dress in layers during these seasons so you can adapt to changing weather conditions.

Winter varies greatly from year to year. Generally, several winter storms can be expected. Some winters have more while others have fewer. While snowfall amounts from a single storm are usually less than foot, some winters have seen major winter storms that shut down schools and government agencies for up to a week. Such winters include 1995-96, 2002-03 and 2009-2010. Winter weather is infrequent enough that motorists generally are not well-schooled at driving in it, so strongly consider using mass transit. Snow usually melts within a couple weeks of falling, so the ground is usually visible through most of the winter. The weather can also be mild during winter with temperatures topping 60 degrees some days. Do bring a heavy coat, but also be prepared to dress in layers.