Average Weather in December in Los Alamos New Mexico, United States
Daily high temperatures decrease by 5°F, from 44°F to 39°F, rarely falling below 30°F or exceeding 54°F. The lowest daily average high temperature is 39°F on December 27.
Daily low temperatures decrease by 5°F, from 27°F to 23°F, rarely falling below 13°F or exceeding 36°F. The lowest daily average low temperature is 23°F on December 30.
For reference, on July 4, the hottest day of the year, temperatures in Los Alamos typically range from 60°F to 82°F, while on December 30, the coldest day of the year, they range from 23°F to 39°F.
Average High and Low Temperature in December
The figure below shows you a compact characterization of the hourly average temperatures for the quarter of the year centered on December. The horizontal axis is the day, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the color is the average temperature for that hour and day.
Average Hourly Temperature in December
frigid 15°F freezing 32°F very cold 45°F cold 55°F cool 65°F comfortable 75°F warm 85°F hot 95°F sweltering
The month of December in Los Alamos experiences essentially constant cloud cover, with the percentage of time that the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy remaining about 34% throughout the month.
The clearest day of the month is December 3, with clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy conditions 68% of the time.
For reference, on February 15, the cloudiest day of the year, the chance of overcast or mostly cloudy conditions is 40%, while on September 29, the clearest day of the year, the chance of clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy skies is 79%.
Cloud Cover Categories in December
0% clear 20% mostly clear 40% partly cloudy 60% mostly cloudy 80% overcast 100%
A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. In Los Alamos, the chance of a wet day over the course of December is essentially constant, remaining around 10% throughout.
For reference, the year's highest daily chance of a wet day is 35% on July 31, and its lowest chance is 8% on January 28.
Over the course of December in Los Alamos, the chance of a day with only rain decreases from 5% to 3%, the chance of a day with mixed snow and rain remains an essentially constant 3% throughout, and the chance of a day with only snow remains an essentially constant 3% throughout.
Probability of Precipitation in December
To show variation within the month and not just the monthly total, we show the rainfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day.
The average sliding 31-day rainfall during December in Los Alamos is essentially constant, remaining about 0.3 inches throughout, and rarely exceeding 0.9 inches or falling below -0.0 inches.
Average Monthly Rainfall in December
We report snowfall in liquid-equivalent terms. The actual depth of new snowfall is typically between 5 and 10 times the liquid-equivalent amount, assuming the ground is frozen. As with rainfall, we consider the liquid-equivalent snowfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day.
The average sliding 31-day liquid-equivalent snowfall during December in Los Alamos is essentially constant, remaining about 0.2 inches throughout, and rarely exceeding 0.7 inches or falling to 0.0 inches.
The highest average 31-day liquid-equivalent accumulation is 0.3 inches on December 26.
Average Monthly Liquid-Equivalent Snowfall in December
Over the course of December in Los Alamos, the length of the day is essentially constant. The shortest day of the month is December 21, with 9 hours, 43 minutes of daylight and the longest day is December 1, with 9 hours, 55 minutes of daylight.
Hours of Daylight and Twilight in December
The earliest sunrise of the month in Los Alamos is 6:56 AM on December 1 and the latest sunrise is 18 minutes later at 7:15 AM on December 31.
The earliest sunset is 4:51 PM on December 6 and the latest sunset is 10 minutes later at 5:01 PM on December 31.
Daylight saving time is observed in Los Alamos during 2019, but it neither starts nor ends during December, so the entire month is in standard time.
For reference, on June 21, the longest day of the year, the Sun rises at 5:49 AM and sets 14 hours, 36 minutes later, at 8:24 PM, while on December 22, the shortest day of the year, it rises at 7:12 AM and sets 9 hours, 43 minutes later, at 4:55 PM.
Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time in December
We base the humidity comfort level on the dew point, as it determines whether perspiration will evaporate from the skin, thereby cooling the body. Lower dew points feel drier and higher dew points feel more humid. Unlike temperature, which typically varies significantly between night and day, dew point tends to change more slowly, so while the temperature may drop at night, a muggy day is typically followed by a muggy night.
The chance that a given day will be muggy in Los Alamos is essentially constant during December, remaining around 0% throughout.
For reference, on August 26, the muggiest day of the year, there are muggy conditions 0% of the time, while on January 1, the least muggy day of the year, there are muggy conditions 0% of the time.
Humidity Comfort Levels in December
dry 55°F comfortable 60°F humid 65°F muggy 70°F oppressive 75°F miserable
This section discusses the wide-area hourly average wind vector (speed and direction) at 10 meters above the ground. The wind experienced at any given location is highly dependent on local topography and other factors, and instantaneous wind speed and direction vary more widely than hourly averages.
The average hourly wind speed in Los Alamos is essentially constant during December, remaining within 0.1 miles per hour of 6.9 miles per hour throughout.
For reference, on April 11, the windiest day of the year, the daily average wind speed is 8.9 miles per hour, while on August 3, the calmest day of the year, the daily average wind speed is 5.1 miles per hour.
The lowest daily average wind speed during December is 6.8 miles per hour on December 19.
Average Wind Speed in December
The hourly average wind direction in Los Alamos throughout December is predominantly from the west, with a peak proportion of 51% on December 3.
Wind Direction in December
Definitions of the growing season vary throughout the world, but for the purposes of this report, we define it as the longest continuous period of non-freezing temperatures (≥ 32°F) in the year (the calendar year in the Northern Hemisphere, or from July 1 until June 30 in the Southern Hemisphere).
The growing season in Los Alamos typically lasts for 5.9 months (180 days), from around April 24 to around October 21, rarely starting before April 4 or after May 13, and rarely ending before October 1 or after November 9.
The month of December in Los Alamos is reliably fully outside of the growing season.
Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season in December
frigid 15°F freezing 32°F very cold 45°F cold 55°F cool 65°F comfortable 75°F warm 85°F hot 95°F sweltering
Growing degree days are a measure of yearly heat accumulation used to predict plant and animal development, and defined as the integral of warmth above a base temperature, discarding any excess above a maximum temperature. In this report, we use a base of 50°F and a cap of 86°F.
The average accumulated growing degree days in Los Alamos are essentially constant during December, remaining within 1°F of 2,708°F throughout.
Growing Degree Days in December
This section discusses the total daily incident shortwave solar energy reaching the surface of the ground over a wide area, taking full account of seasonal variations in the length of the day, the elevation of the Sun above the horizon, and absorption by clouds and other atmospheric constituents. Shortwave radiation includes visible light and ultraviolet radiation.
The average daily incident shortwave solar energy in Los Alamos is essentially constant during December, remaining within 0.1 kWh of 3.1 kWh throughout.
The lowest average daily incident shortwave solar energy during December is 3.0 kWh on December 23.
Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy in December
For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Los Alamos are 35.888 deg latitude, -106.307 deg longitude, and 7,303 ft elevation.
The topography within 2 miles of Los Alamos contains very significant variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 1,424 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 7,300 feet. Within 10 miles contains very significant variations in elevation (6,178 feet). Within 50 miles also contains extreme variations in elevation (8,045 feet).
The area within 2 miles of Los Alamos is covered by shrubs (89%), within 10 miles by shrubs (57%) and trees (41%), and within 50 miles by shrubs (56%) and trees (39%).
This report illustrates the typical weather in Los Alamos year round, based on a statistical analysis of historical hourly weather reports and model reconstructions from January 1, 1980 to December 31, 2016.
Temperature and Dew Point
There is only a single weather station, Los Alamos County Airport, in our network suitable to be used as a proxy for the historical temperature and dew point records of Los Alamos.
At a distance of 2 kilometers from Los Alamos, closer than our threshold of 150 kilometers, this station is deemed sufficiently nearby to be relied upon as our primary source for temperature and dew point records.
The station records are corrected for the elevation difference between the station and Los Alamos according to the International Standard Atmosphere , and by the relative change present in the MERRA-2 satellite-era reanalysis between the two locations.
Please note that the station records themselves may additionally have been back-filled using other nearby stations or the MERRA-2 reanalysis.
All data relating to the Sun's position (e.g., sunrise and sunset) are computed using astronomical formulas from the book, Astronomical Tables of the Sun, Moon and Planets , by Jean Meeus.
All other weather data, including cloud cover, precipitation, wind speed and direction, and solar flux, come from NASA's MERRA-2 Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis . This reanalysis combines a variety of wide-area measurements in a state-of-the-art global meteorological model to reconstruct the hourly history of weather throughout the world on a 50-kilometer grid.
Land Use data comes from the Global Land Cover SHARE database , published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
Elevation data comes from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) , published by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Names, locations, and time zones of places and some airports come from the GeoNames Geographical Database .
Time zones for aiports and weather stations are provided by AskGeo.com .
Maps are © Esri, with data from National Geographic, Esri, DeLorme, NAVTEQ, UNEP-WCMC, USGS, NASA, ESA, METI, NRCAN, GEBCO, NOAA, and iPC.
The information on this site is provided as is, without any assurances as to its accuracy or suitability for any purpose. Weather data is prone to errors, outages, and other defects. We assume no responsibility for any decisions made on the basis of the content presented on this site.
We draw particular cautious attention to our reliance on the MERRA-2 model-based reconstructions for a number of important data series. While having the tremendous advantages of temporal and spatial completeness, these reconstructions: (1) are based on computer models that may have model-based errors, (2) are coarsely sampled on a 50 km grid and are therefore unable to reconstruct the local variations of many microclimates, and (3) have particular difficulty with the weather in some coastal areas, especially small islands.
We further caution that our travel scores are only as good as the data that underpin them, that weather conditions at any given location and time are unpredictable and variable, and that the definition of the scores reflects a particular set of preferences that may not agree with those of any particular reader.