does it snow in carson city nevada

Does it snow in Carson City Nevada? Carson City, nestled at the base of the Sierra Nevada mountains, is famous for its abundant Wild West history and vibrant culture.

However, as winter approaches, people focus on the weather, and many wonder, “When will it snow in Carson City, NV?”

During the winter season, temperatures are cooler but still quite pleasant, with average highs reaching the 40s.

But, it is important to remember that the city is located below the snowy peaks, which is why it is natural to ask if the area will get any snow.

Let’s find out more about it now!

Yes, it does snow in Carson City, averaging about 17 inches, but you can find nearby resorts with much more snow for skiing and winter sports. 

Where Does It Snow in Carson City Nevada?

location carson city nevada snow

Carson City is located at an elevation of approximately 4,600 feet and typically experiences an average of 17 inches of snowfall each year.

However, just beyond the city limits, the Sierra Nevada mountains offer plenty of opportunities for snow sports and winter recreation.

If you are looking for a great place to experience snow near Carson City, we recommend checking out Mount Rose Ski Resort. It is conveniently located just 35 minutes away and is known for its prime snow conditions.

  • Mount Rose has a base elevation of 8,260 feet and a summit that reaches 10,776 feet. It receives an average of over 400 inches of snow per season.

If you are interested in cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, a great place to go is Spooner Lake in Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park.

It is located about 45 minutes away from Carson City. There are groomed trails that meander through pine forests, running alongside the frozen lake.

Moreover, Kirkwood Mountain Resort is located approximately one hour south of Carson City. It offers 2,300 acres of skiing and riding, with an average annual snowfall of over 600 inches. The resort’s base elevation is 7,800 feet.

Fact: Mount Rose provides 1,200 acres of ski terrain, offering breathtaking views of Lake Tahoe. 

How Much Snow Does Carson City Get?

amount of snow in carson city

The snowfall in Carson City is nowhere near many other places in the region, but it still gets quite a bit of snow in winter.

January is typically the month with the highest amount of snow. However, Carson City experiences major snowstorms and accumulates large amounts of snowless frequently.

This is because of its mild climate and lower elevation compared to the surrounding mountain regions.

On average, Carson City gets about 17 inches of snow each year. The amount is significantly less compared to the average annual rainfall in the US, which is 28 inches.

Here is a bit about how the weather in Carson City compares to the rest of the country:

Climate AverageUnited StatesCarson City
  Rainfall38.1 in.8.8 in.
  Snowfall27.8 in.17.0 in.
  Precipitation106.2 days42.9 days
  Sunny205 days253 days
  Avg. July High85.8°90.9°
  Avg. Jan. Low21.7°20.2°
  Elevation2443 ft.4682 ft.

On average, January receives the highest amount of snowfall, with an average of 5.4 inches. 

History of Snowfall in Carson City

carson city history of snowfall

Carson City does not experience major snowstorms very often, but there have been occasional instances of significant snowfall in the area.

The city experienced a winter storm in December 2009 that resulted in a significant amount of snowfall. 

A total of 18.6 inches of snow accumulated during this storm, which set a new record for the highest snowfall over a span of two days. It is uncommon for Carson City to experience snowstorms of this magnitude.

However, there have been many other weather events with snowfall going as high as 71 inches.

Here is a bit about the most snowfall in the history of Carson City, Nevada:

YearSnowfall (Inches)
Fact: December, February, and March are also known for typically experiencing snowfall during the winter months in Carson City, Nevada. 

Is Carson City a Good Place for Winter Vacations?

winter vacation in carson city

Carson City is a wonderful destination for a winter retreat. It offers a wide range of snow activities, a warm and inviting atmosphere, and the added bonus of nearby hot springs.

At Mount Rose Ski Tahoe, visitors have the option to enjoy skiing or snowboarding on the slopes. Additionally, they can also choose to go snowmobiling on the mountain trails or go snowshoeing through the beautiful pine forests.

If you have spent the day outside, you can cozy up by the fireplace at a nearby restaurant or take a leisurely walk through the city’s museums. The cold in the milder climate of Lake Tahoe is quite pleasant.

Overall, Carson City offers a wide range of options that cater to people of all ages and preferences, making it the perfect destination for everyone this winter. 

Can You Ski in Carson City Nevada?

ski in carson city nevada

Although the city itself does not receive much snow, you have the opportunity to immerse yourself in a picturesque winter wonderland by exploring the nearby mountains.

Carson City residents can be within a 1–2-hour drive from premier alpine skiing and snow destinations in the nearby high Sierra Nevada mountains.

Visitors who choose to stay in Carson City can enjoy the benefit of more affordable lodging options.

Despite this, they are still able to easily access the famous Lake Tahoe resorts, such as Heavenly Mountain or Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe, within a short 30-45 minute drive.

Best Ski Resorts in Carson City Nevada

carson city nevada ski resorts

Carson City is a great place to stay for a Tahoe ski trip because it offers easy access to amazing skiing and snowboarding terrain. Plus, you will not have to spend a fortune on accommodation costs.

Here are some good accommodation options to consider: 

#1. Hampton Inn & Suites Carson City

carson city hampton inn and suites

It is the perfect place to stay if you want to enjoy winter sports and attractions. It is conveniently located near ski resorts and recreational activities in the area. And the best part is that you will be in close proximity to Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe.

If you are searching for a winter vacation spot with slopes that are easily accessible, Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe is the perfect choice. It is conveniently located just 30 minutes away from Carson City.

Mt. Rose, which has a base elevation of 8,260 feet, receives an impressive amount of snow each year, totaling 350 inches. This abundant snowfall guarantees fantastic conditions throughout its expansive 1,200 acres of terrain.

The mountain is great for beginners, as it has gentle magic carpet lifts and more than a dozen novice runs that are perfect for learning.

Compared to other resorts in Tahoe, Mt. Rose provides excellent value.

Additionally, its convenient location near Carson City allows for easy access to the slopes without the expensive accommodation prices found in nearby resort towns.  

#2. My Place Hotel-Carson City, NV

carson city my place hotel

My Place Hotel-Carson City is the perfect place to stay if you want to enjoy winter sports. It offers full kitchens and is conveniently located near the Reno-Tahoe airport and the ski resorts of Lake Tahoe.

The pet-friendly hotel is only 45 minutes from Diamon Peak Ski Resort, making it a fantastic option for those looking to enjoy top-notch skiing and snowboarding without having to travel long distances.

Diamond Peak is a ski resort that offers a large skiable terrain, with 655 acres and a vertical drop of 1,840 feet. There are plenty of options for developing skills, with nearly half of the runs being intermediate.

Skiers who are more advanced can push their limits by exploring the glades and engaging in tree skiing. The resort receives significant snowfall, guaranteeing that its slopes are well-covered throughout the entire season.

Although Diamond Peak is smaller compared to some of the mega-resorts in Lake Tahoe, it still offers everything necessary for an enjoyable winter sports vacation.

#3. Gold Dust West

gold dust west

If you are looking for a great place to stay during your winter sports trip in the Carson City area, the Gold Dust West Hotel is yet another nice option to consider.

The hotel is conveniently located only 45 minutes away from Homewood Mountain Resort, a fantastic destination that boasts breathtaking views and exceptional skiing opportunities on the west shore of Lake Tahoe.

Homewood has an impressive expanse of land, spanning over 1,200 acres. It offers a wide variety of 67 runs, catering to different skill levels. 

From well-maintained slopes perfect for cruising to secret spots with untouched powder, Homewood has diverse terrain that can accommodate everyone’s abilities.

Fact: Homewood Mountain Resort is located on the leeward side of Ellis Peak, which means it is shielded from strong winds, resulting in enjoyable weather conditions.

How Cold Does It Get in Carson City Nevada?

carson city how cold get

In Carson City, the summers are scorching hot and bone-dry, while the winters are bitterly frigid and filled with snow.

Here is a bit about the average temperature in Carson City throughout the year:

Average Temp (F)32°F36°F42°F48°F56°F64°F71°F69°F62°F50°F39°F32°F

The summer season typically lasts from June to September, and during this time, the average high temperatures range from 80°F to 90°F.

July is the hottest month, with temperatures regularly reaching 88°F due to the scorching sun.

On the other hand, the low humidity offers a bit of respite from the scorching heat. Winter typically lasts from November to February and is characterized by frequent snowstorms and extremely cold temperatures below zero.

Here is a bit about the average high and low temperatures in Carson City:

Avg. Low (F)23°F27°F31°F35°F41°F47°F52°F50°F43°F35°F28°F23°F
Avg High (F)45°F50°F56°F62°F70°F80°F88°F87°F79°F67°F53°F44°F

 During the winter, the temperature drops below freezing overnight, typically averaging around 23°F. 

The Impact of Rainfall

rainfall carson city

In Carson City, the period from September to May experiences the highest amount of rainfall.

Among these months, February stands out as the wettest, with an average of 2.3 inches of rainfall.

During this rainy period, temperatures are reduced due to evaporative cooling. When rainwater evaporates from surfaces, it turns into water vapor and in the process, it takes away heat from the surroundings.

The cooling effect is most noticeable during hot summer days when a thunderstorm causes a significant temperature drop.  

Fact: In December, the temperatures drop significantly, with average highs reaching only 44°F and lows dropping to 23°F. 

Things to Explore in Carson City During Winter

carson city winter

There is so much to see and do when you plan your trip to Carson City in winter. Skiing is at its very best here, but there are other winter sports and landmarks to explore.

For instance: 

Go Snowshoeing

snowshoeing activity in carson city

Carson City is a top-notch destination for snowshoeing, offering options suitable for all abilities. It is the perfect place to explore the enchanting winter beauty at your own pace.

If you are new to snowshoeing near Carson City, Spooner Lake is a great option for beginners.

The route is not very crowded and it goes around the frozen lake, which is surrounded by pine trees covered in snow. The terrain is flat and the winter scenery is absolutely beautiful.

If you are an experienced snowshoer looking for a challenge, you can test your skills on the Ash to Kings Trail. This trail offers steeper inclines that wind through the beautiful mountains.

Although it can be demanding, it offers breathtaking Sierra Nevada vistas to reward those with an adventurous spirit.   

Fact: Riverview Park in Carson City offers trails for snowshoeing that the whole family can enjoy. 

Visit Carson Hot Springs Resort

carson hot springs

Once you have had a day full of winter adventures, take some time to relax and unwind by immersing yourself in the soothing warm mineral waters at Carson Hot Springs Resort.

The pools that are 98-100 degrees offer a soothing experience for tired muscles and joints. If you are looking for a more secluded experience, you might want to consider trying out the private indoor pools.

The pure mineral water of the historic resort is said to come from a depth of 35,000 feet below ground, making it widely regarded as the finest water in the Sierra Nevada region. 

Explore Museums in the Area

carson city museum

In Carson City, there are numerous museums and landmarks that allow you to explore and learn about its fascinating history.

The Nevada State Museum is a fascinating place showcasing various region artifacts. It also features a replica ghost town, giving visitors a glimpse into the past.

Additionally, the museum houses the historic Carson City Mint, adding to its rich historical significance. The Children’s Museum of Northern Nevada offers interactive educational experiences suitable for the whole family.

If you are a history enthusiast, you will absolutely love exploring the magnificent architecture and rich legislative history of the Nevada Capitol Building.   

Spend Time in Restaurants and Cafes

carson city restaurants and cafes

When winter arrives in Carson City and brings its chilly weather, you can find comfort and warmth for both your body and spirit by visiting one of the inviting restaurants in the area.

You can enjoy a cozy evening at Fox Brewpub by sitting next to the crackling fire pit on their patio while savoring a delicious and robust stout beer.

You can enjoy the delightful experience of savoring steaming cups of rich coffee or hot chocolate at Old World Coffee Lab or Comma Coffee.

These cozy cafes offer charming interiors that provide a warm and inviting refuge from the cold weather. 

You can treat yourself to delicious classic comfort foods, such as the renowned Awful Awful burger, at Carson Nugget.

Or you can indulge in the vibrant Southwestern flavors offered at Ole Ole Mexican Restaurant & Cantina. 

What is the Best Time to Plan Your Visit to Carson City, Nevada?

visiting carson city

If you are interested in combining a visit to Carson City with a mix of skiing, it is best to plan your visit between late November and April, which is the ski season.

If you are interested in engaging in outdoor sports around Lake Tahoe and experiencing the most favorable weather for sightseeing, we recommend considering the early summer months of June and early July, as well as September. 


Does it snow in Carson City Nevada? Carson City does receive snowfall, with an average annual accumulation of about 17 inches.

Although the city experiences a decent amount of snow, neighboring resorts such as Mount Rose Ski Resort provide fantastic skiing opportunities thanks to their annual snowfall of over 400 inches.

Spooner Lake in Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park is highly recommended if you are looking for a great place to go snowshoeing. Overall, Carson City is a great winter vacation destination for people of all ages and interests, despite its mild climate.

There are plenty of winter activities to enjoy in the city and it will never leave you disappointed.