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Where is the perfect weather?
July 1, 2011 9:04 AM   Subscribe

What US place has the best 4-season weather? Qualifications: snow in the winter but not super cold or super overcast; real springs and falls; and a warm (not usually going over 90 degrees), NON-HUMID summer.
posted by yarly to Travel & Transportation (27 answers total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
 
For a non-humid summer, you need to look west of the Mississippi. Many of the mountainous areas in California and Oregon could fit the bill.
posted by dfriedman at 9:07 AM on July 1, 2011


Colorado Springs? Not sure it doesn't go over 90 in summer.
posted by lakeroon at 9:10 AM on July 1, 2011


My vote's for Denver. Snows sometimes in the winter but it's still bright and sunny, summers are hot but dry, spring and fall is nice.
posted by jabes at 9:10 AM on July 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


Northern New Mexico (north of Albuquerque) and Colorado are like that.
posted by Electrius at 9:10 AM on July 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Denver/Boulder area. Summers can get over 90 but it is so dry, it really doesn't feel that hot. Most of the time. It is so sunny here I think if I ever move, I am going to need some serious light therapy to adjust.
posted by rachums at 9:14 AM on July 1, 2011


Santa Fe
posted by theodolite at 9:15 AM on July 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Sounds like BSk on the Koppen climate classification - Denver is an example. The map in the linked article might help.
posted by plep at 9:20 AM on July 1, 2011 [7 favorites]


Depending on the altitude, Denver can get super cold, down near zero with a lot of snow.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:27 AM on July 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Move to Colorado! I wish I still lived there.
posted by jrichards at 9:28 AM on July 1, 2011


You're describing Provo, Utah (a city that I hate for a variety of reasons but that has exactly the weather you're describing).
posted by The World Famous at 9:29 AM on July 1, 2011


Forget Provo, that town is nuts. Come up North to Ogden, Utah. It's great here.
posted by TooFewShoes at 9:39 AM on July 1, 2011


Ogden is nicer than Provo, but it's a lot colder in the winter. And it's still Utah, so yuck ;-)
posted by The World Famous at 9:42 AM on July 1, 2011


To put a fine point on Colorado Springs ... CS is extremely christian/right-wing. If that's you then fine. If you want the same weather, but a different political environment, go a few miles west to Manitou Springs. Afa northern New Mexico goes, Santa Fe is great. Any farther north, while maintaining or increasing that altitude (e.g. Taos) and summers get pretty short.
posted by allelopath at 9:46 AM on July 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


My neck of the woods pretty much fits the bill (On the edge of the High Desert/Angeles Nat'l Forest), but we do get over 90 in the summer.
posted by luckynerd at 10:02 AM on July 1, 2011


Northern Colorado fits your bill, though there's always a few weeks of extreme temperature every summer/winter. It's been 90+ degrees here all week, and the first few weeks in January are generally pretty cold.
posted by lilac girl at 10:07 AM on July 1, 2011


What's "super-cold"? I lived in south central Montana for four years (after being born and raised in Milwaukee) and I prefer Montana's climate immensely. It gets just as cold or colder than the midwest, but it's DRY so it doesn't feel as cold. There are a few days above 90 in July or August, but again, the humidity is nil so it feels awesome. Spring is a bit of an issue - you can still get snow in May, and the lack of deciduous (?) trees means you don't get all the pretty colors that you do further east. It's mostly yellow Aspen trees and of course the evergreens. I'd go back in a heartbeat if there were JOBS.

Here are some graphs of an average year in Bozeman. You can play around with the variables with the "select graphs" link on the upper right.
posted by desjardins at 10:35 AM on July 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Depending on the altitude, Denver can get super cold, down near zero with a lot of snow.

The altitude in Denver doesn't change much. There are definitely other cities up in the mountains that fit that description, but in general, the Denver metro area does not. We have had blizzards and below zero temperatures but it is pretty rare.

Also, in my experience summer here can get pretty hot. We've had a string of low to mid 90 days these past couple of weeks and there are some summers where it's in the 90's fairly consistently. When we first moved here people would say it doesn't get very hot in the summer, but a lot of those people were natives who grew up here when summers were cooler on average and that's still their perception (one of those people told us we wouldn't need an air conditioner and boy was THAT A LIE).
posted by Kimberly at 10:41 AM on July 1, 2011


Western NY is almost there, but our winters are heavily overcast. Winter features a whole damn bunch of snow but is not especially cold for the northeast. Summer is very nice. The same mechanism that drives lake-effect snow acts as a ginormous air conditioner, keeping the usual high in the high 70s to low 80s with "it's not dry but it's not humid* either" humidity. The official temperature in Buffalo has never in recorded history broken 100F.

But, as noted, winters put a solid gray blanket over the sky.

If this is about maybe moving, the big downside to WNY is finding a job. But if you have a job, housing is practically free.

*What's the line for "humid?" WNY is much more humid than the desert areas, but it's not remotely even on the same planet of humid as North Carolina or DC.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:47 AM on July 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


another vote for Colorado. the best thing about it in the summer if it gets up to 90 degrees during the day, it's ALWAYS cools down at night. always.
posted by cristinacristinacristina at 11:16 AM on July 1, 2011


The Outer Cape Cod, in MA. Anything further out than Brewster. Tempered by the Gulf Stream, so it's warmer than the rest of MA in the winter, cooler in the summer. Downside is the summer tourists, but the other 10 months of the year are wonderful.
posted by Runes at 12:28 PM on July 1, 2011


My first thought was Pittsburgh, PA but you would prefer provo, ut
posted by infini at 2:22 PM on July 1, 2011


Bend, Oregon. (Wikipedia climate information)
posted by jz at 4:26 PM on July 1, 2011


Pittsburgh might actually work for you. Beautiful city, within easy day-trips of much, much beautiful nature. Just don't come any farther north in PA than that, or you will want to kill yourself with fire in the wintertime.

it's actually shocking how much difference 100 miles makes in the climate here in PA.
posted by deep thought sunstar at 5:45 PM on July 1, 2011


Pittsburgh not super-overcast? HAHA. Have you ever lived here? We're known as Seattle-East. Doom and gloom a lot of the time.

Non-humid summers? Hardly. So far this summer it hasn't been too bad. But it's July now. It'll be here soon.
posted by XhaustedProphet at 11:24 PM on July 1, 2011


Flagstaff, AZ. Mild, dry summers (mid-high 80s), short, snowy winters.
posted by LyndsayMW at 8:48 PM on July 3, 2011


+1 on Bozeman. I'd also add Missoula. Both are gorgeous Montana towns.
posted by karizma at 12:53 PM on July 4, 2011


Boulder, CO. The high altitude lets in more UV, but that means that you can have two feet of snow in January, and if the sun shines the next day you can be out there shoveling in a t-shirt. The low humidity means that the summers can have low heat indexes (and you can always escape into the foothills if it heats up). Also, there are few bugs (mosquitoes, etc.).

Disadvantages? - Away from the ocean, if that matters to you; your skin will turn into leather if you are there long enough (I lived in Boulder for ten years, it quite was a relief to go to humid places on trips); and it is dry, and tends to burn down a lot.
posted by carter at 9:52 PM on July 8, 2011


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