FLAGSTAFF, Arizona — According to the National Weather Service, 2022-23 has already become one of the snowiest years on record in Flagstaff. That means many commuters will spend Friday stuck in traffic after a heavy snowfall hit on Wednesday night.
Flagstaff experiences at least 0.04 inches of precipitation annually. Wet days in Flagstaff can vary between rain only, snow only and a mix of both precipitation types.
Flagstaff lies approximately at an elevation of 7,000 feet, meaning its winters can be very cold and snowy, while summer can bring heatwave conditions with heat waves of 100+.
According to the National Weather Service in Flagstaff, 2022-23 has seen its fifth snowiest meteorological winter ever. Winter begins in December and lasts through February.
Flagstaff averages an annual high temperature of 71degF while its average low is 29degF. There are an estimated daily average of 68 hours of sunshine with May being the sunniest month and June the cloudiest.
Winter snowfalls can create traffic jams and even close interstate highways – something which was evident recently in Northern Arizona where Interstate 40 between Kingman and Flagstaff was shut down, leaving hundreds of drivers stranded along its route.
Flagstaff typically experiences one inch of snowfall every winter season, typically six or seven times monthly during January and February. Blizzards with 10″+ of snow fall every few years in Flagstaff.
Flagstaff receives an average amount of snow each year depending on the time of year and location of storms that hit. As part of its snow removal program, plowing takes place for all major streets, sidewalks/bike lanes/FUTS underpasses/driveways across 27,000 driveways within the city limits.
Flagstaff sees little snowfall during spring. On average, only about one out of every four days receive fresh accumulation, with most accumulation being less than six inches; though large snowstorms that cover over 10 inches aren’t uncommon either – typically occurring between January and February.
Flagstaff typically experiences rain-and-snow mix precipitation for 8.4 months out of the year; with August being particularly wet. Average monthly precipitation amounts average 10.9 days of rain fall.
Snowy days in Flagstaff offer ideal conditions for winter sports or simply sipping hot chocolate. Many enjoy visiting the Flagstaff Nordic Center, an award-winning cross-country ski resort located within Coconino National Forest with over 40 kilometers of groomed trails that cater to skiers of all skill levels.
Tourism scores favor sunny, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 75 and 90 degrees, while beach/pool scores tend to improve during the first week of July with peak scores hitting 75/90. The chart also displays sunrise, solar noon, sunset, and civil, nautical, and astronomical twilights (civil noon sunset civil nautical and astronomical). Furthermore, its interactive map lets users click any hour to display its temperature update every 30 minutes.
While much of Arizona is experiencing a heatwave, Flagstaff in northern Arizona remains comfortably cool due to its elevation at 7,000 feet and pine-scented air that serves as the ideal remedy against desert heat.
Flagstaff typically experiences mild temperatures throughout most of the year; however, its monsoon season begins in late July/early August with heavy afternoon showers. An assortment of easy-to-layer clothing should be kept handy to adapt to rapidly fluctuating weather patterns throughout the day.
Typically, the first snowfall of a season occurs between October and November and April or May; however, light accumulations could come earlier if conditions allow. Even June could see light snowfall depending on its arrival date.
This page gathers together information on how much snow Flagstaff typically receives annually, along with its distribution across days of the year and when first and last snowfalls typically occur. Furthermore, monthly and yearly snowy day counts in Flagstaff can also be found here as well as information regarding first and last snowfalls typically happening. It provides invaluable insights into understanding Flagstaff’s climate; using this knowledge you can better anticipate when conditions will be most pleasant while planning trips more effectively to Flagstaff.
Flagstaff Snow Park in Arizona offers one of the best places for families looking to take their children sledding or tubing – it has one of the state’s premier winter playgrounds with many recreational opportunities like sledding, tubing, cross-country skiing and winter yurts!
Coconino National Forest offers this park, open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It features over 40 kilometers of groomed trails for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, offering beginner lessons as well as cafe service and rental gear rentals.
Before planning any trip, it is a smart idea to consult the weather forecast. An unexpected change can create dangerous situations; therefore it is prudent to bring along a map, extra clothing and food as well as sturdy shoes with good tread, an ice axe or snow shovel in case conditions change abruptly.
Flagstaff residents should anticipate light to moderate snowfall this week. Snow will fall throughout the day and there may even be thunder and lightning at higher elevations. This storm should hit early Friday morning before another larger system arrives later that week and could bring more significant amounts of snowfall.