If you plan to move or visit LA, it makes sense to evaluate the climate there. Generally, Southern California has a temperate climate, and the Los Angeles weather tends to the sub-arid conditions in the city. Los Angeles is located in a coastal basin with mountain ranges in its surroundings. These protect the town against extreme summer and winter conditions.
According to the data over the last 23 years compiled by Kelly Norton (via The Atlantic Cities), the three cities having the most pleasant weather in the nation are San Diego, Oxnard, and Los Angeles. This guide will help you make better decisions to pack and plan before you catch a flight for LA.
Overall weather in Los Angeles
The climate of LA is mild-to-hot around the year, with frequent dry spells. It is also termed the Mediterranean climate, a category of dry subtropical climate. There are seasonal changes in the rainfall, having a winter rainy season and dry summer rains.
LA contains microclimates where the day temperature can vary up to 36 °F (20 °C) within the inland areas like San Gabriel Valley and San Fernando Valley. The city is quite polluted. These pollutants can accumulate in the dry season, extending from May to October. The possible waves of bad weather often occur from December to March. There is also a nuisance in the climate of Los Angeles, which Santa Ana represents.
It has a hot and dry wind blowing from the northeast. It blows for some days from the deserts of Arizona and California. These winds pass over the mountains from where they slowly descend.
These wins are likely to occur in autumn and winter but blow all year. When these winds blow, the temperature can go beyond 25 °C (77 °F), and sometimes hits 30 °C (86 °F), during the winter. Meanwhile, it goes beyond 35 °C (95 °F), and sometimes up to 40 °C (104 °F), from April to October.
This wind also causes heat waves during July, August, September, and October. It is also essential to note that Santa Ana winds can also spread fires during extreme weather.
1. Summers in LA
The summer season in LA is warm to hot or completely dry. The summer temperature pattern begins in late June or at the beginning of July. It lasts up to September or October, and sometimes it may start at the end of May.
During the summers, the ocean plays the role of a natural air conditioner. For instance, in Santa Monica, at LA International Airport, the daytime temperature is cool and stays around 24/25 °C (75/77 °F). These high temperatures don’t hit 30 °C (86 °F) within the central city district.
The hills around the city experience scorching heat during the summer season. Although the temperature at sea is lower, it remains around 25 °C (77 °F).
If you plan to visit the desert during summers, keep in mind that the temperature will gradually increase. The high temperature in Riverside and San Bernardino usually is 25 °C (77 °F). On the other hand, Palm Springs, further away from Los Angeles, has scorching temperatures. The high temperature in this area is usually 40/42 °C (104/108 °F).
The temperature within LA is acceptable during summers. Nonetheless, when Santa Ana winds blow, the differences are reduced, and the temperature seems the same everywhere.
2. Autumn in LA
The weather in Los Angeles is dry but bearable during autumn. The daytime temperature here may be in the low 80s F (27-28 C) at the start of October. This gradually falls into mid-70s F (24-25 C) at the end of October.
In this season, the mild and sunny days follow each other, and when the Santa Ana winds blow, there can be some harsh weather conditions. These winds create a substantial impact on the climate of LA.
October’s late-night and early morning temperatures can be in the lower 60s F (16-17 C) at the start of the month, which later moves into the mid to upper 50s F (13-14 C) at the end of the month.
3. Winter in LA
December to March demonstrates a mild spring-like season. There are sunny and pleasant days compelling people to hang outdoors.
However, the temperature can hit freezing figures (0 °C or 32 °F) once the cold air flows. The rainfall in this season happens in short spells of bad weather. Overall the rain is not abundant, but there could be some waves of extreme weather when rain is heavier than usual.
In the LA winter season, the average high temperature ranges from 63° in Santa Monica and Los Angeles (airport) to 66-68° in Burbank and San Fernando. Heavy snowfall can also occur in the nearby mountains.
As mentioned earlier, there could be more rainfall in winters compared to the other seasons. The Santa Ana winds don’t stop blowing, and the temperature can exceed 77° or reach 86°.
The San Gabriel Mountains at the north of Los Angeles may experience snowfall. The highest peak on these mountains is Mount San Antonio, 3067 meters. These mountains are covered with snow and display a beautiful view of the horizon. They add scenic beauty to the cold climate of LA.
The Santa Ana wind can impact the cold weather too. It can bring the temperatures to 25 °C (77 °F) or above.
4. Spring in LA
Spring is one of the best seasons to visit Los Angeles. It extends from April to June, and the temperature is warm and sunny. A phenomenon called June Gloom may occur in May or June. It happens in the morning and is characterized by damp and cloudy weather. Sometimes, there is a fog that is accompanied by a drizzle.
This drizzle is formed on the sea and later invades the central area of Los Angeles. The phenomenon occurs due to a contrast between the sea and land wind pressures. The sea stays cold, and the mainland eventually gets warmer.
The range of daily temperature during April is between 50 °F (10 °C) and 72 °F (22 °C). The same conditions persist in May, making it a city that offers incredible sightseeing and wandering on the streets. There are frequent fogs at the end of May.
Packing for the weather in Los Angeles
It may be nicknamed the City of Angels, but LA is famous for its A-list fashion. If you are headed towards this West Coast city, you should be prepared for the different climatic conditions in LA.
Following are the attires you need in each season:
1. Packing for Summers in LA
Breathable clothing is a must-have to deal with the Summers in LA. Clothes like tank tops and t-shirts will help you face the scorching heat without burning yourself up.
You can cover your legs with shorts or leggings.
2. Packing for Spring in LA
A cardigan or a light sweater is the perfect outerwear for springs in Los Angeles. You will barely see people wearing a raincoat despite the frequent rains.
All they carry here is an umbrella and a light jacket. Besides this, comfortable flats, booties, and sandals are the perfect footwear for the spring in LA.
3. Packing for Winter in LA
You will find that people here wear the same tees and tank tops in the Los Angeles Winter season. However, they keep their layer game strong to fight the frigid weather.
You can bring the same dresses and tops from the last season, but you should have enough layers to stay warm. The chances of wearing shorts and skirts in this season are pretty low. Consider packing jeans and leggings to keep your legs covered.
4. Packing for Fall in LA
The clothes in autumn may vary according to the months. For example, t-shirts and tank tops are perfect for September and early October.
You have to switch to thicker fabrics and long sleeves at the end of October and early December. Even though you can wear skirts and shorts in the fall, you will find yourself more comfortable in jeans and leggings.
Also, you better check out the climate in LA today before you step outside.
Los Angeles has a Mediterranean climate, and it has no rain in the summer season. The average high temperature is 29 degrees Celsius (84 °Fahrenheit), and the lowest temperature is 18 degrees Celsius (65.6 °F) during summers. The year-round warm weather makes it a perfect city to visit whenever you like. The climate of LA may vary, but overall the conditions are bearable for everyone.
You are likely to find pleasant weather during January, February, March, April, May, and November. The temperature in this month varies between 20 degrees Celsius (68°F) and 25 degrees Celsius (77°F). Los Angeles is one of the main tourist attractions. It also provides multiple opportunities for people with diverse interests. If you plan to visit the city or move here, you should study its climate and evaluate if the temperature is bearable for you.
On a general note, the climate of LA is quite decent and accommodating. You will find yourself adjusting to the weather in no time. But you must have all your essentials at hand and know about the best places in the city to live and eat.
The packing list could go on and on, but you know all your personal needs well. Now that we are done discussing the climate in Los Angeles tell us how you plan to pack for it?