Flagstaff, Arizona is a winter wonderland! On this page we offer information on the amount and frequency of snowfall in Flagstaff as well as when its first and last occurrences occurred.
On Wednesday, an unprecedented winter storm struck Northern Arizona and is projected to surpass the seasonal snowfall record set in 1948-49 at Flagstaff Pulliam Airport.
Flagstaff is an outdoor adventurer’s paradise. Boasting snow-capped mountains, ponderosa pine forests, and rugged sandstone canyons as its backdrop, Flagstaff offers ample opportunity for outdoor adventuring. Widely-renowned as an international skiing and snowboarding hub, Flagstaff also boasts numerous mountain biking trails, hiking and walking paths, scenic drives and picturesque drives to take advantage of. Furthermore, nearby Wupatki National Monument and Walnut Canyon National Monument contain Native American pueblo sites to make this Arizona city truly irresistibly welcoming for winter sports fans!
Flagstaff usually sees its first snowfall of the season between November and December; light dusting may even start as early as September. The last major snowfall typically falls around May; on average there are 33.9 snowy days per year in Flagstaff.
On an average day in Flagstaff, the likelihood of precipitation is 9 percent and amounts to 0.39 inches of rain or snow falling that day. As altitude increases, so too does its likelihood.
Flagstaff stands in stark contrast to Phoenix, known as the Valley of the Sun. Due to its higher elevation and location on the North American continent, Flagstaff experiences much heavier snowfall. Furthermore, winter temperatures in Flagstaff often reach 20 below zero! Bikers love Flagstaff for its many bike lanes and breathtaking mountain trails that wind their way around it.
The initial snowfall of the season usually arrives between October and December, on average occurring every 6.2 days over that month and accumulating to an accumulation depth of 3.65 inches.
December and January mark the onset of winter with cold temperatures and heavy snowfall; typically peaking around March for some years with record amounts. Most snowfall is light and short-lived in January and February with only two or three days each year experiencing blizzards that bring over 10 inches in one day.
Flagstaff temperatures begin to gradually fall as fall and winter draw near. Average highs during November range between 56 degrees Fahrenheit to 47 degrees Fahrenheit while average lows range from 29 degrees Fahrenheit to 26 degrees Fahrenheit.
Visitor should prepare themselves when visiting Arizona during winter by packing plenty of warm clothing, covering their plants and pipes against freezing, and bringing their pets inside whenever possible in order to prevent hypothermia. Because Arizona weather can often be unpredictable, travelers are advised to monitor local forecasts regularly. Furthermore, staying at a ski resort or another accommodation that features indoor facilities will offer them comfort during their visit to the desert state.
Flagstaff can be difficult to adjust to, with its cold climate and ample snowfall, particularly for visitors from warmer temperatures. But winter remains beautiful here with plenty of activities such as snowshoeing and cross-country skiing available for you to do as well as taking an exciting horse-drawn sleigh ride at Hitchin’ Post Stables!
Flagstaff receives a very high average amount of snowfall each month. December often features snow for 7.4 days with 7.36 inches accumulating by end of month – this month is also one of the shortest with 9h and 48min of daylight available on average per day.
As a former upstate New York-er, I know what it’s like to live in an environment with lots of cold temperatures and snowfall. Thankfully, I moved away before things became too intense; living somewhere where it snows adds an extra beautiful layer to everything!
Flagstaff snowfall varies from year to year, with some years being heavier than others. December typically experiences over 27 inches, while light years experience less than 9.3 inches; similarly for January and February.
Flagstaff remains blanketed in snowfall from winter into spring, with February typically witnessing the highest concentration of snowfall; nevertheless, 33.9 days per year bring snowstorms that provide opportunities to ski and snowboard in Coconino National Forest nearby or the Flagstaff Nordic Center which serves cross-country skiing enthusiasts.
Heavy snowfall has caused issues across Phoenix, including power outages and cancelled classes at Northern Arizona University. Furthermore, roads were closed off and issued winter storm warnings across most of Arizona as the storm has disrupted flights at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport.
Snow in Flagstaff in January is common and typically begins falling late December. On average, the city receives 53.6 inches of snow during this month – which can pose significant difficulties to motorists and pedestrians alike.
Flagstaff typically experiences heavier-than-normal snowfall during February, making this an excellent time to visit its ski resorts such as Grand Canyon Village and Elk Ridge Resort, both offering slopes and trails suitable for skiers of all levels – plus there’s even a free shuttle bus connecting Flagstaff with its ski resorts all winter long!