Does This Year In Cincinnati Seem Unusually Cloudy To You? You’re Right.

If you’re thinking 2021 has been very cloudy, you’re right. Including today (which is likely to change with late day sun, but we’ll use data through 4pm today), today was the 10th completely cloudy day in Cincinnati:

We’ve not only had 10 days with 100% cloud cover in February; we also had 15 days with no sunshine in January:

This means we’ve had 25 days so far in 2021 with no sunshine:

That also means 47% of all days so far this year have been cloudy, and 88% of all days so far this year have had more clouds than sun. Is this unusual? It is. Through this date in 2020, we only had 20 completely cloudy days, but 86% of all days through February 22nd had 50% or more cloud cover:

2019 had a similar start through this point in the year; there were 21 days with no sun, and all but 5 days had clouds winning out:

2018 YTD had fewer 100% cloudy days, but only 9 out of 53 days had less than 50% cloud cover:

Compared to 2018, 2017 year-to-date had fewer days with more sun than clouds:

2016 had a more even distribution of days by average cloud cover and fewer overcast days:

Recent history would suggest that it’s not unusual to have more clouds than sun in February, but 2021 so far has been among one of the cloudiest. The average daily cloud cover for Cincinnati month-to-date is about 80%, and only one February – 2018 – has been cloudier:

…and the year so far is also quite cloudy compared to other recent years. Only 2019 – with 57% of all days through this point in the year having 90%+ cloud cover – beats 2021:

A big reason why it has been so cloudy recently is the amount of snowfalls. Despite being about 1/2″ behind average for total precipitation in February so far, nearly 22″ of snow has accumulated so far this month in Cincinnati…and when it snows like that, it will be cloudy:

The only next few days will be slightly brighter than the month so far, but a mix of sun and clouds is about as soon as it gets through the middle of next week.

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