Albuquerque is located on a semi-arid plateau at over 5,300 feet above sea level - making it the highest metropolitan city in the United States. Situated along the Rio Grande River, the city is bounded by the Sandia Mountains to the east. The Sandia Mountains, with a peak of 10,678 feet, are ideal for downhill and cross-country skiing, hiking, mountain biking, hang gliding, and other activities. Albuquerque’s Westside is dotted with ancient, dormant volcanoes and lava flows as well as the historic Petroglyph National Monument.
Albuquerque’s wonderful weather delights residents and visitors alike with blue skies overhead providing the perfect backdrop to explore all that the area has to offer. Albuquerque's natural beauty is enhanced by more than 300 days of sunshine annually. While there are distinctive seasons that allow for winter and summer activities, the area has a moderate climate. Albuquerque's high desert terrain and climate make it an ideal location for people who love the outdoors.
There is nothing quite like enjoying an Albuquerque sunset — brilliant hues of orange and pink are the perfect end to a sunny day. Throughout the year, the temperature will drop 20 to 30 degrees when the sunsets, which makes for refreshing evenings and cool mornings.
Albuquerque’s air quality is consistently ranked among the best thanks to forward-thinking “green initiatives.” The risk of natural disasters is extremely low in Albuquerque. Albuquerque is classified as a Zone 2B for earthquakes by the federal building code, which indicates a very moderate degree of risk. Floods are not considered a likely natural disaster because of the low amount of rainfall. Albuquerque typically receives 8 to 9 inches of rain and snowfall annually. Albuquerque gets most of its rainfall during late July through early September.
4,500 ft. in the Rio Grande river valley
6,500 ft. in the Sandia Mountain foothills
10,678 ft. at Sandia Crest
The temperature is starting to rise and the days are getting longer. With daytime temperatures in the seventies, springtime planting has begun and Albuquerque’s greenery begins to blossom. Expect perfect weather for a mountain hike, game of golf, or bike ride.
Enjoy the abundant sunshine. The weather may be warm, but it’s a dry heat with a low humidity of around 30 percent to 45 percent. Albuquerque typically only reaches 100 degrees a few days a year. Get out and explore the state! Camping, golfing, or a trip to the zoo is a great way to spend a long summer day.
Fall is the favorite season of many locals. The Cottonwoods’ leaves are changing and the evenings are cool and crisp. An extra layer of clothing may be appropriate. In October, the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta fills the sky with hundreds of hot air balloons, bringing in 800,000 plus visitors from around the world.
Expect occasional winter weather. Any snow that falls typically melts within a day or less. Winter allows the perfect opportunity to travel to one of New Mexico’s eight major ski areas.
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Source: Western Regional Climate Center
Air Quality and Sustainability
Albuquerque’s air quality is consistently ranked among the best. in the nation. In fact, the American Lung Association ranked the city among the top ten places for clear air. Albuquerque is committed to protecting the environment and advancing sustainability initiatives for a clean community. To see all of the efforts our community has undertaken to ensure a better future visit AlbuquerqueGreen.