We know the question on your mind, San Diegans — when’s it going to really, truly get cold? Thanks to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center, we know what temperatures and precipitation trends to expect in our city for December, January, and February. While exact weather conditions typically can’t be predicted more than a week in advance, here’s a seasonal outlook to help you prepare for what winter will bring.
Reminder: The first day of winter is on Wednesday, Dec. 21.
Think San Diego-style cool — like a sweater or jacket with your flip-flops. This winter, our region has a 33-40% chance of temperatures being higher than normal.
Expect less precipitation. San Diego has a 40-50% chance of seeing below normal rainfall amounts this winter. Think good thoughts for some much-needed soaks.
Drought conditions are expected to persist this season in San Diego County.
Typically, December’s temps are comfortable, averaging between a low of 52.7° and high of 63.3°. If you like the rain, it’s usually the month with the most rainfall accumulated — an average of 5.8 days for a combined 1.65 inches of precipitation. It’s also the month with the least sunshine. But what about ocean temperatures? The surface water temp averages 60.4° this month — not safe for swimming without a wetsuit or drysuit, as breathing becomes more difficult in water below 70°.
Jumpin’ into January
For January, the average temperature spans 52.7° to 64.2° — close to what we might experience in December. On average, there are 5.3 days of rain. The months with the lowest UV index in SD tend to be January-March, with an average maximum UV index of 4.
This final stretch of winter brings average temps between 51.8° and 63.1° — the coldest month of the year in San Diego. It’s also the coldest month for seawater, with an average ocean temperature of 58.6°. Brrr. On average, there are 6.3 rainfall days with an accumulative 1.5 inches of rain in February.