Average Weather in Qacha’s Nek Lesotho
In Qacha’s Nek, the summers are long, comfortable, and wet; the winters are short, very cold, and dry; and it is mostly clear year round. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 29°F to 75°F and is rarely below 25°F or above 83°F.
Based on the tourism score, the best time of year to visit Qacha’s Nek for warm-weather activities is from early December to late March.
The warm season lasts for 4.2 months, from November 4 to March 11, with an average daily high temperature above 71°F. The hottest day of the year is January 2, with an average high of 75°F and low of 52°F.
The cold season lasts for 2.4 months, from May 26 to August 7, with an average daily high temperature below 60°F. The coldest day of the year is June 28, with an average low of 29°F and high of 56°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
In Qacha’s Nek, 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 Qacha’s Nek begins around May 12 and lasts for 4.2 months, ending around September 17. On July 16, the clearest day of the year, the sky is clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 85% of the time, and overcast or mostly cloudy 15% of the time.
The cloudier part of the year begins around September 17 and lasts for 7.8 months, ending around May 12. On November 5, the cloudiest day of the year, the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy 37% of the time, and clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 63% of the time.
Cloud Cover Categories
A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. The chance of wet days in Qacha’s Nek varies very significantly throughout the year.
The wetter season lasts 5.2 months, from October 20 to March 28, with a greater than 31% chance of a given day being a wet day. The chance of a wet day peaks at 58% on February 3.
The drier season lasts 6.8 months, from March 28 to October 20. The smallest chance of a wet day is 3% on July 5.
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 58% on February 3.
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. Qacha’s Nek experiences extreme seasonal variation in monthly rainfall.
The rainy period of the year lasts for 9.1 months, from August 8 to May 12, with a sliding 31-day rainfall of at least 0.5 inches. The most rain falls during the 31 days centered around January 26, with an average total accumulation of 5.0 inches.
The rainless period of the year lasts for 2.9 months, from May 12 to August 8. The least rain falls around July 5, with an average total accumulation of 0.2 inches.
Average Monthly Rainfall
The sliding 31-day liquid-equivalent quantity of snowfall in Qacha’s Nek does not vary significantly over the course of the year, staying within 0.1 inches of 0.1 inches throughout.
Average Liquid-Equivalent Monthly Snowfall
The length of the day in Qacha’s Nek varies significantly over the course of the year. In 2018, the shortest day is June 21, with 10 hours, 12 minutes of daylight; the longest day is December 22, with 14 hours, 6 minutes of daylight.
Hours of Daylight and Twilight
The earliest sunrise is at 4:56 AM on December 3, and the latest sunrise is 2 hours, 6 minutes later at 7:02 AM on July 1. The earliest sunset is at 5:11 PM on June 11, and the latest sunset is 1 hour, 59 minutes later at 7:11 PM on January 9.
Daylight saving time (DST) is not observed in Qacha’s Nek during 2018.
Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight
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 Qacha’s Nek, 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
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 Qacha’s Nek experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.
The windier part of the year lasts for 6.1 months, from May 26 to November 29, with average wind speeds of more than 7.9 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is September 13, with an average hourly wind speed of 9.7 miles per hour.
The calmer time of year lasts for 5.9 months, from November 29 to May 26. The calmest day of the year is March 2, with an average hourly wind speed of 6.1 miles per hour.
Average Wind Speed
The predominant average hourly wind direction in Qacha’s Nek is from the west throughout the year.
Best Time of Year to Visit
To characterize how pleasant the weather is in Qacha’s Nek 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 Qacha’s Nek for general outdoor tourist activities is from early December to late March, with a peak score in the first week of January.
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 Qacha’s Nek for hot-weather activities is from mid December to early February, with a peak score in the first week of January.
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 in Qacha’s Nek typically lasts for 6.7 months (203 days), from around October 8 to around April 29, rarely starting before September 8 or after November 19, and rarely ending before April 5 or after May 22.
Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and 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 Qacha’s Nek should appear around August 14, only rarely appearing before August 9 or after August 22.
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 3.2 months, from October 28 to February 5, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter above 7.3 kWh. The brightest day of the year is December 22, with an average of 8.2 kWh.
The darker period of the year lasts for 3.1 months, from May 2 to August 7, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter below 4.7 kWh. The darkest day of the year is June 19, with an average of 3.8 kWh.
Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy
For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Qacha’s Nek are -30.115 deg latitude, 28.689 deg longitude, and 6,467 ft elevation.
The topography within 2 miles of Qacha’s Nek contains very significant variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 1,781 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 6,515 feet. Within 10 miles contains very significant variations in elevation (4,045 feet). Within 50 miles also contains extreme variations in elevation (8,284 feet).
The area within 2 miles of Qacha’s Nek is covered by grassland (74%) and bare soil (26%), within 10 miles by bare soil (49%) and grassland (40%), and within 50 miles by grassland (52%) and bare soil (32%).
This report illustrates the typical weather in Qacha’s Nek, 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 2 weather stations near enough to contribute to our estimation of the temperature and dew point in Qacha’s Nek.
For each station, the records are corrected for the elevation difference between that station and Qacha’s Nek 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 Qacha’s Nek is computed as the weighted average of the individual contributions from each station, in addition to a contribution from the MERRA-2 reconstruction, corrected for the difference between the reference elevation of the MERRA-2 grid cell and the elevation of Qacha’s Nek.
The station weigths are proportional to the inverse of the distance between Qacha’s Nek and a given station.
The weight assigned to the MERRA-2 value depends on the distance from Qacha’s Nek to the nearest station, increasing from 0% at 150 kilometers to 100% at 200 kilometers. In this case, the MERRA-2 weight is 16%.
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.