Winter Days and Snowmen in Washington, D.C.


Washington, D.C., generally does not see much winter weather. Most years we are only subjected to enough cold days and snowflakes to give us the sense that we live in a land of four seasons.

Many people freak out about the possibility of snow as soon as the forecast notes it as a possibility. It stirs many lively conversations about teleworking and drives us all to stop into our local grocery stores just in case. The idea of a snowstorm is simultaneously enticing and scary.

We people in the Washington, D.C., area are not the heartiest bunch, but this lack of severe winter weather is one of many reasons I like living here.

Yesterday many businesses and schools were closed in and around Washington, D.C., and I’m glad because we actually received a fairly heavy dose of snow and cold. This morning I reluctantly hauled myself back out into the workaday fray with a run commute.


It was a windy morning in the ‘teens and the brisk air made me glad that I’d picked up that extra pair of cold weather running tights when I did.

I routed myself along the National Mall, rather than side streets. I wanted to see fresh snow, hear my breathing through my balaclava, and avoid the sight and sound of cars driving through slushy streets.

In return, I was rewarded with several encounters of the snowman kind.


Whoever crafted this one gave it penny eyes and sacrificed two pens in the name of arms.


This guy looks like it disagrees with the two-hour delay and wishes we could have stayed home for another day or two.


What about this tiny one? It says “No one gave me any arms or eyes, but I welcome you to the Department of Labor all the same.”


Broad in stature and grinning heartily, this snowman would melt most people’s hearts. It was impossible not to smile when I crossed its path. Alright, buddy, I thought. I’m glad I ran to work now.

Those who read this blog regularly know that I hail from Iowa, a state that gets plenty of snow and cold in the winter months. Every time flakes fall we do not run out and make a snowman. Sometimes, yes, but every time? No way. I can only imagine how evolved my snowman-making skills would be if we did. The snow and cold becomes a routine part of Iowa winters.

When snow arrives in Washington, D.C., it’s not only time to panic, it’s also an occasion to celebrate. Have a snowball fight. Go sledding with your kids. Run in the snow. Build a snowman. That celebration of snow makes me feel a little bit of love toward Washington, D.C., winters. Just a little.


      • Not where I live. We’re having standard late summer heat. But down south they had a couple days heat wave. We had a couple hot days in early January but it blew over. Our days are now in low-mid 30s celcius and will stay that way until early March. It’s humid even ar night … nights only drop to mid-high 20s celcius


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