Washington DC might not get anywhere near as much snow as areas farther north, but a decent snowfall has a way of turning the city’s landmarks into a winter wonderland.
When we get big snowfalls they tend to be in January in February. The biggest snowstorm on record, known as the Knickerbocker Storm, was in late-January 1922. More recently, some of the biggest have come in late-January 2016 (dubbed by locals as Snowzilla), and double-whammy winter storms just before Christmas in 2009 (Snowpocalypse) and followed about six weeks later by an even bigger storm in early February 2010 (Snowmageddon).
Due to a confluence of factors, including that the DC area doesn’t have the infrastructure and snow budgets of some snowier regions, as well as a large portion of the very large population relying on above-ground transportation on roads and rail, even relatively minor snowstorms can have a crippling effect.
But there’s also a lot of open space for large blankets of snow to form and frame the area’s famous landmarks.
Photos of Washington DC in the Snow
Washington DC Visitor Guides
If you're coming in from out of town, here are some of the most popular guidebooks that can help you make the most of your visit.
- Elise Hartman Ford
- Publisher: FrommerMedia
- DK Eyewitness
- Publisher: DK Eyewitness Travel
- Lonely Planet, Karla Zimmerman, Virginia Maxwell, Amy C Balfour
- Publisher: Lonely Planet
- Van Dam Stephan
- Publisher: VanDam, Inc.
And here are some interesting options for less traditional guidesbooks if you'd like an emphasis on exploring DC on foot or diving into some of the region's rich history.
- NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
- Barbara Noe Kennedy