In Which I Explain Bay Area Weather

Here’s the thing about Bay Area weather: It’s the same. Every year.

And not just a little the same. It is VERY MUCH THE SAME, right down to the week, year after year.*

So I’m completely befuddled when people are surprised by it. Complaints? No problem. If you’re not into it, I won’t argue with you, since taste is subjective—and as my beloveds know, I am 100% okay with complaining. (Also known as: Jewish.) But being surprised by Bay Area weather is like being surprised that puppies poop in shoes and oranges squirt you in the eye. Because while it may be many things (foggy, damp, bone-shivering), one thing Bay Area weather is NOT is surprising.

For your reference, a primer:


The rains start. Just a few, at first. The weather’s still pretty warm, though.


Some rain, but often surprisingly warm. Moving to chilly by the end of the month.


This is winter. Winter in the Bay Area is characterized by temperatures in the 50’s, overcast skies, and plenty of rain. Is it more rain than last year? No. Is it more rain than ever? No*. True, it may feel like a lot of rain. It’s not. It’s the same. As always. It’s called winter. Also known as The Rainy Season. You’ve been here before. Now you’re here again. Welcome back!


Spring’s a’ comin’. Things are getting warmer, but they’re not warm yet. Rains are still happening, though less often. You will want it to be warmer than it is. It will not be warmer than it is. Was it warmer than it was last year? No, it was not! Fancy that!


There is a very weird thing that happens every June, and that is this: For about two weeks, we have hot weather. 80’s and 90’s! Yes! I know! It’s weird! And it feels like it has never happened before! But it happens every year! Just like it is happening now! And will happen again! It has a name! And its name is June!


This is summer. Summer in the Bay Area is not like summer in other places. Summer here is like this: foggy and cold in the morning, warm in the afternoon (when the fog burns off), and foggy and cold in the evening (when the fog rolls back in). Do you need a scarf and hat at breakfast? Sometimes! Are you using your down comforter at night? Probably! Are you upset that you’re not getting a “real” summer? That’s insane! Because you never get one of those! We don’t have those here! They simply do not exist! No matter how much you want them to! Not until September and October, anyway. Which brings us to …


This is when things get warm in the Bay Area. How warm? 80’s, very frequently. Sometimes 90’s. Sometimes for a week at a time! There’s a great meteorological reason for this, having to do with the ocean temperature and the fog, etc. But we don’t need to worry about it. We just need to know that it will be warm, and sometimes very warm, during these two months. It’s not shocking! It’s not a surprise Indian summer! It’s not a miracle that you need to cherish, lest it never happen again! Because it WILL happen again! It happens every year! It’s just BAY AREA WEATHER!


Repeat. Verbatim.

*Exception: El NiƱo, 1997-1998. That was a fucking disaster.

5 Responses to “In Which I Explain Bay Area Weather”

  1. Liza says:

    Ha Ha! It’s like the weather here, in Portland. July 4 — Oct 31 — sunny (mostly, every day, highs in the 80s with occasional 90s, lows in the 50s). Nov 1 — June 30 — rainy (always, not downpours, more drizzly, cloudy always, highs in the 50-60 range, lows in the 40s, with a few 30s).

  2. Melissa says:

    And do people act surprised? I’ll bet they do.

  3. Jennifer says:


    I just read this and it is hilarious! I’m glad that I can laugh at myself, because I was one of the “surprised” folks when I lived there! So true what you wrote!

  4. admin says:

    Aw, Jen. Glad you could appreciate it!

  5. Sidney says:

    I loved this!! You are hilarious!

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