Very Hot and Very Cold Washington DC
If you have ever wanted to live somewhere with seasons so opposite from each other, this is the weather for you. Not only is Washington DC the nation's capital, but it offers amazing architecture and a long history. However, planning outdoor activity at any given part of the year may require a look at the local forecast first. Winter temperatures here are extremely cold and the summer climate is hot and humid which makes it very muggy on certain days. July and August tend to be the hottest months of the year here averaging 88 degrees with the dew point close to 70%. Winter in Washington DC can be just as uncomfortable, but instead of the heat it is brutally cold. January's average low is 29 degrees and you're lucky if the weather allows the sun to break the sky and warm things up to at least 42 degrees. Major blizzards do hit the DC area, but not every year. About 50% of snow days here produce less than an inch of snow on the ground. January and February do however have several days that yield more than 5 inches of snow on the ground. A total of 15 inches of snow falls down on the Washington DC area annually.
Close to half of July has daily temperatures reaching 90 degrees or above. The month of August comes in second place with a total of 8 days on average that reach to 90 degrees or higher. Let's not forget about the humidity here during the summer season either. Unlike temperature, humidity tends to remain high into the evenings in this type of climate. Rain does cool things off though. Precipitation in the liquid form rather than the winter snow begins to increase in the month of June as the weather begins to heat up. On average, there are 9 days of rain in Washington DC in June totaling 3.23 inches. July and August each have 10 days of rain with a total of 10 inches combined. As temperatures begin to cool down in September to a high of 80 degrees and a low of 62, the DC area has about 8 to 9 inches of rain over a third of the month. Total rainfall for the year averages 24 inches.
Washington DC Historical Flood Data
Weather includes many different events ranging from hurricanes and snowstorms to floods and tornadoes. Below is a record of flooding by date in the DC area that includes the total inches of water that resulted. The key to preparing for a flood is to remember that depending on the elevation of your area, a downpour of only a few inches of rain in a short period of time can cause tremendous damage with some areas under several feet of water.
In 1996 Hurricane Fran flooded Washington DC with over 16 inches of water. In January of that same year snowmelt caused over 8 inches of water to flood the city.
In 2003 the deadliest Atlantic hurricane of the year Hurricane Isabel brought in tidal waters in the amount of 10 inches and caused catastrophic flooding.
Hurricane Agnes which in 1972 was the costliest hurricane to date caused over 8.5 inches of water to flood the Washington DC area. It would be over a decade later before the nation's capital would see a repeat disaster in the Election Day Flood of 1985.
In the 1930's and 1940's there were several floods ranging from 8.7 inches to over 11 inches of flood waters taking things out in it's path.