Dispelling Myths: It Rains A Lot In Seattle

As people find out that I'm moving to Seattle, 9 out of 10 people tell me something along the lines of "You better get ready for all that rain!" Being a fan of random trivia, I like to counter with "Did you know it rains more in Houston than in Seattle?" Yes, it's true! The information below is based on weather data collected from 1981 to 2010 for the NOAA National Climatic Data Center.

If you're counting by total inches of rainfall Seattle ranks way down at 32 behind New York, Houston, Atlanta, Boston, Philly, DC, Pittsburgh, and others. If you're counting by number of days with rain, Seattle ranks 6th on the list behind Buffalo, Rochester, Portland, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh. Seattle is more drizzly, and not so much rainy. 

Where does it stack up with Dallas? Dallas ranks just below Seattle on the list with an average of only 0.1" less of rain per year. Now you know... it doesn't really rain THAT much in Seattle.

Days City Inches
115 New Orleans, Louisiana 62.7
135 Miami, Florida 61.9
117 Birmingham, Alabama 53.7
108 Memphis, Tennessee 53.7
114 Jacksonville, Florida 52.4
117 Orlando, Florida 50.7
122 New York, New York 49.9
104 Houston, Texas 49.8
113 Atlanta, Georgia 49.7
119 Nashville, Tennessee 47.3
125 Providence, Rhode Island 47.2
117 Virginia Beach, Virginia 46.5
105 Tampa, Florida 46.3
100 Raleigh, North Carolina 46
130 Hartford, Connecticut 45.9
123 Louisville, Kentucky 44.9
126 Boston, Massachusetts 43.8
114 Richmond, Virginia 43.6
164 Portland, Oregon 43.5
129 Indianapolis, Indiana 42.4
137 Cincinnati, Ohio 41.9
116 Baltimore, Maryland 41.9
110 Charlotte, North Carolina 41.6
118 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 41.5
113 St. Louis, Missouri 41
167 Buffalo, New York 40.5
114 Washington, DC 39.7
139 Columbus, Ohio 39.3
155 Cleveland, Ohio 39.1
91 Kansas City, Missouri 39.1
151 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 38.2
149 Seattle, Washington 37.7
81 Dallas, Texas 37.6
124 Chicago, Illinois 36.9
84 Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 36.5
127 Milwaukee, Wisconsin 34.8
167 Rochester, New York 34.3
88 Austin, Texas 34.2
135 Detroit, Michigan 33.5
83 San Antonio, Texas 32.3
117 Minneapolis, Minnesota 30.6
68 San Francisco, California 20.7
60 Sacramento, California 18.5
96 Salt Lake City, Utah 16.1
62 San Jose, California 15.8
87 Denver, Colorado 15.6
36 Los Angeles, California 12.8
42 San Diego, California 10.3
30 Riverside, California 10.3
30 Phoenix, Arizona 8.2
27 Las Vegas, Nevada 4.2