A Washington Winter Wonderland

Heavy snow shuts down Washington DC, but it also transforms the National Mall, its monuments, and other Washington landmarks like the White House into a winter wonderland.

White House in the Snow
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Washington’s weather is best known for being hot and humid in summer, but the region also gets a good dose of each of the other three seasons. It doesn’t get anything like the regular snow of places further north, but it can still get some big dumps of snow. Most of it typically comes in January and February, although it’s naturally variable with outliers.

The historical average in even the snowiest months is still under 6 inches, but that doesn’t tell the whole story, because the area can be prone to some big storms. The record holder so far goes all the way back to 1922, with the Knickerbocker storm dumping 28 inches. More recently storms in 2016, 2010, 2009, and 2003 have all dumped over 16 inches.

And while even small amounts of snow can create a surprisingly large amount of havoc for the area’s legions of commuters and it forces many schools to close–and even sometimes the federal government–it also transforms the National Mall, its monuments, and other Washington landmarks like the White House into a winter wonderland.

Here’s a sampling of some of the photos I’ve taken in DC during various snowstorms, including the Snowmageddon (2010) and Snowzilla (2016) storms and the much smaller but still significant Snurlough (2019) storm.

Photos of Washington DC in the Snow

Korean War Veterans Memorial Washington DC in the Snow
Korean War Veterans Memorial. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
World War One Memorial in the Snow
DC World War I Memorial (pre-renovation). Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Lafayette Park and the White House in Snow
Lafayette Square and the White House. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Washington DC Street at night in snowstorm
15th Street NW. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Tourists out in front of the White House with snow in the evening
Pennsylvania Avenue. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Arlington National Cemetery in the snow with fall foliage
Arlington National Cemetery. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Cherry Blossom Lantern in the Snow
Japanese Lantern at the Tidal Basin. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Washington DC in the Snow
Constitution Gardens. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Snowman next to the Potomac with the Arlington Memorial Bridge in the Background - Potomac River Frozen Over - January 26, 2016
The Potomac. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Park bench next to the Tidal Basin with Snow - Washington DC Cherry Blossoms - January 26, 2016
The Tidal Basin. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Arlington National Cemetery Tomb of the Unknowns Guard
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Snow on the Cherry Trees in Washington DC
The Tidal Basin. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
National Mall in the snow (Photo)
Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Poll to the left, with the JFK Hockey Fields to the right. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Washington Monument in the Snow
Washington Monument. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
National World War Two Memorial in the Snow
National World War II Memorial. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
White House in the snow (Photo)
White House. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Statue of President Andrew Jackson
Lafayette Square. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
White House Christmas tree at night
White House Christmas Tree. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
White House with snow in the evening
White House. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Old Canal Keeper's House on the National Mall in the Snow
The Lockkeeper’s House (pre-renovation). Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Snow in Constitution Gardens Washington DC
Constitution Gardens. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
US Treasury Building with snow and Christmas decorations
US Treasury Building. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
White House with snow in the evening
The White House. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Washington Monument with floodlights in a snowstorm at night
The Washington Monument. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Washington Monument in the Snow
The Washington Monument. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
World War Two Memorial in the Snow
National World War II Memorial. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Washington DC in the Snow
Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Korean War Veterans Memorial Washington DC in the Snow
Korean War Veterans Memorial. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com
Washington DC in the Snow
Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial. Photo © David Coleman / HaveCameraWillTravel.com

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David Coleman / Photographer
by David Coleman

I'm a freelance travel photographer based in Washington DC. Seven continents, up mountains, underwater, and a bunch of places in between. My images have appeared in numerous publications, and you can check out some of my gear reviews and tips here. More »