How Cold Is It In Chicago?
Weather in the Windy City
No matter how you look at it, Chicago is a great city! Voted the best big city in the United States for seven years in a row by Condé Nast Traveler, Chicago is loaded with things to see and do. Beautiful neighborhoods, striking architecture, art, music, museums, and natural beauty all add up to an amazing place to be, whether you’re visiting or you live here. So, how’s the weather?
Chicago Weather Conditions
The climate of Chicago is categorized as hot-summer humid continental, but what does that mean? Basically, it means the summers are hot and humid, and the winters are cold and sometimes snowy. Chicago is definitely a city of four distinct seasons, and while Chicago’s winter temperatures often fall below freezing, in the summer it can get quite warm and humid. The temperatures are hotter in summer and cooler in winter inland than near the lake, and spring and fall come with relatively sunny skies and temperatures that swing between cool and warm.
There can be a cold climate in Chicago, and in fact, winters can dip below freezing. When they do, the city often sees snow. How cold is it in Chicago? As of 2014, the Weather Channel has ranked Chicago as the sixth-coldest major city in the United States. It doesn’t get as much snow as Cleveland or Buffalo, but you can expect more snowfall in Chicago than you’d find in New Yor City. The average annual snowfall in Chicago is 36 inches, and the temperatures range from an average low of 16.5°F to an average high of 31°F.
Weather Updates for Chicago
If you ever want to know the current Chicago temperature, or you are seeking historical weather data, the National Weather Service has you covered. Their office in Chicago has one of the longest periods of official weather records, dating all the way back to 1870. However, the 1870 and 1871 records taken at 181 West Washington Street were lost in the Great Chicago Fire.
So, Why is it Called the Windy City?
Is Chicago particularly windy? In truth, when Chicago was given the Windy City moniker, the weather was not what was being referenced. A New York newspaper writer was actually making a joke about the bluster of people from Chicago promoting their city as the site of the 1893 Columbian Exposition. The term Windy City stuck, in part because of all the Chicago politicians blowing hot air. That being said, Chicago is actually a little bit windier than the average American city, wit average wind speeds ranging from 8 miles per hour in summer to 12 months per hour in spring.
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