Rochester NY Snowfall Totals & Accumulation Averages
This page pulls together information on when, how much and how often Rochester, New York has snow.
There are data and descriptions here of how many days it snows and the total amount of snowfall that Rochester usually gets. There are also monthly and yearly counts of the days that the city normally has heavy snowstorms and deep snow accumulated on the ground. Plus there's information on when Rochester can expect the first and last snowfalls of the season.
The first set of monthly snow totals are averages for 2010 to 2019. All the other numbers are averages, based on climate data gathered from 1991 to 2020 at the Greater Rochester International Airport.
How Often it Snows in Rochester
The next two tables list monthly and yearly totals for amount of snow and how many days it snows at least 0.1 inches (0.25 centimetres).
These averages don't show how much Rochester's snowfall varies from year to year.
In December, for instance, one in four years totals over 29.3 inches of snow. Another 25 percent of years receive less than 14.1 inches for the month.
Similarly in January, fresh snowfall in the heaviest years amounts to over 33.6 inches, while the lightest years get less than 17.9 inches.
Snow in February ranges from over 28.6 inches in heavy snowfall years to under 14.9 inches in light years.
When Rochester Has Its First & Last Snowfalls
Rochester's first snowfall of winter usually arrives in November, although a rare snowstorm can show up in October.
The season's last snowfall typically happens in April, but fresh snow in May is not unheard of.
Rochester is normally free of snow every year from June to September.
How Many Snowstorms Rochester Gets
Most days of snowfall in Rochester result in just a skiff of less than an inch left on the ground. For 29 days a year on average, the amount of new snow totals at least an inch.
Snowstorms of over five inches a day normally occur a three or four times a year. But major blizzards that dump ten inches or more in one day are rare events that don't happen every year.
How Much Snow Normally Accumulates in Rochester
For well over half of winter days, Rochester has at least an inch of snow on the ground.
Typically on seven days in a winter, the snow covering Rochester accumulates to ten or more inches deep, and in some years builds up twenty inches or more.
Jay Lawrimore, Ron Ray, Scott Applequist, Bryant Korzeniewski, Matthew Menne. 2016. Global Summary of the Month and Year, Version 1.0. NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information.
NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI). Climate Normals.