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Average Weather in Durham California, United States

In Durham, the summers are hot, arid, and mostly clear and the winters are cold, wet, and partly cloudy. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 39°F to 96°F and is rarely below 31°F or above 104°F.

Temperature

The hot season lasts for 3.4 months, from June 8 to September 21, with an average daily high temperature above 88°F. The hottest day of the year is July 21, with an average high of 96°F and low of 66°F.

The cool season lasts for 3.1 months, from November 20 to February 22, with an average daily high temperature below 62°F. The coldest day of the year is December 31, with an average low of 39°F and high of 54°F.

Average High and Low Temperature

The daily average high (red line) and low (blue line) temperature, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted lines are the corresponding average perceived temperatures.

The figure below shows you a compact characterization of the entire year of hourly average temperatures. The horizontal axis is the day of the year, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the color is the average temperature for that hour and day.

Average Hourly Temperature

Average Hourly Temperature in DurhamJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec12 AM4 AM8 AM12 PM4 PM8 PM12 AMwarmhotcoldcoolvery coldcomfortable
The average hourly temperature, color coded into bands: 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 shaded overlays indicate night and civil twilight.

Clouds

In Durham, the average percentage of the sky covered by clouds experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The clearer part of the year in Durham begins around May 25 and lasts for 4.9 months, ending around October 22. On July 29, the clearest day of the year, the sky is clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 91% of the time, and overcast or mostly cloudy 9% of the time.

The cloudier part of the year begins around October 22 and lasts for 7.1 months, ending around May 25. On December 28, the cloudiest day of the year, the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy 58% of the time, and clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 42% of the time.

Cloud Cover Categories

Cloud Cover Categories in DurhamclearercloudiercloudierJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%Jul 2991%Jul 2991%Dec 2842%Dec 2842%May 2566%May 2566%Oct 2267%Oct 2267%clearovercastmostly cloudymostly clearpartly cloudy
The percentage of time spent in each cloud cover band, categorized by the percentage of the sky covered by clouds: clear < 20% < mostly clear < 40% < partly cloudy < 60% < mostly cloudy < 80% < overcast.

Precipitation

A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. The chance of wet days in Durham varies significantly throughout the year.

The wetter season lasts 6.0 months, from October 27 to April 26, with a greater than 18% chance of a given day being a wet day. The chance of a wet day peaks at 36% on February 28.

The drier season lasts 6.0 months, from April 26 to October 27. The smallest chance of a wet day is 0% on July 19.

Among wet days, we distinguish between those that experience rain alone, snow alone, or a mixture of the two. Based on this categorization, the most common form of precipitation throughout the year is rain alone, with a peak probability of 36% on February 28.

Daily Chance of Precipitation

Daily Chance of Precipitation in DurhamwetwetdryJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Feb 2836%Feb 2836%Jul 190%Jul 190%Jan 130%Jan 130%Oct 2718%Oct 2718%Apr 2618%Apr 2618%rain
The percentage of days in which various types of precipitation are observed, excluding trace quantities: rain alone, snow alone, and mixed (both rain and snow fell in the same day).

Rainfall

To show variation within the months and not just the monthly totals, we show the rainfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day of the year. Durham experiences extreme seasonal variation in monthly rainfall.

The rainy period of the year lasts for 9.0 months, from September 14 to June 15, with a sliding 31-day rainfall of at least 0.5 inches. The most rain falls during the 31 days centered around February 17, with an average total accumulation of 6.3 inches.

The rainless period of the year lasts for 3.0 months, from June 15 to September 14. The least rain falls around July 30, with an average total accumulation of 0.0 inches.

Average Monthly Rainfall

The average rainfall (solid line) accumulated over the course of a sliding 31-day period centered on the day in question, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted line is the corresponding average liquid-equivalent snowfall.

Sun

The length of the day in Durham varies significantly over the course of the year. In 2017, the shortest day is December 21, with 9 hours, 22 minutes of daylight; the longest day is June 20, with 14 hours, 59 minutes of daylight.

Hours of Daylight and Twilight

The number of hours during which the Sun is visible (black line). From bottom (most yellow) to top (most gray), the color bands indicate: full daylight, twilight (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and full night.

The earliest sunrise is at 5:38 AM on June 14, and the latest sunrise is 2 hours, 1 minute later at 7:39 AM on November 4. The earliest sunset is at 4:42 PM on December 7, and the latest sunset is 3 hours, 56 minutes later at 8:39 PM on June 27.

Daylight saving time (DST) is observed in Durham during 2017, starting in the spring on March 12, lasting 7.8 months, and ending in the fall on November 5.

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time in DurhamJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec12 AM2 AM4 AM6 AM8 AM10 AM12 PM2 PM4 PM6 PM8 PM10 PM12 AMJun 145:38 AMJun 145:38 AM8:39 PMJun 278:39 PMJun 27Dec 74:42 PMDec 74:42 PM7:39 AMNov 47:39 AMNov 4Mar 12DSTMar 12DSTDSTNov 5DSTNov 5daynightnightnightnightSolarMidnightSolarMidnightSolarNoonSunriseSunset
The solar day over the course of the year 2017. From bottom to top, the black lines are the previous solar midnight, sunrise, solar noon, sunset, and the next solar midnight. The day, twilights (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and night are indicated by the color bands from yellow to gray. The transitions to and from daylight saving time are indicated by the 'DST' labels.

Humidity

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 perceived humidity level in Durham, as measured by the percentage of time in which the humidity comfort level is muggy, oppressive, or miserable, does not vary significantly over the course of the year, remaining a virtually constant 0% throughout.

Humidity Comfort Levels

Humidity Comfort Levels in DurhamJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Feb 180%Feb 180%Jul 301%Jul 301%drydrycomfortablecomfortablehumidhumid
The percentage of time spent at various humidity comfort levels, categorized by dew point: dry < 55°F < comfortable < 60°F < humid < 65°F < muggy < 70°F < oppressive < 75°F < miserable.

Wind

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 Durham experiences mild seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The windier part of the year lasts for 4.8 months, from November 16 to April 8, with average wind speeds of more than 7.1 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is December 17, with an average hourly wind speed of 7.9 miles per hour.

The calmer time of year lasts for 7.2 months, from April 8 to November 16. The calmest day of the year is September 23, with an average hourly wind speed of 6.3 miles per hour.

Average Wind Speed

Average Wind Speed in DurhamwindywindyJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 mph2 mph4 mph6 mph8 mph10 mph12 mphDec 177.9 mphDec 177.9 mphSep 236.3 mphSep 236.3 mphApr 87.1 mphApr 87.1 mph
The average of mean hourly wind speeds (dark gray line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

The predominant average hourly wind direction in Durham varies throughout the year.

The wind is most often from the south for 7.0 months, from February 20 to September 20, with a peak percentage of 55% on July 30. The wind is most often from the east for 5.0 months, from September 20 to February 20, with a peak percentage of 48% on January 1.

Wind Direction

Wind Direction in DurhamESEJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%20%80%40%60%60%40%80%20%100%0%eastnorthsouthwest
The percentage of hours in which the mean wind direction is from each of the four cardinal wind directions (north, east, south, and west), excluding hours in which the mean wind speed is less than 1 mph. The lightly tinted areas at the boundaries are the percentage of hours spent in the implied intermediate directions (northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest).

Solar Energy

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 experiences extreme seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The brighter period of the year lasts for 3.5 months, from May 10 to August 24, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter above 7.1 kWh. The brightest day of the year is June 29, with an average of 8.4 kWh.

The darker period of the year lasts for 3.6 months, from November 2 to February 20, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter below 3.2 kWh. The darkest day of the year is December 20, with an average of 1.9 kWh.

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy in DurhambrightdarkdarkJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 kWh1 kWh2 kWh3 kWh4 kWh5 kWh6 kWh7 kWh8 kWh9 kWh10 kWhJun 298.4 kWhJun 298.4 kWhDec 201.9 kWhDec 201.9 kWhMay 107.1 kWhMay 107.1 kWhAug 247.1 kWhAug 247.1 kWhNov 23.2 kWhNov 23.2 kWhFeb 203.2 kWhFeb 203.2 kWh
The average daily shortwave solar energy reaching the ground per square meter (orange line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

Topography

For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Durham are 39.646 deg latitude, -121.800 deg longitude, and 154 ft elevation.

The topography within 2 miles of Durham is essentially flat, with a maximum elevation change of 52 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 156 feet. Within 10 miles is essentially flat (1,325 feet). Within 50 miles contains very significant variations in elevation (7,799 feet).

The area within 2 miles of Durham is covered by cropland (98%), within 10 miles by cropland (60%) and grassland (27%), and within 50 miles by grassland (29%) and trees (27%).

Data Sources

This report illustrates the typical weather in Durham, 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 are 3 weather stations near enough to contribute to our estimation of the temperature and dew point in Durham.

For each station, the records are corrected for the elevation difference between that station and Durham according to the International Standard Atmosphere , and by the relative change present in the MERRA-2 satellite-era reanalysis between the two locations.

The estimated value at Durham is computed as the weighted average of the individual contributions from each station, with weights proportional to the inverse of the distance between Durham and a given station.

The stations contributing to this reconstruction are: Chico Municipal Airport (58%, 18 kilometers, north); Oroville Municipal Airport (39%, 23 kilometers, southeast); and Ukiah Municipal Airport (2.8%, 134 kilometers, southwest).

Other Data

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.

Disclaimer

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.