2023 by the Numbers

By Ryan Knapp

January has arrived, a time to not only look forward to what might occur in the coming year, but also look back and reflect on the previous year. Looking back at weather stats, I would summarize 2023 weather conditions on the summit as warm, wet (but not snowy), and foggy. To find out why I’ve chosen these words, let’s look back at some of the stats from 2023.

Our average temperature for 2023 was 30.4°F (-0.9°C), which is 2.4°F above the 1991-2020 30-year normal for our station. This would make the annual average temperature of 2023 tied with 2012 for the highest average annual temperature in our dataset (1932-present). Our warmest temperature recorded in 2023 was 66°F (18.9°C), which occurred on July 6th. Our coldest temperature recorded in 2023 was 47°F below (-47°F/-43.9°C), which occurred on February 4th.

In terms of total liquid precipitation, from January to December of 2023, the summit of Mount Washington received 113.76 inches, which was 22.53 inches above the 1991-2020 30-year normal for our location. The 113.76 inches of precipitation makes it the 12th wettest year (January to December) in our dataset (1932-present). From January to December of 2023, the summit received 266.1 inches of snow, which was 15.7 inches below the 1991-2020 30-year normal for our location.

In terms of winds, for 2023 our average was 33.9 mph, which was 1.0 mph below the 1991-2020 30-year normal average for our location. Our highest gust recorded for 2023 was 132 mph, which occurred on December 18th. From January to December, we had 145 days which had gusts of 73 mph or greater and of those days, 33 days had gusts that were 100 mph or greater.

As for our weather during 2023, we averaged 35% of the possible sunshine. The summit had 11 days that were noted as clear or mostly clear, and there were 59 partly sunny days, with the remaining 295 days being filed under mostly cloudy, cloudy, or obscured (fog). We had 328 days with at least some amount of fog recorded during a 24-hour period. We had 146 days with rain and 173 days with snow.

Night of Dec 31, 2023 as the moon was rising on undercast skies looking north.

Other notable stats that landed in the top 3 for any given month/season/year from 2023 are as follows:

  • January 2023 had an average temperature of 16.1°F, making it the warmest January average in our dataset (1932-present). Previous record was 16.0°F originally set in January 2006.
  •  The 47°F below (-47°F/-43.9°C) recorded on February 4th
    • Equaled (tied) our location’s all-time record low (1932-present). The record was originally set on 29 January 1934.
    • Set a new monthly record low for the month of February (1932-present). The previous record of 46°F below (-46°F/-43.3°C) was originally set on 15 February 1943 and equaled on 3 February 2023.
    • Set a new daily record low for February 4th (1932-present). The previous daily record low of 35 below (-35°F/-37.2°C) was recorded on 4 February 1963.
  • June 2023 monthly snowfall of 8.4 inches set a new monthly snowfall record for the month of June (1932-present). The previous record of 8.1” was set in June 1959.
  • June 2023 monthly precipitation total of 17.30” was the second largest precipitation total for the month of June. The greatest June precipitation total of 19.96” was measured in June 1998.
  • July monthly precipitation of 17.08” set a new monthly precipitation record for the month of July (1932-present). The previous record of 16.85” set in July 1996.
  • August 2023 monthly precipitation total of 14.01” was the second largest precipitation total for the month of August. The greatest August precipitation total of 20.69” was measured in August 1991.
  • Meteorological summer (June 1 to August 31) 2023 received 48.39 inches of precipitation, setting a new meteorological summer precipitation record. The previous record of 37.80 inches was originally set in summer 1998.
  • Meteorological summer (June 1 to August 31) 2023 was the second greatest precipitation season in our dataset (1932-present). Meteorological winter (December 1 to February 28/29) of 1969 remains the greatest precipitation season with 50.26 inches recorded.
  • December 2023 had an average temperature of 20.7 °F, making it the second warmest December average in our dataset (1932-present). The warmest record is 24.4°F originally set in December 2015.

If interested in additional weather data, please check out our F-6 page which is updated nightly, our Mount Washington Weather Archives, our Current Summit Conditions, and our 48-hour and Higher Summits Forecast. If you need data for research purposes, you can submit a request here.

If interested in supporting the work we do at our weather station, please consider donating at https://mountwashington.org/donate/. 

Ryan Knapp, Weather Observer/Staff Meteorologist

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