North American Climate
North America is the only continent that has every kind of climate, from the dry, bitter cold of the Arctic to the steamy heat of the tropics. The map and legend show what the climate is like throughout the continent.
To find the climate in various parts of North America, select a state or province from the list below.
North America is the only continent that has every kind of climate, from the dry, bitter cold of the Arctic to the steamy heat of the tropics. An icecap permanently covers the interior of Greenland, where the temperature almost never rises above freezing. In the North American tundra, the vast treeless plain of the far north, the temperature rises above freezing for only a short period each summer. In the low-lying areas of the far south, it is hot and rainy all the time.
Most of the rest of North America is cold in the winter and warm in the summer, with moderate precipitation. Some areas have mild winters and long, hot summers. Other areas have harsh winters and short summers. The highest temperature ever recorded in North America was 134 degrees F. (57 degrees C) at Death Valley in 1913. The lowest temperature was -87 degrees F. (-66 degrees C) at Northice in Greenland in 1954.
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