I get this question A LOT. And more and more now, as announcements like the current “Widespread Winter Storm To Last for Days” headline hits WEATHER.com- which I speculate is one of, if not THE, most popular weather service when it comes to the USA.
BUT…when people look at the weather forecast on that site in say…San Pedro, Belize…a grim tale is told. Sure, it’s warm….but RAIN! Every day?
No, no, no. Let’s take a look above at yesterday. 90% chance of precipitation…thunderstorms…oh the forecast was grim. And the weather looked like this…
With some clouds moving in at the end of the day that provided moments like this as the sun set…
We, on Ambergris, didn’t experience any rain at all. We fell into the 10%! Or, another way to look at this is, that the Weather.com forecast is not the very best one to look at.
And the latter is my opinion. Weather in the Tropics is famously changeable. Bright sun, passover heavy shower for 10 minutes and then right back to even hotter sun. (Short spurts of summer and fall rain does not cool things off – as it might in other locations.)
And though it is the tropics, it is not just always warm and sunny here (though mostly it is), we do have seasons.
I summarized them in this older post: Are There Seasons in Belize? I broke them down in Hurricane Season (where you odds are sunny days GREATLY outweigh your odds of a storm), Winter, Spring/Easter Winds and Summer.
Here is what I look at for my daily/weekly weather forecasts. I use different sites for different things. And what will be abundantly, overwhelming apparent, is that I am not weatherperson – not even an amateur one. But let’s give it a go anyway.
- Longest term: Windfinder.com – This link, for Ambergris Caye, is over a week’s worth of material…and very specific. Almost hour by hour. What I gather from looking at it right now…is that Thursday, it will probably rain. All other days are looking pretty good.
- Next few days: Belize Hydromet The Belize Meteorological Service. A great look at the next four days. And even more useful to me are the satellite images.
We are the arrow and the area I circled? If weather is moving, as it normally does, from east to west…what we are going to get.
- RIGHT NOW! SanPedroWX.com: A local station set up by someone who lives here and is a massive weather nerd. Gives you live pictures and all sorts of stats.
Currently weather picture over the sea, barometric pressure (direction – rising or falling, seems to be the most important, you can read this article on how to use a barometer in TheArtofManliness.com – tee hee) and humidity.
If humidity is under 75%, you can style your hair, if it is over? Don’t bother.
Bottom line: predicting some showers seems to be a way of “saving your tropical weather ass” and in an area where humidity is often topping 80%, not a bad call.
But in the end, Belize weather is fantastic much of the time – we get WAYYYYYY more sun than rain. WAYYYY more warm weather than cold weather – and if cold weather to you means below 60 degrees – we get none of that!
So know the big picture, like what season it is, book your trip and if you are DYING to know…check some of these sites the week before you leave.
Don’t worry – you are coming to beautiful Belize.