Average Weather at Cold Bay Airport Alaska, United States
At Cold Bay Airport, the summers are cool, windy, and overcast and the winters are long, freezing, extremely windy, and mostly cloudy. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 25°F to 57°F and is rarely below 11°F or above 62°F.
Based on the tourism score, the best time of year to visit Cold Bay Airport for warm-weather activities is from late July to late August.
The warm season lasts for 3.0 months, from June 19 to September 19, with an average daily high temperature above 52°F. The hottest day of the year is August 11, with an average high of 57°F and low of 49°F.
The cold season lasts for 4.4 months, from November 24 to April 6, with an average daily high temperature below 38°F. The coldest day of the year is January 22, with an average low of 25°F and high of 33°F.
Average High and Low Temperature
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
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
At Cold Bay Airport, 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 at Cold Bay Airport begins around August 30 and lasts for 2.6 months, ending around November 18. On October 9, the clearest day of the year, the sky is clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 43% of the time, and overcast or mostly cloudy 57% of the time.
The cloudier part of the year begins around November 18 and lasts for 9.4 months, ending around August 30. On July 7, the cloudiest day of the year, the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy 78% of the time, and clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 22% of the time.
Cloud Cover Categories
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. The chance of wet days at Cold Bay Airport varies throughout the year.
The wetter season lasts 6.2 months, from July 25 to January 31, with a greater than 33% chance of a given day being a wet day. The chance of a wet day peaks at 43% on September 5.
The drier season lasts 5.8 months, from January 31 to July 25. The smallest chance of a wet day is 23% on May 6.
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 43% on September 5.
Daily Chance of Precipitation
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. Cold Bay Airport experiences significant seasonal variation in monthly rainfall.
Rain falls throughout the year at Cold Bay Airport. The most rain falls during the 31 days centered around September 16, with an average total accumulation of 3.4 inches.
The least rain falls around March 26, with an average total accumulation of 1.3 inches.
Average Monthly Rainfall
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. Colder, drier snow tends to be on the higher end of that range and warmer, wetter snow on the lower end.
As with rainfall, we consider the snowfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day of the year. Cold Bay Airport experiences some seasonal variation in monthly liquid-equivalent snowfall.
The snowy period of the year lasts for 5.6 months, from November 7 to April 24, with a sliding 31-day liquid-equivalent snowfall of at least 0.1 inches. The most snow falls during the 31 days centered around February 3, with an average total liquid-equivalent accumulation of 0.4 inches.
The snowless period of the year lasts for 6.4 months, from April 24 to November 7. The least snow falls around August 11, with an average total liquid-equivalent accumulation of 0.0 inches.
Average Liquid-Equivalent Monthly Snowfall
The length of the day at Cold Bay Airport varies extremely over the course of the year. In 2020, the shortest day is December 21, with 7 hours, 7 minutes of daylight; the longest day is June 20, with 17 hours, 25 minutes of daylight.
Hours of Daylight and Twilight
The earliest sunrise is at 6:09 AM on June 17, and the latest sunrise is 4 hours, 8 minutes later at 10:17 AM on December 28. The earliest sunset is at 5:20 PM on December 13, and the latest sunset is 6 hours, 15 minutes later at 11:35 PM on June 23.
Daylight saving time (DST) is observed at Cold Bay Airport during 2020, starting in the spring on March 8, lasting 7.8 months, and ending in the fall on November 1.
Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time
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 at Cold Bay Airport, 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
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 at Cold Bay Airport experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.
The windier part of the year lasts for 7.3 months, from September 12 to April 21, with average wind speeds of more than 14.6 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is November 24, with an average hourly wind speed of 18.5 miles per hour.
The calmer time of year lasts for 4.7 months, from April 21 to September 12. The calmest day of the year is July 16, with an average hourly wind speed of 10.7 miles per hour.
Average Wind Speed
The predominant average hourly wind direction at Cold Bay Airport varies throughout the year.
The wind is most often from the south for 3.1 weeks, from June 16 to July 8, with a peak percentage of 32% on July 6. The wind is most often from the west for 2.9 months, from July 8 to October 6, with a peak percentage of 38% on August 28. The wind is most often from the north for 8.3 months, from October 6 to June 16, with a peak percentage of 31% on January 1.
Cold Bay Airport is located near a large body of water (e.g., ocean, sea, or large lake). This section reports on the wide-area average surface temperature of that water.
The average water temperature experiences some seasonal variation over the course of the year.
The time of year with warmer water lasts for 2.9 months, from July 9 to October 5, with an average temperature above 48°F. The day of the year with the warmest water is August 20, with an average temperature of 51°F.
The time of year with cooler water lasts for 4.1 months, from January 6 to May 10, with an average temperature below 39°F. The day of the year with the coolest water is March 13, with an average temperature of 36°F.
Average Water Temperature
Best Time of Year to Visit
To characterize how pleasant the weather is at Cold Bay Airport throughout the year, we compute two travel scores.
The tourism score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 65°F and 80°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Cold Bay Airport for general outdoor tourist activities is from late July to late August, with a peak score in the second week of August.
The beach/pool score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 75°F and 90°F.
For each hour between 8:00 AM and 9:00 PM of each day in the analysis period (1980 to 2016), independent scores are computed for perceived temperature, cloud cover, and total precipitation. Those scores are combined into a single hourly composite score, which is then aggregated into days, averaged over all the years in the analysis period, and smoothed.
Our cloud cover score is 10 for fully clear skies, falling linearly to 9 for mostly clear skies, and to 1 for fully overcast skies.
Our precipitation score, which is based on the three-hour precipitation centered on the hour in question, is 10 for no precipitation, falling linearly to 9 for trace precipitation, and to 0 for 0.04 inches of precipitation or more.
Our tourism temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 50°F, rising linearly to 9 for 65°F, to 10 for 75°F, falling linearly to 9 for 80°F, and to 1 for 90°F or hotter.
Our beach/pool temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 65°F, rising linearly to 9 for 75°F, to 10 for 82°F, falling linearly to 9 for 90°F, and to 1 for 100°F or hotter.
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 at Cold Bay Airport typically lasts for 4.9 months (149 days), from around May 17 to around October 13, rarely starting before April 30 or after June 5, and rarely ending before September 20 or after November 1.
Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season
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.
Based on growing degree days alone, the first spring blooms at Cold Bay Airport should appear around August 8, only rarely appearing before July 23 or after October 15.
Growing Degree Days
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 significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.
The brighter period of the year lasts for 3.5 months, from April 24 to August 6, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter above 4.0 kWh. The brightest day of the year is May 31, with an average of 4.9 kWh.
The darker period of the year lasts for 3.8 months, from October 24 to February 17, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter below 1.3 kWh. The darkest day of the year is December 17, with an average of 0.4 kWh.
Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy
For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Cold Bay Airport are 55.206 deg latitude, -162.724 deg longitude, and 62 ft elevation.
The topography within 2 miles of Cold Bay Airport contains only modest variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 167 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 53 feet. Within 10 miles contains only modest variations in elevation (4,206 feet). Within 50 miles also contains extreme variations in elevation (8,182 feet).
The area within 2 miles of Cold Bay Airport is covered by water (41%), shrubs (28%), and herbaceous vegetation (15%), within 10 miles by water (49%) and shrubs (36%), and within 50 miles by water (73%) and shrubs (17%).
This report illustrates the typical weather at Cold Bay Airport, 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
Cold Bay Airport has a weather station that reported reliably enough during the analysis period that we have included it in our network. When available, historical temperature and dew point measurements are taken directly from this weather station. These records are obtained from NOAA's Integrated Surface Hourly data set, falling back on ICAO METAR records as required.
In the case of missing or erroneous measurements from this station, we fall back on records from nearby stations, adjusted according to typical seasonal and diurnal intra-station differences. For a given day of the year and hour of the day, the fallback station is selected to minimize the prediction error over the years for which there are measurements for both stations.
All data relating to the Sun's position (e.g., sunrise and sunset) are computed using astronomical formulas from the book, Astronomical Algorithms 2nd Edition , 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.