Rhode Island’s Weather and Climate
Rhode Island has a moist continental climate, with four distinct seasons. Its weather is tempered by sea winds, particularly in the Seaboard Lowland, which has a more moderate climate than the rest of New England. The average annual temperature is about 50o F (10o C) in various parts of the state.
At Providence the average January temperature is 28.6o F (-1.9 o C), and the average July temperature is 72.2o F (22.3o C). The average annual precipitation (rain and melted snow) there is 42.7 inches (108 centimeters), including 39.2 inches (100 centimeters) of snowfall. Moisture is evenly distributed throughout the year. The climate of Block Island is somewhat more moderate than that of Providence, both in winter and in summer, with much less snowfall. In the northern upland region the growing season ranges from 100 to 125 days. Near the coast it ranges from 175 to 200 days.
Rhode Island's weather often changes suddenly because the state is located near the meeting place of many storm tracks. The worst storms were a great gale in 1815, the 1938 hurricane, and a severe blizzard in 1978.
Best Time To Visit Rhode Island
Narragansett bay and the Atlantic Ocean play an important role in determining Rhode Island Weather. In winter the temperature is considerably moderate, and a large number of snow storms drop their precipitation in the form of rain rather than snow. Summer days that would otherwise be uncomfortably warm are cooled by refreshing sea breezes. Late summer and early fall occasionally bring hurricane watches to the area. Throughout the year are coastal storms which produce the most severe weather. In general, Rhode Island weather is very unpredictable and can greatly range in temperature from day to day.
Average Temperature (Degrees F): Low January 28.9; High July 72.8
Average Humidity: January 63.5%; July 56.3%
Total Precipitation (Water)=45.3″
Late-spring, late-summer and early-fall are excellent months for visiting Providence, unless you want to enjoy sea resorts life in summer. Since Fall's foliage is particularly popular and many weekenders demand New England in this period, you may want to avoid Autumn's weekends.
WHEN NOT TO COME TO PROVIDENCE
You should avoid the winter months, when temperatures attain very low levels. Take also into account that July and August may be uncomfortable due to humidity and high temperatures. It snows and rains slightly more in Rhode Island than in New York; the average temperatures are also lower in Rhode Island.
Precipitation Rhode Island has no regular “rainy” or “dry” season, with precipitation fairly evenly distributed throughout the year on one out of every three days. The annual average is little more than 42 inches i both rain and snow, but can vary 25 inches to 65 inches. Occasionally droughts are experienced during summer months. Thunderstorms are responsible for much of the rainfall from May through August.
Snowfall The first measurable snowfall of winter generally comes toward the end of November but may be as late as January. The last snow of the season is about the middle of March. The month of greatest snowfall is usually February but January and March are close to seconds. It is unusual for the ground to remain well covered with snow for any long period of time.