Madison, Wisconsin, experiences a humid continental climate with warm to hot summers and cold winters.
Spring (March-May): Temperatures gradually increase throughout the spring, with high temperatures averaging from around 40°F (4°C) in early March to the 70s°F (21-26°C) by May. Rain is fairly common during the spring months.
Summer (June-August): Summers are generally warm to hot and can be humid. High temperatures average in the upper 70s to mid 80s°F (25-29°C), though heatwaves can push temperatures into the 90s°F (32+°C). This is also the city’s wettest season, though rainfall is usually spread out and does not overwhelm the days.
Fall (September-November): Fall sees temperatures drop from summer highs down to winter coolness, with high temperatures averaging from the 70s°F (21-26°C) in September to the 40s°F (4-9°C) in November. This season is generally drier than spring and summer, and you’ll also get the chance to see beautiful fall foliage.
Winter (December-February): Winters are cold, with high temperatures usually in the upper 20s to low 30s°F (-2 to 1°C), and lows often dropping into the teens°F (-9 to -8°C) or below. Snow is quite common, with the city averaging around 50 inches (127 cm) per year.
As for the best time to visit, it really depends on what you want to do:
- Summer is the peak tourist season, offering warm weather, a variety of festivals and events, and excellent conditions for outdoor activities like biking and boating.
- Fall is a great time to visit if you want to see the beautiful fall colors. The weather is also generally mild and comfortable.
- Winter can be a good time to visit if you enjoy winter sports like skiing or ice skating. However, be prepared for cold weather and potential snow.
- Spring sees the city thaw from winter and can be a nice time to visit, with generally mild weather and fewer tourists.