Sunniest Places During Winter in the US

Arid regions of Arizona, Texas and other western states dominate the list of places where the sun shines most during winter in the United States. Sunny winters also happen in Florida and Kansas.

Yuma in western Arizona is the sunniest place in the United States during December, January and February.

The desert city is the only spot on record where the sun shines for over 80 percent of winter's daylight hours and where more than half the days are clear.

Out of 164 places that do measure sun, just 20 see the sun's rays hitting the ground in winter for at least two-thirds of the time on average between sunrise and sunset.

Of course, places located farther south have more minutes of daylight in a winter day and so more time available for the sun to shine. That means 66 percent sun, for instance, works out to more hours of sunshine at Key West in southern Florida than at more northern Reno or Dodge City.

Places with the most sunshine on average during December, January and February
Place % Sunshine
Yuma, Arizona 84
Tucson, Arizona 80
El Paso, Texas 79
Las Vegas, Nevada 79
Phoenix, Arizona 78
Redding, California 76
Flagstaff, Arizona 74
Key West, Florida 74
Pueblo, Colorado 73
San Diego, California 72
Albuquerque, New Mexico 72
Los Angeles, California 71
Denver, Colorado 69
Amarillo, Texas 68
Ely, Nevada 68
Midland-Odessa, Texas 67
Roswell, New Mexico 66
Dodge City, Kansas 66
Miami, Florida 66
Reno, Nevada 66

Most Clear Days in Winter

Less than a fifth of places around the US that record cloud cover have mainly clear skies in winter for ten or more days a month. When measuring weather, clear skies means cloud covering up to 30 percent of the sky during daylight hours.

Places that average at least ten clear days a month during December, January and February
Location Clear Days a Month
Yuma, Arizona 16
El Paso, Texas 14
Las Vegas, Nevada 14
Los Angeles, California 14
Phoenix, Arizona 14
Tucson, Arizona 14
Alamosa, Colorado 13
Albuquerque, New Mexico 13
Clayton, New Mexico 13
Roswell, New Mexico 13
Santa Maria, California 13
Winslow, Arizona 13
Amarillo, Texas 12
Bishop, California 12
Flagstaff, Arizona 12
Kahului, Hawaii 12
Long Beach, California 12
Lubbock, Texas 12
Midland, Texas 12
Odessa, Texas 12
San Angelo, Texas 12
San Diego, California 12
Abilene, Texas 11
Colorado Springs, Colorado 11
Dodge City, Kansas 11
Fort Myers, Florida 11
Goodland, Kansas 11
Key West, Florida 11
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 11
Pueblo, Colorado 11
Wichita Falls, Texas 11
Apalachicola, Florida 10
Concordia, Kansas 10
Dallas, Texas 10
Del Rio, Texas 10
Denver, Colorado 10
Fort Worth, Texas 10
Greenville, South Carolina 10
Spartanburg, South Carolina 10
Tampa, Florida 10
Tulsa, Oklahoma 10
Waco, Texas 10
Wichita, Kansas 10
Wilmington, North Carolina 10

Not many locations have weather stations that keep track of cloud cover or sunshine. Some sunny places, such as Palm Springs in California, are not included here because they don't officially keep sunshine records.


National Climatic Data Center. Comparative Climatic Data.

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