Bellingham has a Mediterranean climate with dry warm summers and mild winters. Just 17 miles south of the Canadian border, it may surprise you to know that the climate is mild enough with infrequent frosts that a species of palm is hardy here and camellias actually flourish. In spring, urban lawns are covered with daffodils and tulips; summer brings strawberries, blueberries, and cascades of roses; in autumn, apple, pear, and plum trees are weighed down by bushels of fruit. Winter can turn cold, due to long bouts of rain, but lowland snow is rare. And yes: rain is a regular thing, from soft drizzle to hardy downpours.
The warm season lasts from late June to late September, with an average daily high temperature above 66°F. Summer highs average 72°F, with lows around 56°F. The cold season lasts from mid-November to the end of February, with an average daily high temperature below 49°F.
Most Bellingham natives can survive with a good pair of Teva’s, some Carhart’s and a t-shirt, but you may need more. Depending on when you’re coming, you will need to adjust our recommendations below. However we suggest you pack a little of everything as a general rule:
- Comfortable clothing including long and short pants
- Sandals or comfortable walking shoes; light-weight hiking shoes if you plan to hike
- Layered clothing, including hat, gloves, and tights for cold weather months
- Sun hat, sun glasses, lip balm, and sun block for high intensity sun months
- Sweater or polar fleece cover-up; warm jacket, windbreaker and/or raincoat for cooler weather
- A small carry pack