On the last tour I gave, a student asked me about weather here in Rochester. I answered my usual answer but he replied, "What is it REALLY like?" Many students I've talked to are very interested in the seasons here and what they need to prepare for. So I will try to go into detail about each season...starting with the dreaded winter...(if you keep reading, you'll realize it's actually not that bad!)
Winter in Rochester, as you are all aware, is pretty snowy. The average temperature between December and February is about 32 degrees F - give or take. The crazy thing about Rochester is that one day it may be 15 degrees and the next day could be 60 - I kid you not! It keeps you on your toes for what to wear each day, that's for sure. Rochester is located near Lake Ontario (one of the Great Lakes), so the wind is a little bit stronger on some days - just bring a nice wind-proof jacket. I don't want to scare anyone away, so before you run to the nearest Sports Authority to prepare to Antarctica, don't stress and let me tell you winter here is not that bad! Fun fact - I am actually allergic to the cold. It's called Cold Urticaria (look it up), so I get hives when my skin hits the cold and go into shock if I'm too cold. But I'm still here, happy and alive, so I promise that it's not that cold! Winters here are great, expecially when the holiday season creeps up on you, being a little bit chilled with hot cocoa in your hand, fuzzy socks on your toes and a little red nose - just makes you happy. The good thing about it being cold is that snow comes with it! We usually get a few feet of snow maximum, and most days you wake up with a fresh new sheet of sparkling snow. Any city in upstate New York is full of winter activities, so you won't get cabin fever here. Overall, winter is cold anywhere but Rochester makes the most of it, and it becomes beautiful with the snow on campus.
Spring! Spring is short, because winter blends into summer so quickly. But Rochester has many flowering trees in the spring. On the first nice day, you'll see so many new faces because everyone just wants to be outside. Spring's temperatures changes the most - sometimes it will be in the 50s and then in the 80s, so it's a good mix to ease you into summer. There is a light breeze that cools you off, and it always seems to be sunny in the spring. The thunderstorms are amazing because our humidity level is relatively high, so if it is storming you definitely have to look out your window.
Summer! Like I said, Rochester is fairly humid so even if it is only 70 in the summer, it may feel a lot hotter (which is awesome in my opinion). The average temperatures range from 75 to about 85 depending on the year. There are a few beaches nearby (Charlotte, Irondequoit, and Hamlin), so if it's blue skies for miles, you can lay out and swim there. There is still a nice breeze to cool you off in the summer. The grass here gets extremely green and the trees seem massive with their new leaves.
And fall! Fall is gorgeous is upstate New York! We offer the ideal postcard image of fall, with the leaves changing color on every single tree you see. Our falls don't usually get that cold until December. It is more of a heavy sweatshirt/sweater weather kind of season. Fall gets a little gloomy, but to me drizzly weather = fall time so I actually love it. And there are always sunny days each week for when you want to go pumpkin or apple picking.
Overall, Rochester has so many different weather experiences, and I think that's the perfect fit for anyone. You are able to have fun in each season and enjoy them all. When each new season changes over, you fall more in love because it is a change and a time for new activities.