This report describes the typical weather at the El Paso International Airport (El Paso, Texas, United States) weather station over the course of an average December. It is based on the historical records from 1974 to 2012. Earlier records are either unavailable or unreliable.
El Paso, Texas has a cold desert climate. The area within 25 mi of this station is covered by shrublands (88%), grasslands (5%), forests (5%), and built-up areas (3%).
The month of December is characterized by gradually falling daily high temperatures, with daily highs ranging from 60°F to 56°F over the course of the month, exceeding 70°F or dropping below 45°F only one day in ten.
Over the course of December, the length of the day is essentially constant. The shortest day of the month is December 19 with 10:05 hours of daylight; the longest day is December 1 with 10:13 hours of daylight.
The earliest sunrise is at 6:48am on December 1; the latest sunset is at 5:13pm on December 31; the latest sunrise is at 7:06am on December 29; the earliest sunset is at 5:01pm on December 3.
Daylight saving time is observed in 2012 but it neither starts nor ends in December, so the entire month is in standard time.
The median cloud cover ranges from 22% (mostly clear) to 29% (mostly clear). The trend is for the sky to be becoming cloudier with the median cloud cover increasing by 7% from the start to the end of the month.
On December 16, a representative day, the sky is clear or mostly clear 57% of the time, partly cloudy 14% of the time, and mostly cloudy or overcast 27% of the time.
The average probability that some form of precipitation will be observed in a given day is 19%, with little variation over the course of the month.
Throughout December, the most common forms of precipitation are light rain, moderate rain, and light snow.
Light rain is the most severe precipitation observed during 45% of those days with precipitation. It is most likely around December 31, when it is observed during 9% of all days.
Moderate rain is the most severe precipitation observed during 18% of those days with precipitation. It is most likely around December 10, when it is observed during 4% of all days.
Light snow is the most severe precipitation observed during 18% of those days with precipitation. It is most likely around December 31, when it is observed during 4% of all days.
The likelihood of snow falling is highest around December 31, occurring in 6% of days.
Accumulation at this location in December is extremely unlikely. The chances of there being snow on the ground are highest around December 28, occurring 4% of the time.
The snow is typically at its deepest on December 2, with a median depth of 13.9"; the depth exceeds 19.7" only one year out of ten.
The relative humidity typically ranges from 28% (dry) to 75% (humid) over the course of a typical December, rarely dropping below 15% (very dry) and reaching as high as 96% (very humid).
The air is driest around December 1, at which time the relative humidity drops below 35% (comfortable) three days out of four; it is most humid around December 28, rising above 62% (mildly humid) three days out of four.
Dew point is often a better measure of how comfortable a person will find the weather than relative humidity because it more directly relates to whether perspiration will evaporate from the skin, thereby cooling the body. Lower dew points feel drier and higher dew points feel more humid.
Over the course of a typical December, the dew point typically varies from 19°F (dry) to 31°F (dry) and is rarely below 7°F (dry) or above 42°F (dry).
Over the course of December typical wind speeds vary from 0 mph to 13 mph (calm to moderate breeze), rarely exceeding 23 mph (fresh breeze).
The highest average wind speed of 7 mph (light breeze) occurs around December 5, at which time the average daily maximum wind speed is 13 mph (moderate breeze).
The lowest average wind speed of 7 mph (light breeze) occurs around December 19, at which time the average daily maximum wind speed is 13 mph (moderate breeze).