If you are an outdoor enthusiast, there is a good chance that a rainy forecast is the last thing you want to see. For some of us, a rainy hike or trail run is an occasional annoyance that is easily avoidable. Of course, there are parts of the country where rainy days are the norm and waiting for the clouds to break could mean never getting outside. We took a look at average rainfall totals from 1981- 2010, and these waterlogged environments rated as the soggiest cities in the US. (Note: In this instance, a city is any town with a population of 20,000 or more.) Don’t believe me? Read on for the precipitation stats, along with fun activities these locals do regardless of the weather.
The rainiest cities in the US
10. Houma, Louisiana
The folks in Houma know how to party it up in the rain, and it’s a good thing, considering they average 64.5 inches of precipitation every year! August is the wettest month in Houma, but the single-day record didn’t occur in that month. Rather, May 31, 1959, still holds the record total after receiving 11.35 inches of rain in a single day! Houma locals still like to get out for their daily runs, so waterproof-breathable gear is a must to stay dry and cozy in the humid temperatures.
9. Gulfport, Mississippi
Gulfport is the second-largest city in Mississippi (after Jackson) and its rain totals are just as big, averaging 64.6 inches of rain per year. July is the rainiest month, however, and its record-setting day is more recent than Houma’s. On August 30, 2012, Gulfport received a whopping 11.63 inches of rain. Of course, you don’t live in one of the rainiest cities in the US without becoming used to a damp environment. Gulf coast fishing abounds, so waders might not be a bad idea if you’re looking to head out with your reel.
8. Mobile, Alabama
Are you noticing a trend yet? Another Southern city breaks into the top 10, as Mobile receives 65.28 inches of average annual rainfall! Just like Gulfport, Mobile’s rainiest month is July, so you might want to plan your trips accordingly. Mountain biking is a popular activity in Mobile, as locals heads to trails in Little River State Forest and Graham Creek Nature Preserve. It may be worth checking out a waterproof cycling jacket if you know you’ll be shredding singletrack in the rain.
7. Pascagoula, Mississippi
The Southern states continue to hold their lead, as Mississippi clocks its second city in the top 10 rainiest places in the US. Pascagoula is just ahead of Mobile with 65.4 inches of rain per year. On average, Pascagoula sees 74 days of rain every year and July is the rainiest month. If you’re swinging through to visit, check out the Historic Pascagoula Bike Trail. Not only can you get a little exercise in, but you’ll also be able to learn a lot of the history and nature of the surrounding environment. Don’t forget your cycling shorts!
6. Corvallis, Oregon
The sixth position jumps across the country to the Pacific Northwest. Corvallis, Oregon, clocks 65.9 inches of annual rainfall, with December being the rainiest month. Maybe visit Corvallis in July and Mississippi in December? Standup paddleboarding is popular in Corvallis and is a great way to catch the early fall color from the Willamette River. If you’re in the area but have never tried SUP, consider renting a board and learning all about this quickly growing sport.
5. Longview, Washington
The top half of our list continues in the Pacific Northwest with Longview, Washington. Located in southern Washington near Portland, Longview is frequently overcast thanks to moisture from the Pacific Coast marine layer. That moisture adds up to a whopping 66.8 inches of precip annually and hits its peak in November. Golf is a popular activity in this area, but the wind can make the sport a bit tricky. If you’re headed out in windy or sunny conditions, consider a windproof hat. Not only will it keep the elements off your face but it will also eliminate stray hairs from blowing into your eyes.
4. Marrero, Louisiana
A lot of people would roll Marrero in with New Orleans, but Marrero is a city all of its own! Located across the river from The Big Easy, Marrero records an average 67.26 inches of rain per year. September is the rainiest month as the weather rolls off the summer temps. If you are into critters like alligators, wild pigs, otters, and river rats, you’ll love taking a kayak swamp tour. Viewing the wildlife from your boat is an experience like no other! Bring along waterproof shoes to keep your feet dry on the kayaking adventure.
3. Kailua, Hawaii
We’re hopping all the way to the middle of the ocean for this one! Kailua takes the third spot in our list of rainiest cities in the US, and it’s for good reason. Also known as Kona in everyday lingo, this Hawaiian city makes a big leap and clocks 71.12 inches of rainfall per year. January is the rainiest month, and March 25, 1994, saw a new record when the city received a massive 13.25 inches of rain in a single day! Hawaii is an outdoor paradise, so it’s no surprise that locals stay outside in the rain. Trail running and hiking are always great options, as long as you stay safe and watch the trails for potential mudslides. Of course, if you need a rain jacket, we’d definitely advise a waterproof-breathable shell that will allow you to move while still protecting you from the elements.
2. Maple Valley, Washington
Maple Valley has a sweet-sounding name, but with rainfall totals like this, it is anything but! With an astounding 85.73 inches of precipitation every year, Maple Valley takes the second spot on our list. November is the rainiest month, but that’s relative, considering the city sees measurable precipitation 91 days each year. Lake Wilderness Park is a popular spot to hang out, and locals take the trails and the lake to recreate. If you simply want to head out to the park and enjoy the scene, don’t forget your raincoat!
1. Hilo, Hawaii
Hilo stands in the top position as the rainiest city in the US! Averaging 156.79 inches of rain per year, it almost doubles rainfall totals of second-place Maple Valley. December is the rainiest month but truly, the city sees rain for half the year; it clocks 188 days of rain. Of course, locals still get outside and enjoy their beautiful island! Zip lining and volcano tours are very popular and a great way to see the natural scenery. Of course, hiking up to those volcanoes can be a bit of a trek, so make sure you wear comfy shoes.