Texas is sunny, humid, and dry due to its sub-tropical climate. Although the average annual temperature can reach 78F with more than 2,800 hours of sunshine, Texas still experiences below-freezing temperatures. But does it snow in Texas?
Texas experiences snowfall several times throughout the state, with the average annual snow being 0.1 inches. The western and northern parts of Texas get more snow, while the south and central areas of Texas receive little or no snowfall.
While winter in Texas is mild compared to other areas of the country, some regions experience snow for up to a week each year. Read on to find out about Texas’s climate and the places where you can catch the largest snowfall in the state.
What Is the Climate in Texas?
The lone star state has various climates across the expansive state. While Texas is generally a sunny state and is ranked the fourth hottest state in the country, you will experience arid and semi-arid climates in the west to humid and subtropical regions in the East, according to IPS International.
Summers in Texas are long days with clear skies and high temperatures. You will experience the hottest days in August with an estimated high of up to 101F. On the other hand, winter is mild, with the coldest month being January, with the average temperatures between 52F and 71F.
The rainy season begins in spring and lasts through early fall in October. Tornadoes and thunderstorms are common, and showers can last two days. Although winters are generally mild, the temperatures vary in different regions. January is the coldest month, and temperatures can reach below freezing and snowfall in some regions.
How Often Does It Snow in Texas?
While snow in Texas is not significant enough to buy a sled, buy snow boots or build snowmen, there is significant snowfall in some parts of the state.
In most years, the average snow is 0.1 inches and melts within a week. However, some significant snow storms have been recorded and are worth noting:
- In February 1956, a week-long snowstorm resulted in a record 61 inches of snow in Vega.
- Thirty years later, in 1986, a snowstorm caused over 30 inches of snow in Port Arthur.
- In 1995, a massive snowstorm resulted in 20 inches of snow in Houston and saw new records in New Orleans and Alabama.
- Recently, over 13 inches of snow were recorded over Christmas in 2004 in Victoria and the middle coast. 2015 and 2017 recorded significant snowfall as well.
- The worst recent winter storm was in February 2020, which resulted in a power emergency, cancelled flights, and traffic disruptions. Temperatures remained below freezing for seven consecutive days in Austin and nine days in Waco, central Texas.
Now, let’s find out where you may see snow in Texas.
Where Am I Likely to See Snow in Texas?
While central Texas, south Texas, and the Texas coast rarely get any snow, you can spot snow in some regions in Texas. Here’s a list of where to enjoy a winter wonderland in Texas.
Amarillo is in the Texas Panhandle and receives significant snow annually. You will get the most snow in December and January, with an annual average of 18 inches. While the snow is not a lot compared to other parts of the country, the view is quite scenic. You can snow-covered trails in higher elevations and plan a fun vacation in the ski resorts.
Lubbock in west Texas gets an annual average of eight inches of snow. While not significant for skiing or snow activities, the light flurry is perfect if you like minimum snowfall. However, an entire winter can pass without rainfall.
El Paso is near the New Mexico border in the western part of Texas. While it is not the snowiest city in the state, the surrounding mountains beautifully display the snowfall. The region gets an annual average snow of four inches. You can enjoy snowball fun and hike along the Franklin Mountain State Park in December and January.
While Dallas does not experience snow yearly, the city and surrounding areas experience some snow. Since catching the snow in the city can be challenging, you can travel to Fort Worth, Arlington, and other surrounding towns when forecasted.
Guadalupe Mountains National Park
If you love the picturesque view of snow-capped mountains, Guadalupe Mountains National Park is a great destination. Guadalupe peak is the highest point in Texas, and you can expect snow throughout winter.
Big Bend National Park
The Big Bend National Park has highly elevated areas above 3,500 feet that get some snow during winter. Although the area is mostly arid, it is a great vacation spot to view snow-capped peaks.
Although the climate in Texas is generally warm and humid throughout the year, you can enjoy snowfall in some regions. Winter is mild compared to other states, and snow is rare in the south, central and coastal Texas.
However, you can enjoy some snow activities in cities such as El Paso, Dallas, Amarillo, and Lubbock. Additionally, you can enjoy scenic snow-capped mountain peaks in Big Bend National Park or the Guadalupe mountains.