Winter 2017


When is Winter 2017?

Winter 2017 starts on Thursday, December 21, 2017 (in 120 days) and ends on Tuesday, March 20th 2018 (in 209 days).  2017 Calendar

What is Winter?

Winter afternoon. Photo: flickr.com/photos/22746515@N02/5277611659Winter afternoon
Winter is one of the four seasons that make up the year. It is the coldest time of the year and falls between autumn (fall) and spring, the intervening periods that lead from and to summer, the warmest time of the year.

Astronomical winter vs. meteorological winter

There are various ways to define the start and end dates of winter. The two most commonly used ones are based on the astronomical calendar and the meteorological calendar. Astronomical and meteorological winter start and end on different dates.

Astronomical winter

In the astronomical calendar the start and end dates of winter are based on the changing position of Earth in relation to the sun and the resulting solar events of equinoxes and solstices. In the Northern Hemisphere autumn ends and winter starts at the moment of the December solstice, which occurs every year between December 20 and December 23. Winter ends and spring starts at the moment of the March equinox, which occurs every year between March 19 and March 21. In the Southern Hemisphere winter lasts from the June solstice (June 20 to 22) to the September equinox (September 22 or 23).

The start and end dates for winter given on this page are the dates of astronomical winter in the Northern Hemisphere and are based on Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), which for practical purposes is equivalent to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). While winter starts and ends at the same moment in time all over the Northern Hemisphere, the date and local time differ from place to place depending on the year and a location's time zone. For locations that are ahead of UTC (further east) it may fall on the day after, and for locations that are behind UTC (further west) it may fall on the day before. To find out the exact date and time of winter 2017 in your area use this seasons calculator.

Meteorological winter

Meteorologists, on the other hand, define seasons based on climatic conditions and the annual temperature cycle. It is important for them to be able to compare the same period of time in different years. The length of the astronomical seasons varies between 89 and 93 days, while the length of the meteorological seasons is less variable and is fixed at 90 days for winter in a non-leap year (91 days in a leap year), 92 days for spring and summer, and 91 days for autumn. While the exact definition of a season's timing and length can differ in different areas based on local conditions, in most of the Northern Hemisphere meteorological winter is generally defined as the three months of December, January and February, with the season starting on December 1 and ending on February 28 (29 in a leap year).

There is no "official rule" which definition of winter to use, and different countries adhere to different conventions. Most of North America and Europe use astronomical winter, while Australia and New Zealand use meteorological winter (however, as these countries are in the Southern Hemisphere, the seasons are opposed and winter there lasts from June to August). In other cultures, eg. in the traditional Chinese calendar and in Celtic traditions, the December solstice is considered to be roughly the middle of winter.

Comparison table: astronomical winter vs. meteorological winter

Dates shown apply to the Northern Hemisphere
Season Start End
Meteorological Astronomical Meteorological Astronomical
Spring March 1 spring equinox
March 19 to 21
May 31 summer solstice
June 20 to 22
Summer June 1 summer solstice
June 20 to 22
August 31 autumnal equinox
September 22 or 23
Autumn September 1 autumnal equinox
September 22 or 23
November 30 winter solstice
December 20 to 23
Winter December 1 winter solstice
December 20 to 23
February 28 (29) spring equinox
March 19 to 21

For more information see Winter on Wikipedia.

When is Winter 2018?

Winter 2018 starts on Friday, December 21, 2018 (in 485 days) and ends on Wednesday, March 20th 2019 (in 574 days).  2018 Calendar

Dates for Winter from 2010 to 2025

The next occurrence of Winter is marked in red.

Year Winter starts on Winter ends on
Winter 2010      Tuesday, December 21, 2010      Sunday, March 20, 2011
Winter 2011      Thursday, December 22, 2011      Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Winter 2012      Friday, December 21, 2012      Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Winter 2013      Saturday, December 21, 2013      Thursday, March 20, 2014
Winter 2014      Sunday, December 21, 2014      Friday, March 20, 2015
Winter 2015      Tuesday, December 22, 2015      Sunday, March 20, 2016
Winter 2016      Wednesday, December 21, 2016      Monday, March 20, 2017
Winter 2017      Thursday, December 21, 2017      Tuesday, March 20, 2018
Winter 2018      Friday, December 21, 2018      Wednesday, March 20, 2019
Winter 2019      Sunday, December 22, 2019      Friday, March 20, 2020
Winter 2020      Monday, December 21, 2020      Saturday, March 20, 2021
Winter 2021      Tuesday, December 21, 2021      Sunday, March 20, 2022
Winter 2022      Wednesday, December 21, 2022      Monday, March 20, 2023
Winter 2023      Friday, December 22, 2023      Wednesday, March 20, 2024
Winter 2024      Saturday, December 21, 2024      Thursday, March 20, 2025
Winter 2025      Sunday, December 21, 2025      Friday, March 20, 2026
Data provided 'as is' without warranty

Winter 2017 Dates of Winter 2017 and surrounding years
as downloadable image file




Dates of other holidays, events and celebrations

Christian (and related)
Advent
Advent Sunday
All Saints' Day
All Souls' Day
Ascension Day
Ash Wednesday
Black Saturday
Boxing Day
Bright Saturday
Bright Week
Candlemas
Christmas
Christmas Day
Christmas Eve
Christmastide
Corpus Christi
Easter
Easter Day
Easter Eve
Easter Friday
Easter Monday
Easter Saturday
Easter Sunday
Eastertide
Easter Week
Easter Weekend
Epiphany
Epiphany Eve
Fat Tuesday
First day of Lent
Good Friday
Holy Friday
Holy Saturday
Holy Thursday
Holy Week
Jesus' Birthday
Lazarus Saturday
Lent
Mardi Gras
Maundy Thursday
Orthodox Easter
Palm Sunday
Pancake Day
Pascha
Pentecost
Pentecost Sunday
Pentecost Monday
Shrove Monday
Shrove Tuesday
St. Andrew's Day
St. David's Day
St. George's Day
St. Patrick's Day
St. Stephen's Day
Theophany
Three Kings Day
Trinity Sunday
Twelve Days of Christmas
Twelfth Night
Whit Sunday
Whit Monday
US federal holidays
New Year's Day
Martin Luther King Day
Presidents' Day
    (Washington's Birthday)
Memorial Day
Independence Day
Labor Day
Columbus Day
Veterans Day
Thanksgiving Day
Christmas Day

Australian holidays
ANZAC Day

The seasons
Spring
Vernal equinox (spring equinox,
March Equinox)
Summer
Summer solstice (June solstice)
Autumn / Fall
Autumnal equinox (fall equinox,
September equinox)
Winter
Winter solstice (December solstice)

Other days
April Fools Day
Armed Forces Day
Cinco de Mayo
Constitution Day
Daylight Saving Time
Day of the Dead
Día de los Muertos
Earth Day
Father's Day
Flag Day
Halloween
Indigenous Peoples' Day
International Women's Day
Mother's Day
Native American Day
New Year's Day
New Year's Eve
Star Wars Day
Samhain
Summer Time
Teacher Appreciation Day
Teacher Appreciation Week
Valentine's Day
World Environment Day
World Teachers' Day

... and more coming!

Calendars for 2017

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