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Average Weather in Carbondale Colorado, United States

In Carbondale, the summers are warm and mostly clear, the winters are freezing and partly cloudy, and it is dry year round. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 14°F to 84°F and is rarely below -1°F or above 91°F.

Climate Summary

very coldcoldcoolwarmcoolcoldvery coldJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec77%77%52%52%clearovercastprecipitation: 1.4 inprecipitation: 1.4 in0.7 in0.7 inmuggy: 0%muggy: 0%drydrytourism score: 6.2tourism score: 6.20.00.0
Click on each chart for more information.

Based on the tourism score, the best time of year to visit Carbondale for warm-weather activities is from late June to late August.

Temperature

The warm season lasts for 3.5 months, from June 1 to September 15, with an average daily high temperature above 74°F. The hottest day of the year is July 8, with an average high of 84°F and low of 52°F.

The cold season lasts for 3.1 months, from November 21 to February 25, with an average daily high temperature below 45°F. The coldest day of the year is January 7, with an average low of 14°F and high of 35°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 CarbondaleJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec12 AM4 AM8 AM12 PM4 PM8 PM12 AMfreezingfreezingfreezingfreezingvery coldcoldcoolcoolwarmvery 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.

Hacıbektaş, Turkey (6,515 miles away) and Fareydūnshahr, Iran (7,240 miles) are the far-away foreign places with temperatures most similar to Carbondale (view comparison).

Clouds

In Carbondale, 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 Carbondale begins around May 30 and lasts for 5.1 months, ending around November 2. On September 13, the clearest day of the year, the sky is clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 77% of the time, and overcast or mostly cloudy 23% of the time.

The cloudier part of the year begins around November 2 and lasts for 6.9 months, ending around May 30. On February 21, the cloudiest day of the year, the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy 48% of the time, and clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 52% of the time.

Cloud Cover Categories

Cloud Cover Categories in CarbondaleclearercloudiercloudierJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%Sep 1377%Sep 1377%Feb 2152%Feb 2152%May 3064%May 3064%Nov 265%Nov 265%clearmostly clearpartly cloudymostly cloudyovercast
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 Carbondale varies throughout the year.

The wetter season lasts 10 months, from July 9 to May 19, with a greater than 19% chance of a given day being a wet day. The chance of a wet day peaks at 25% on May 1.

The drier season lasts 1.7 months, from May 19 to July 9. The smallest chance of a wet day is 13% on June 15.

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 in Carbondale changes throughout the year.

Rain alone is the most common for 10 months, from January 30 to December 3. The highest chance of a day with rain alone is 25% on July 31.

Snow alone is the most common for 1.3 months, from December 15 to January 24. The highest chance of a day with snow alone is 8% on December 29.

Mixed snow and rain is the most common for 2.6 weeks, from January 24 to January 30 and from December 3 to December 15. The highest chance of a day with mixed snow and rain is 7% on March 3.

Daily Chance of Precipitation

Daily Chance of Precipitation in CarbondalerainJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%May 125%May 125%Jun 1513%Jun 1513%Jan 2415%Jan 2415%Dec 316%Dec 316%rainsnowmixed
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. Carbondale experiences some seasonal variation in monthly rainfall.

The rainy period of the year lasts for 11 months, from February 1 to December 21, with a sliding 31-day rainfall of at least 0.5 inches. The most rain falls during the 31 days centered around September 29, with an average total accumulation of 1.4 inches.

The rainless period of the year lasts for 1.3 months, from December 21 to February 1. The least rain falls around January 16, with an average total accumulation of 0.4 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.

Snowfall

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. Carbondale experiences some seasonal variation in monthly liquid-equivalent snowfall.

The snowy period of the year lasts for 5.4 months, from October 27 to April 7, with a sliding 31-day liquid-equivalent snowfall of at least 0.1 inches. The most snow falls during the 31 days centered around December 27, with an average total liquid-equivalent accumulation of 0.5 inches.

The snowless period of the year lasts for 6.6 months, from April 7 to October 27. The least snow falls around July 20, with an average total liquid-equivalent accumulation of 0.0 inches.

Average Liquid-Equivalent Monthly Snowfall

Average Liquid-Equivalent Monthly Snowfall in CarbondalesnowsnowJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0.0 in0.2 in0.4 in0.6 in0.8 in1.0 in1.2 in1.4 inDec 270.5 inDec 270.5 inJul 200.0 inJul 200.0 inOct 270.1 inOct 270.1 inApr 70.1 inApr 70.1 in
The average liquid-equivalent snowfall (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 rainfall.

Sun

The length of the day in Carbondale varies significantly over the course of the year. In 2017, the shortest day is December 21, with 9 hours, 23 minutes of daylight; the longest day is June 20, with 14 hours, 57 minutes of daylight.

Hours of Daylight and Twilight

Hours of Daylight and Twilight in CarbondaleJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 hr24 hr4 hr20 hr8 hr16 hr12 hr12 hr16 hr8 hr20 hr4 hr24 hr0 hr12 hr, 7 minMar 2012 hr, 7 minMar 2014 hr, 57 minJun 2014 hr, 57 minJun 2012 hr, 9 minSep 2212 hr, 9 minSep 229 hr, 23 minDec 219 hr, 23 minDec 21nightnightday
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 5:41 AM on June 13, and the latest sunrise is 1 hour, 59 minutes later at 7:40 AM on November 4. The earliest sunset is at 4:45 PM on December 7, and the latest sunset is 3 hours, 55 minutes later at 8:39 PM on June 27.

Daylight saving time (DST) is observed in Carbondale 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 CarbondaleJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec12 AM2 AM4 AM6 AM8 AM10 AM12 PM2 PM4 PM6 PM8 PM10 PM12 AMJun 135:41 AMJun 135:41 AM8:39 PMJun 278:39 PMJun 27Dec 74:45 PMDec 74:45 PM7:40 AMNov 47:40 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 Carbondale, 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 CarbondaleJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Jul 30%Jul 30%drydrycomfortablecomfortable
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 Carbondale experiences mild seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The windier part of the year lasts for 4.8 months, from February 2 to June 26, with average wind speeds of more than 5.2 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is April 5, with an average hourly wind speed of 6.1 miles per hour.

The calmer time of year lasts for 7.1 months, from June 26 to February 2. The calmest day of the year is August 5, with an average hourly wind speed of 4.3 miles per hour.

Average Wind Speed

Average Wind Speed in CarbondalewindyJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 mph1 mph2 mph3 mph4 mph5 mph6 mph7 mph8 mph9 mph10 mphApr 56.1 mphApr 56.1 mphAug 54.3 mphAug 54.3 mphFeb 25.2 mphFeb 25.2 mphJun 265.2 mphJun 265.2 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 Carbondale varies throughout the year.

The wind is most often from the west for 7.3 months, from March 4 to October 13, with a peak percentage of 47% on April 23. The wind is most often from the south for 4.7 months, from October 13 to March 4, with a peak percentage of 51% on January 1.

Wind Direction

Wind Direction in CarbondaleSWSJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%20%80%40%60%60%40%80%20%100%0%westsoutheastnorth
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).

Best Time of Year to Visit

To characterize how pleasant the weather is in Carbondale 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 Carbondale for general outdoor tourist activities is from late June to late August, with a peak score in the last week of July.

Tourism Score

Tourism Score in Carbondalebest timeJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec02468106.26.20.00.0 precipitationprecipitationcloudscloudstemperaturetemperaturetourism score
The tourism score (filled area), and its constituents: the temperature score (red line), the cloud cover score (blue line), and the precipitation score (green line).

The beach/pool score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 75°F and 90°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Carbondale for hot-weather activities is from late June to early August, with a peak score in the second week of July.

Beach/Pool Score

Beach/Pool Score in Carbondalebest timeJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec02468103.53.50.00.0 precipitationprecipitationcloudscloudstemperaturetemperaturebeach/pool score
The beach/pool score (filled area), and its constituents: the temperature score (red line), the cloud cover score (blue line), and the precipitation score (green line).

Methodology

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.

Growing Season

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 Carbondale typically lasts for 4.5 months (139 days), from around May 14 to around September 30, rarely starting before April 24 or after June 6, and rarely ending before September 10 or after October 20.

Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season

Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season in Carbondalegrowing seasonJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%May 1450%May 1450%Sep 3050%Sep 3050%Jun 690%Jun 690%Sep 1090%Sep 1090%Apr 2410%Apr 2410%Oct 2010%Oct 2010%0%Dec 60%Dec 6Jul 26100%Jul 26100%frigidfreezingvery coldcoldcoolcomfortablewarmhot
The percentage of time spent in various temperature 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 black line is the percentage chance that a given day is within the growing season.

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 in Carbondale should appear around April 24, only rarely appearing before April 9 or after May 7.

Growing Degree Days

The average growing degree days accumulated over the course of the year, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

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 2.5 months, from May 13 to July 28, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter above 7.2 kWh. The brightest day of the year is June 17, with an average of 8.4 kWh.

The darker period of the year lasts for 3.4 months, from November 2 to February 12, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter below 3.7 kWh. The darkest day of the year is December 21, with an average of 2.5 kWh.

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy in CarbondalebrightdarkdarkJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 kWh1 kWh2 kWh3 kWh4 kWh5 kWh6 kWh7 kWh8 kWh9 kWh10 kWhJun 178.4 kWhJun 178.4 kWhDec 212.5 kWhDec 212.5 kWhMay 137.2 kWhMay 137.2 kWhJul 287.2 kWhJul 287.2 kWhNov 23.7 kWhNov 23.7 kWhFeb 123.7 kWhFeb 123.7 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 Carbondale are 39.402 deg latitude, -107.211 deg longitude, and 6,480 ft elevation.

The topography within 2 miles of Carbondale contains very significant variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 928 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 6,319 feet. Within 10 miles contains very significant variations in elevation (7,123 feet). Within 50 miles also contains extreme variations in elevation (9,436 feet).

The area within 2 miles of Carbondale is covered by cropland (44%), shrubs (40%), and trees (11%), within 10 miles by trees (58%) and shrubs (34%), and within 50 miles by trees (62%) and shrubs (24%).

Data Sources

This report illustrates the typical weather in Carbondale, 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 Carbondale.

For each station, the records are corrected for the elevation difference between that station and Carbondale 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 Carbondale is computed as the weighted average of the individual contributions from each station, with weights proportional to the inverse of the distance between Carbondale and a given station.

The stations contributing to this reconstruction are: Sunlight (9%, 15 kilometers, west); Aspen–Pitkin County Airport (35%, 35 kilometers, southeast); and Eagle County Regional Airport (56%, 37 kilometers, northeast).

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.

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.