National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

The following tables show the climate information for Rapid City, Lead, Gillette, Winner and Lemmon on Christmas, as well as the weather at the Rapid City Airport for the past 10 Christmas Days. Record highs around the area have reached the 50s and 60s, with record lows in the teens and 20s below zero. The places listed all saw a white Christmas last year except for Winner, which had a little bit of snow on the ground from snowfall a few days before. Of the five sites listed, white Christmases have been most frequent in Lead, occurring 90% of the time. Last year marked the most consecutive white Christmases on record for the Rapid City NWS office, 5 years. The Rapid City Airport received about 5 inches of snow last Christmas, but had only an inch of snow on the ground for the morning measurement.

Temperature (°F)

Rapid City*

Lead

Gillette

Winner

Lemmon

Highest

60 (1963)

55 (2005)

52 (1980, 1947)

66 (1979)

53 (1963)

Lowest

-21 (1983)

-13 (1934)

-28 (1983)

-20 (1983)

-24 (1983)

Average High

37

35.3

34

33

29

Average Low

13

16.8

13

12

9

Precipitation (in.)

Rapid City

Lead

Gillette

Winner

Lemmon

Max Precip.

0.41 (2016)

1.11 (2009)

0.30 (2016)

0.85 (1964)

0.30 (1960,2016)

Days Measured Precip.

29 times or 23%

35 times or 32%

22 times or 19%

12 times or 10%

14 times or 13%

Max Snowfall

5.7 (2016)

26.0 (2009)

5.5 (1921,2016)

8.5 (1964)

6.0 (2009)

Days Measured Snow

27 times or 21%

34 times or 32%

22 times or 19%

10 times or 10%

9 times or 8%

Max Snow Depth

8 (1996)

33 (1993)

19 (1996)

21 (1951)

30 (1966)

White Christmases (1”+ snow depth)

29 times or 41%

61 times or 90%

37 times or 54%

31 times or 56%

52 times or 65%

Most Recent White Christmas

2016 (5.7”)

2016 (3”)

2016 (5.5”)

2015 (3”)

2016 (3”)

Most Consecutive White Christmases

5 years

(2012-2016)

10 years

(2007-2016)

6 years

(1995-2000)

6 years

(1980-1985)

9 years

(1966-1974)

Most Consecutive Green Christmases

8 years

(1952-1959)

3 years

(2001-2003)

6 years

(1954-1959,
2001-2006)

6 years

(1971-1976)

5 years

(2003-2007)

Year Temp and Precip Records Began

1888

1909

1902

1910

1909

Year Snow Depth Records Began

1947

1948

1948

1948**

1909**

*Data for Rapid City was compiled from the office’s three locations: the original downtown Weather Bureau Office (WBO) data goes from 1888-1942; the office moved to the airport in 1942, and relocated to East Rapid City in 1995. Average highs and lows were calculated based on averaging those of the three different sites. Snow depth was not available until a few years after the station moved to the airport, so the white Christmas percentage was calculated since 1947.

**12 Christmas days of snow depth data were missing for Winner, and 28 were missing for Lemmon. These were not included in the percentage calculation.

Weather at the Rapid City Airport on the Last 10 Christmas Days

Date

High Temperature (°F)

Low Temperature (°F)

Average Temperature

(°F)

Precipitation

(in.)

Snowfall

(in.)

Snow Depth

(in.)

2016 21 9 15 0.35 5.0

1

2015

28

9

18.5

0.20

3.4

T

2014

34

21

27.5

0.14

3.1

3

2013

35

18

26.5

0.00

0.0

0

2012

7

-7

0.0

0.03

0.6

2

2011

49

20

34.5

0.00

0.0

0

2010

28

17

22.5

0.00

0.0

T

2009

13

3

8.0

0.20

2.1

2

2008

35

12

23.5

0.00

0.0

2

2007

35

15

25.0

0.01

0.5

1

2006

42

9

25.5

0.00

0.0

0

 A few places may see some light snow on Christmas but most places still should have snow on the ground from over the weekend snowfall.