Characteristics of Nevada's climate include average temperatures from the mid-40s to 50 degrees Fahrenheit, average annual precipitation ranges from between less than five and 40 inches, light winds and infrequent storms. Flooding is rare and normally occurs in the spring as a result of the melting of snow from the mountains.
Although Nevada has predictable average temperatures, due to surface heating during the day and rapid cooling during the evening there is a wide range of temperatures. The average temperature difference between the daily highest and lowest temperature is approximately 30 to 35 degrees. These ranges are greatest during the summer.
Precipitation in the form of snowfall is heavy in the mountains, especially in the northern portion of the state. Total seasonal snowfalls of up to 300 inches have been recorded. In some instances, up to 45 inches of snowfall is possible in a 24-hour period. While mountain snowfall is the main cause of flooding, occasionally it is caused by light storms and thunderstorms. In the southern and northern parts of the state, extensive flooding is caused from the melting of ice from the mountains. Heavy thunderstorms may infrequently flood local streams. When this occurs, the storms are usually cloudburst in nature.