Does it snow in Yosemite?

Does it snow in Yosemite? Yes, it does! Yosemite receives just over 39 inches of snow accumulation and 7.8 days of measurable snowfall, on average, per year.

Located just a few miles from Mariposa City, California, and surrounded by the Sierra National Forest and the Stanislaus National Forest, Yosemite is one of the largest and most visited national parks in the United States, with a total area of 1,187 square miles and more than two million visitors a year.

Despite being located less than 200 miles from the Californian coast, due to its elevation, Yosemite experiences especially cold and snowy winters, experiencing frequent frost throughout this season. Thanks to this climatic characteristic, Yosemite enjoys great popularity among the national parks managed by the NPS.


    Snow in Yosemite?

    Snow in Yosemite?

    As is often the case in areas with altitudes above 6,000 feet, snowfall is usual; Yosemite is no exception to this standard. Usually, Yosemite's snow season begins in late fall and ends in early spring, with January being, by far, the snowiest month of all.

    Curious fact

    On average, the average snowfall and frost in Yosemite span from late November to early April.

    While the average annual snowfall in Yosemite does not usually exceed forty inches of accumulation, sometimes this standard is far exceeded.

    For example, during the winter of 1948-1949, Yosemite received 176.5 inches of snow; in other words, it received four times more snow than usual. 

    The climate of Yosemite


    According to the Köppen climate classification, Yosemite exhibits a Mediterranean Hot-summer climate (Csa) in almost all of its territory, the only exception being those regions above 5,000 feet of altitude, where the climatic behavior usually presents differences.

    Generally, the most apparent climatic differences between the higher and lower elevation regions of Yosemite are usually observed in the recorded precipitation levels. For example, although areas below 4,000 feet get 36 inches of precipitation annually, areas above that level get 50 inches of rainfall.

    Finally, as far as the usual behavior of the seasons is concerned, Yosemite experiences hot and dry summers, unlike its winters which are usually quite cold and humid, as seen in Yosemite National Park temperature records, where January and December are traditionally the coldest months, and July and August are usually the hottest.


    Summer weather characteristics

    • Highest record temperature: 112 °F / 44.4 °C (July 22nd and 24th, 1915.)
    • Average high: 85.43 °F (29.6 °C.)
    • Average low: 54.15 °F (12.3 °C.)
    • Average precipitation per summer month: 0.33 inches (0.83 cm.)

    Winter weather characteristics

    • Lowest record temperature: -7 °F / -21.6 °C (January 1st, 2009.)
    • Average high: 50.33 °F (10.1 °C.)
    • Average low: 30 °F (-1.1 °C.)
    • Average rainfall per winter month: 6.14 inches (15.59 cm.)
    • Average snowfall per winter month: 8.68 inches (22 cm.)

    Precipitation and other weather characteristics

    • Average precipitation: 36.55 inches (92.8 cm.)
    • Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in): 66.6.
    • Average annual snowfall: 39.4 inches (100 cm.)
    • Average snowy days per year (≥ 0.1 inches): 7.8.

    When does it snow in Yosemite? 🌨 

    Snow in Yosemite.

    Does it snow in Yosemite in November?

    Yes, it might snow in November. Beginning this month, Yosemite receives moderate and consistent amounts of snow, reaching an average monthly accumulation of 3.8 inches.

    Does it snow in Yosemite in December?

    Yes, it does! Once winter begins, the intensity of snowfalls increases by 87%, while their frequency rises by 250%. This growth results in an average snowfall of 7.1 inches and an average snowy day of 2.1.

    Curious fact

    In case you wonder, there are possibilities to enjoy a White Christmas in Yosemite. Indeed, many Californians flock to Yosemite Valley during Christmas in the hope of enjoying a magical White Christmas.

    Does it snow in Yosemite in January?

    Yes, it does! January is the snowiest month in Yosemite, with an average snow accumulation of 17.7 inches.

    Does it snow in Yosemite in February?

    Yes, it does! As surprising as it may seem, snowfall in February is not only, on average, four times less than that registered in January but also 35% less than that registered in March.

    Does it snow in Yosemite in March?

    Yes, it does! Despite being the last month of winter, snowfall remains above five inches of accumulation on average.

    Does it snow in Yosemite in April?

    Yes, it does! While snowfall in regions below 8,000 feet does not exceed an inch of accumulation on average, it does in higher areas. Indeed, snowfall can persist into July on Yosemite's highest peaks.

    Does it snow in Yosemite in May, June, and July?

    Yes, it might. However, this phenomenon is only noticeable in regions located above 8,000 feet in elevation.

    How much does it snow in Yosemite? 🌨

    Next, we present an informative table on different climatological parameters of Yosemite, which includes the average snowfall per month expressed in inches:

    Average low (°F)28.530.233.537.644.551.057.456.851.441.332.527.841.0
    Record low (°F)−7191215223232241910−1−7
    Average precipitation (inches)6.986.495.473.171.920.460.290.160.401.564.055.6036.55
    Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)
    Average snowfall (inches)
    Average snowy days (≥ 0.1 in)

    Informative table on different climatological parameters of Yosemite, which includes the average snowfall per month expressed in inches.

    The above data comes from climatic data provided by the Yosemite Park Headquarters, California.

    Go up

    We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. More information.