Why I Love Sacramento Weather

October 22, 2022

I’ve lived in Sacramento for about a year and a half. I’m divorced with a 5yo son and a 3yo daughter. And I absolutely love Sacramento weather.

This is why.

It’s so damn sunny. Sacramento is the third-most sunny city in the US, right after Phoenix and Las Vegas. But it’s 10-15 degrees cooler in the summer here than those cities.

Put bluntly: I’m not a fan of winter. Cold, dark weather gets me down. That is not a problem here.

Just being outside in spring and fall is fun. I used to live in Berkeley. Berkeley is great for hiking — but not so great for just being outside. We tried to eat outside in April. It was 65, wet, and windy. We inevitably got cold and came inside.

The summer is a lot of fun — if you know what to do. I lived in the Bay Area for most of my adult life. My biggest worry about Sacramento was the summers. A year and a half in, I’ve figured it out.

  • When it’s the hottest, jump in the pool. I moved to an apartment complex with a pool. Then my kids begged me to take them swimming. Soon, I realized that any temperature over 95 degrees is fine, as long as you’re in the water. 

  • There are lots of trees and large, shady parks. This depends a bit on the neighborhood, but I’ve found that most areas built 20+ years ago have a decent amount. Here’s a map. I’ve found that my kids have fun in shady parks in the late afternoon and early evenings even on 95-degree days. 

  • It’s a dry heat. Unlike places east of the Mississippi, it’s not muggy here. My sister lives in Chicago. She tells me that 80 degrees there is like 90-95 here.

  • It’s cool in the mornings and evenings. We had a heat wave over Labor Day with temperatures over 110. It was still 65 at night. That morning I took the kids on a hike in the morning, went swimming with them in the afternoon, and ate dinner outside at Tower Cafe at 8:30 with my sister and her boyfriend.

Here’s my rough schedule for being outside:

High °F # days Month Outside activities
105 10 Jul/Aug Park before 10am, pool in the afternoon
95 60 Jun-Sep Park before noon, pool in the afternoon, shady park after 6
85 105 Apr-Jun, Sep-Oct Hike before noon, shady park in the afternoon
75 60 Mar, Oct Park or hike anytime
65 60 Nov, Feb Park or hike anytime after 10am, bring a sweater
55 60 Dec/Jan Park or hike anytime after 10am, bring a jacket


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Written by Sam Bhagwat, cofounder & chief strategy officer at Gatsby; programmer, analyst, writer; follow me on Twitter!