does it snow in cottonwood az

Does it snow in Cottonwood AZ? Cottonwood is a charming town located in Arizona’s picturesque Verde Valley.

People flock to this historic town to discover its wineries, shops, and restaurants. However, people often question, “How cold does it get in Cottonwood, Arizona?”

This desert community is famous for its sunny weather and outdoor activities, so it is fascinating to know the answer to, “Does it snow in Cottonwood, Arizona?”

Join us as we explore the amount of snowfall that Cottonwood receives and discover what winter is like in this part of the world.

Yes, it does snow in Cottonwood, AZ, but it is relatively infrequent, which means you may have to visit nearby places to find resorts and enjoy winter sports. 

Where Does It Snow in Cottonwood AZ?

cottonwood places that snow

It is possible to get snow in Cottonwood, AZ, but it is usually not a lot. At least, it is not that much to facilitate winter sports.

Cottonwood is located in the beautiful state of Arizona and receives a moderate amount of snowfall each year, with accumulations averaging around 12.4 inches.

The town experiences snowfall from January to April, September, November, and December.

However, February is particularly notable with an average of 2.4 snowfall days and a total accumulation of 3.78 inches

Finding More Snow in the Area

looking for snow in cottonwood

If you love winter sports, being in Cottonwood near Flagstaff is great because it is so close to all the action.

Flagstaff, which is known as one of the snowiest cities in the United States, receives an impressive amount of snow each year, with over 100 inches.

Flagstaff Snow Park is a fantastic place for snow play, located at an elevation of 7,000 feet above sea level.

In addition, if you are a fan of winter sports, you can visit some popular ski resorts in Flagstaff. These include Arizona Snowbowl, Snowbowl Ski Patrol, and Humphrey Summit Ski.

Fact: Flagstaff received a whopping 163.1 inches of snow during the winter of 2022-23. 

How Much Snow Does Cottonwood, AZ Get?

amount of snow in cottonwood

The drier climate and lower elevation of Cottonwood compared to the mountain areas to the north and east help prevent extreme snow events.

However, the city does experience occasional snowfall during winter when the weather conditions are just perfect.

Cottonwood is located in the beautiful Verde Valley region of north-central Arizona, at about 3,300 feet. During the winter, the city experiences occasional snowfall, but it does not often have large storms.

Cottonwood typically gets somewhere around 10-12 inches of snow each year, on average.

Here are the average snowfall amounts for each season:

  • In November, there was only half an inch of rainfall.
  • In December, the rainfall increased to 2 inches.
  • In January, there was a total of 3 inches of something.
  • In February, there was 3 inches of rain.
  • In March, there was 1.5 inches of rain.
  • And in April, there was 0.2 inches of rain.

Historical Snowfall Event in Cottonwood, AZ

history snowfall in cottonwood arizona

In 2015, Arizona had a major winter storm, resulting in an unexpected and significant snowfall.

It is not unusual for places like Flagstaff to experience heavy snowfall, but this storm surprised everyone by bringing snow to areas that do not usually get much of it.

For example, Cottonwood and Sedona in the Verde Valley got more snow than usual. Cottonwood had five inches of snow, while Sedona had a little over nine inches.

This snowfall was quite unusual for lower elevations that do not typically experience such heavy snow.

In addition to Prescott, Payson, Show Low, and Pine, other communities also experienced the unusual occurrence of waking up to a snowy New Year’s Day.  

Fact: In 2022, Prescott, which is not far from Cottonwood, received a total of 19.2 inches of snow, while Williams accumulated a whopping 139.5 inches. 

Is Cottonwood a Good Place for Winter Vacations?

vacation in cottonwood

With its nice elevation, Cottonwood, Arizona is a great place to consider for winter vacations, even though the town does not get a lot of snow.

Cottonwood may not have heavy snow, but it compensates with its stunning high-desert scenery, numerous winter recreational activities just a short drive away, and a delightful historic downtown.

During the snowy months, the Verde Valley region that surrounds Cottonwood undergoes a magical transformation into a winter wonderland.

Just a quick drive from town, you will find some amazing skiing on the San Francisco Peaks, as well as sledding hills that are perfect for some family fun.

There are also plenty of trails where you can go snowshoeing, and you can relax and warm up in cozy lodges with roaring fires.

What’s more, Cottonwood’s location, just an hour away from Flagstaff, allows for exciting winter adventures on the slopes of Mount Humphrey.

You can enjoy the majestic views and then come back to Cottonwood to visit the lovely wine-tasting rooms, do some festive shopping, and have a delicious hot dinner in town.  

Can You Ski in Cottonwood, AZ?

doing ski in cottonwood az

There are no downhill ski areas or resorts located directly within Cottonwood where you can enjoy skiing and snowboarding when it snows.

However, because the city is centrally located in Arizona, it is really convenient to get to some amazing ski resorts that are just a short drive away.

It is a good idea to check out the Arizona Snowbowl, which is conveniently located northwest of Cottonwood in the beautiful San Francisco Peaks.

At Snowbowl, you will find many ski runs spread across hundreds of acres of skiable terrain. These runs are conveniently accessible through various chairlifts.

It is really convenient to plan day trips from Cottonwood lodging if you are looking to have an exciting time skiing in the amazing powder of Southwest Arizona.  

Fact: Snowbowl, which has base elevations reaching almost 9,000 feet, typically gets more than 260 inches of snowfall during the winter season. 

Best Ski Resorts in Cottonwood, AZ

ski resorts recommended in cottonwood az

Once in Cottonwood, you can find many accommodation options that keep you close to where all the winter sports fun happens. Here are a few nice options to consider. 

#1. Best Western Cottonwood Inn

cottonwood best western inn

The Best Western Cottonwood Inn is great because it is close to the local wineries, Dead Horse Ranch State Park, and only a short 25-minute drive to the beautiful sights of Sedona.

Moreover, it is an impressive place to stay if you are planning a winter vacation near the amazing ski slopes of Arizona Snowbowl.

The hotel is only a short 30-minute drive away from the amazing downhill skiing on Mount Humphrey’s breathtaking peaks that reach heights of over 12,000 feet.

Once you have enjoyed a satisfying breakfast at the hotel’s complimentary buffet, you can take a short drive to Arizona Snowbowl.

There, you will find 777 acres of skiable terrain, which can be accessed using 8 different lifts.

The entire family can enjoy a wide range of exciting terrain, from easy slopes for beginners to challenging mogul fields, terrain parks, and bowls filled with fresh powder.

Fact: Snowbowl receives an impressive amount of snowfall each year, with over 260 inches, so the conditions on its 32 runs are consistently excellent.

#2. Lux Verde Hotel

lux verde hotel in cottonwood arizona

If you are planning a ski trip to Williams Ski Area, the Lux Verde Hotel in Cottonwood, Arizona is a great place to stay.

It is conveniently located about 1 hour and 30 minutes northwest of the ski area, making it a perfect home base for your adventure.

Once you have had a great time at the hotel’s pool, and hot tub, and experienced their wonderful hospitality, you can take a short drive on the interstate to reach the slopes of Williams Ski Area. These slopes go as high as 8,200 feet.

Williams may be small, but it has something for everyone when it comes to skiing. With 40 skiable acres and 2 lifts, you can find terrain suitable for all skill levels.

Beginners have plenty of room to develop their skills on wide, gentle runs. At the same time, intermediate and advanced skiers and riders can find more challenging options and terrain parks to satisfy their needs.  

So, when you are in Cottonwood, the Lux Verde Hotel is there to provide you with all the comforts and amenities you need to unwind and rejuvenate yourself after a day of carving Williams’ impressive 183 meters of vertical.

#3. SpringHill Suites by Marriott Cottonwood

springhill suites in cottonwood

The SpringHill Suites by Marriott in Cottonwood, AZ is a great place to stay if you plan skiing at the Sunrise Park Resort.

After enjoying exciting days on the slopes, you can easily relax in the comfortable suites and take advantage of the convenient amenities. The slopes are just a short 2-hour drive away.

If you take a quick drive, you will reach Sunrise Park, which has 65 runs spread across three peaks that rise up to 11,000 feet. The resort has a variety of terrain options suitable for all skill levels.

You can enjoy wide cruisers, areas with stunning trees, challenging bump runs, terrain parks, and even a brand-new halfpipe. To help you get around, there are 8 lifts available.

Overall, the location is ideal for enjoying both skiing and leisure activities, with wineries and attractions like the Chapel of the Holy Cross nearby.

SpringHill makes it easy to start each day by enjoying Sunrise Park’s powder, thanks to its family-friendly suites and convenient location.

Fact: The Sunrise Park Resort area often receives more than 200 inches of snowfall, which means there is plenty of snow to cover the 240 acres of skiable terrain.

How Cold Does It Get in Cottonwood, AZ?

cottonwood cold temperature get

Cottonwood is located in central Arizona’s Verde Valley and enjoys mild winters compared to other areas of the state.

Although the nights can get chilly, the daytime temperatures are still pleasant enough to fully appreciate the natural beauty of the area.  

Here is more about the average temperature in Cottonwood, AZ:

MonthAvg Temperature (F)

Average High and Low Temperatures in Cottonwood, AZ

temperature in cottonwood usually

In Cottonwood, the coolest months are December and January. During this time, the average high temperatures range from the mid to upper 50s Fahrenheit.

Overnight, the temperatures usually drop to the mid-30s.

However, it is quite uncommon to experience extreme weather conditions, as temperatures rarely drop below freezing, even during the coldest winter nights.

Here is more about average high and low temperatures in Cottonwood, AZ:

MonthAverage Low Temp (F)Average High Temp (F)

The weather is really nice and mild, making it perfect for enjoyable outdoor activities such as hiking and biking throughout the day.

Typically, a light jacket and hat should keep you comfortable. It is a good idea to wear gloves and warm layers, especially during sunrise and sunset when the air starts to feel chilly. 

Impact of Rainfall on Cottonwood Climate

rainfall in cottonwood az

Cottonwood gets most of its rainfall during the late summer and early fall, specifically from July to October.

During this time, the heavy rainfall saturates the ground in preparation for the upcoming winter months.

During the winter season in Cottonwood, the combination of saturated soil and cooler temperatures often results in persistent foggy conditions.In addition, when it is winter, rainfall can add moisture to the air.

This can cause thick fog to form, especially when the temperature drops below freezing. The fog can stick around for several days.

MonthRainfall (Inches)
Fact: Rainfall creates foggy conditions during the winter months, which can make it harder for residents to see clearly. 

Things to Explore in Cottonwood During Winter

When you are prepared to drive a bit, you can find some hidden gems in Cottonwood and explore the beauties of nearby areas.  Here is what you can do in winter. 


sledding in cottonwood

Sledding in Cottonwood, AZ, especially at Dead Horse Ranch State Park, is a one-of-a-kind and thrilling experience.

This park is a great place for families to go sledding, especially when there is a good amount of snow.

Both locals and visitors love the park because of its stunning natural beauty and the fact that they take good care of the sledding hill.

If you decide to bring your own sled or rent one at the park, there is nothing quite like the excitement of sliding down the snowy slopes while surrounded by Arizona’s beautiful scenery.   


snowshoeing in cottonwood

Snowshoeing in Cottonwood, AZ is a fantastic way to experience the peaceful and energizing beauty of the region’s winter landscapes.

If you are an enthusiast looking to explore the beautiful snow-covered woods, you can rent snowshoes from Arizona Outback Adventures. They will provide you with the gear you need for an amazing journey.

There is a really great trail called Loy Canyon’s 27-mile network, and it is only a 20-minute drive from Cottonwood.

The trail system here is perfect for snowshoers who want to experience nature, see wildlife, and breathe in the fresh winter air.   

Horse-Drawn Sleigh Rides

doing horse drawn sleigh rides cottonwood

Horse-Drawn Sleigh Rides in Cottonwood, AZ, provide a truly enchanting and nostalgic adventure that takes you on a journey to a winter wonderland.

The rhythmic sound of the horse’s hooves, along with the crisp winter air and the peaceful surroundings, make for a captivating atmosphere.

This activity is a great chance to immerse yourself in nature, appreciate the stunning Arizona winter scenery, and make unforgettable memories with your loved ones. 

Ice Skating

ice skating in cottonwood az

Ice skating in Cottonwood, Arizona is a wonderful winter activity that you can enjoy, especially at Sedona’s Buddha Stix outdoor seasonal ice skating rink.

It is a great way to have fun and experience excitement, regardless of age. This rink is conveniently located minutes away from Cottonwood.

The experience is truly memorable, thanks to the refreshing Arizona air, the glistening ice, and the pure joy of gliding on skates. 

Whether you have been skating for years or are giving it a try for the first time, the rink provides a friendly atmosphere where you can fully enjoy the delights of winter.

What is the Best Time to Plan Your Visit to Cottonwood, AZ?

visiting cottonwood what best time

Cottonwood, Arizona is a fantastic place to visit any time of the year.

The best times to visit Arizona are during the spring months of March to May and the fall months of September to November.

However, if you want to have some snowy fun in Cottonwood, or Flagstaff, you may want to travel in January.

Fact: Cottonwood is often cooler than the rest of Arizona, with an annual total of 87.7 days where the low temperature is below freezing. 


Does it snow in Cottonwood AZ? Cottonwood has relatively little snowfall, but being so close to Flagstaff makes it a great place to enjoy winter activities.

Cottonwood’s typical temperatures remain pleasant, making it an ideal place to relax after a day on the slopes. The 240 acres of runs at Sunrise Park Resort are in close proximity to the SpringHill Suites by Marriott Cottonwood.

If you are looking for some excitement after a day of skiing, head to Dead Horse Ranch State Park. Beautiful natural surroundings and a well-kept slope make this park a great destination for families.

Overall, Cottonwood is a great place to base yourself for exploring the snow in Arizona, thanks to its picturesque scenery, comfortable accommodations, and easy access to winter activities.