What’s Winter in California Like? 3 Ways to Prepare

What’s Winter in California Like 3 Ways to Prepare

How cold does California get? Well, California’s lowest recorded winter temperature was -45°F in Boca on January 20th, 1937. If you didn’t think winter in California could get that cold, then you are very much mistaken!

Preparing for winter in California is like cooking a meal for someone with dietary requirements. Unless you know what those dietary requirements are, how can you know what to cook?

And unless you specify which part of the state, it will be difficult to prepare for California temperatures in winter.

Lucky for you, here are some ways you can prepare for winters in California no matter where you are living or staying in The Golden State.

Some Places are Freezing

You already know that winters in California can get cold, but only some parts of the state dip below freezing.

Here is a general guide detailing the average temperatures in different parts of the state:

  • San Francisco = Highs of 60°F/Lows of 46°F
  • Los Angeles = Highs of 68°F/Lows of 48°F
  • Lake Tahoe = Highs of 44°F/Lows of 19°F
  • Death Valley National Park = 74°F/Lows of 39°F
  • Yosemite National Park = 53°F/Lows of 27°F

So, whether you need to dig out your puffy jacket or not depends on if you are by the beach, in the mountains, or staying in the north or south.

If you’re wondering how to prepare your home for winter, consider investing in an HVAC. Even though winter in California can get cold, you know that the temperatures will rise again in summer!

It’s the Rainy Season

Wintertime in California means rain. For some areas like San Francisco, this means days and days of downpours. Whereas in some places like Los Angeles, this means flash showers.

Either way, get organized with winter preparedness and never leave the house without an umbrella. If you’re not used to driving in the rain, take it slow as the roads can get slippy.


But at the same time, don’t forget to pack sunscreen if you’re visiting California in winter as a tourist. It might rain, yes, but the sun is also likely to make an appearance.

Beware of Road Closures

Planning on visiting a couple of California national parks this winter? Be mindful that there are some annual winter road closures and, depending on the weather, other roads might close as well.

The highways to Sequoia National Park and Kings Canyon National Park always close in winter. And you don’t want to drive through Tioga Pass to reach Yosemite National Park because that will also close for winter.

If there is a risk of mudslides, Highway 1 might close around Big Sur. You might want to leave that Pacific Coast Highway road trip until the spring!

Winter in California Is a Unique Experience

Florida has year-round sunshine and Colorado has epic mountains, but winter in California has the best of all seasons. As long as you prepare, you will have a great experience.

Want to know how to save money on your bills this winter or fix up your home so it’s cute and cozy? Browse our lifestyle and home improvement tips for more useful advice!

What’s Winter in California Like? 3 Ways to Prepare
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