People have mixed opinions when it comes to snow. Some people love it, while others just see it as an obstacle standing between them and their morning commute to work. Whatever your opinion may be, you may be wondering if Oklahoma gets snow if you’re considering moving there or taking a trip during the winter.
In general, Oklahoma does get snow. There are a few parts of Oklahoma that get snow in the winter, as well as a few that do not. Northern, Northwestern, and Western Oklahoma will get more annual snowfall than other areas of the state. Southern Oklahoma, in particular, sees little to no snow each year.
Below, we’ll discuss everything you need to know related to snow in Oklahoma. Keep reading to learn more!
The winters in Oklahoma vary significantly based on what side of the state you’re looking at. While winter precipitation types can range from ice, freezing rain, and traditional rain, some areas of the state do get snow.
Parts of Oklahoma get snow. While you won’t find much snow in Southern Oklahoma, you will find it in the northern, western, and northwestern parts of the state. Although these are typically the driest areas in the state, they surprisingly get the most annual snowfall, as well.
The panhandle area of Oklahoma, especially the western part of the panhandle, generally gets more snow than any other part of the state. The average annual snowfall in this area typically ranges between 20-30″. Northern and Northwestern Oklahoma also get a good amount of snowfall, as does Central Oklahoma.
Western and Northwestern Oklahoma see a lot of annual snowfall due to their higher elevation. Since temperatures are generally colder in highly-elevated areas, you can expect colder winter temperatures and snowy conditions.
Two of Oklahoma’s biggest cities, Tulsa and the capital city of Oklahoma City, also get a fair amount of snow each year. In Oklahoma City, you can expect between 6-8″ annually, while Tulsa sees an annual average snowfall of approximately 9″.
You generally will not see much snow if you live in or visit the southern part of the state. Oklahoma is bordered by Texas to the south, a state that famously sees little to no snowfall each year. For this reason, temperatures are often higher in this part of the state, reducing the amount of snowfall that occurs.
While Oklahoma residents can expect to experience temperatures below freezing at any point between October and April, the height of winter tends to fall between December and February. Usually, the first major snowfall will occur in December. The snowy season will generally continue throughout February.
If you live in the northern, northwestern, or western part of Oklahoma, or if you are planning a trip to one of these areas during the winter season, you may be wondering what activities you can take part in to enjoy the snowy weather.
Some of the most popular activities Oklahomans participate in when there’s snow on the ground include:
- Outdoor ice skating
- Hiking or snowshoeing
- Sledding or snow tubing
Let’s discuss how you can take part in these activities.
There’s nothing more fun than gathering your family or a group of friends for a day of ice skating! While indoor ice skating rinks have become very popular in recent years, there are quite a few outdoor rinks situated throughout the state. Just find one in your area, grab your ice skates, and get ready for a day or an evening of fun!
Although hiking is generally associated with the warmer seasons, hiking down a trail with snow falling around you is an experience like no other. If there’s lots of snow on the ground, you could even invest in some snowshoes and go snowshoeing. Many Oklahoma residents enjoy hiking around state parks, including Alabaster Caverns State Park and Black Mesa State Park.
Oklahoma is a state that’s famously full of flat plains. However, if you’re lucky enough to live near a small hill, sledding and snow tubing are winter activities that the entire family can enjoy. You can go with your kids or gather up a group of friends and make a day of it, or just go for a couple of hours after you get home from work. Bring along an insulated thermos full of hot chocolate to make the day even more special!
If you love seeing snow falling outside your windows in the winter, the northern, northwestern, and western parts of Oklahoma are the places for you. If you cringe at the thought of scraping snow off your windshield before you leave for work each morning, you’ll probably be more comfortable in Southern Oklahoma.
In general, Western Oklahoma, especially the panhandle, tends to have the highest annual snowfall in the state, while the southern part that borders Texas typically has the lowest.