Tuesday, Dec. 1, is the first day of meteorological winter. This is different from astronomical winter, which begins Dec. 21.
What is the difference? Astronomical seasons are based on the position of the Earth in relation to the sun. They are most commonly used and known. The seasons are defined by two solstices and two equinoxes.
Meteorological seasons are based on the annual temperature cycle and the calendar.
The winter season typically brings the coldest months of the year, and summer brings the hottest. Spring and fall are transition months.
Here are the meteorological seasons:
- Spring: March, April, May
- Summer: June, July, August
- Fall: September, October, November
- Winter: December, January, February
Since the meteorological seasons fall on the same date every year, it is easier to compare seasonal and monthly statistics.