ROCHESTER, NY (WROC) – Did you know that Rochester, NY averages more cloudy days than sunny ones throughout the year? Out of roughly 365 days in a year, we see 61 clear, 104 partly cloudy, and 200 cloudy days in all.

According to annual percentage of possible sunshine from NOAA data through 2004, Yuma, Arizona is the “sunniest” city with 90% annual possible sun on average. Rochester averages 51%.

Juneau, Alaska ranks as the least sunny city, which is mostly due to the location being so far north that they receive much less total daylight throughout different points of the year.

Fun fact: On their shortest day of the year, Juneau only receives ~6 hours and 22 minutes of daylight!

Quillayute, Washington ranks as second least sunny city with 33% possible sunshine, which is more likely due to actual cloud cover over the amount of daylight.

Climate data found HERE

. . .

November is one of the cloudiest months of the year for Rochester, and it’s not too often you get a completely clear, sunny day across Western New York. In fact, on average Rochester sees just 2 clear days, 6 partly cloudy days, and 22 cloudy days in November. Rochester’s average percent of possible sunshine for November is ~25%.

Alongside November, December only averages one more cloudy day than November, which may very well just be due to that one extra day in December. These months also simply fall during the time of year where we have a much more active jet stream nearby, and we receive all sorts of weather systems and precipitation types to fill our skies.

The month with the most amount of sunny days for Rochester is July and August, with these months typically getting 8 clear, 12 partly cloudy, and 11 or 12 cloudy days. Which still comes out to less sunny days than cloudy ones, go figure.

November 2020

This year saw more clear days than we have in the past 5 years, and by a decent amount. Including the 29th of November where we had partly cloudy to sunny skies all day long, and going by the likelihood of a cloudy forecast for Monday, it’s likely we see another count for either clear or partly cloudy skies this month. Due to the increase in high level clouds, it could go either way. However, that still beats the past 4 years of clear skies by a decent amount. Yes, we were still more cloudy than not, but compared to previous years I’d say we got pretty lucky with seeing more of the sun this month than we typically do, especially for it being one of the cloudiest months of the year.

Until next time, sun!

~Meteorologist Christine Gregory