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Why Chicago is known as the windy city?

The nickname “Windy City” originated because of the area’s windstorms and because the people were known for being full of hot air. The dual meaning seems to have been lost over time, and most people believe it refers to windy weather rather than windy people.

Image Credit: Adriana.Macias / Shutterstock.com

The Chicago-The famous windy city- weather this year was anything but pleasant. 2021 saw one of the coldest Februaries in Chicago since 1875. The cumulative snowfall also crossed the normal levels for the month. Such adverse weather conditions had a lot of impact on the city and its people. Along with that, it came as a warning of how things might be in Chicago (during winter) for the foreseeable future.

Hence, if you’re planning a trip during winter sometime this year or the next, here are a few things you should know about the weather in Chicago during winters. 

The Type of Clothes to Take

Warm clothes are a must. Take something that’s insulated or has multiple layers to protect you from the cold. Temperatures in Chicago this year dropped to an average of 13.3 degrees. And while next year’s ones are hard to predict, for now, we can only assume that it’s not going to get any better and prepare ourselves for it.

Apart from your regular winter jackets and coats, you could consider taking ski jackets, or any other type of waterproof winter clothing. These jackets are usually seam-sealed, meaning that even during a bit of rain, the water can’t penetrate your jacket. Thus, you’ll be all warm and cozy, no matter how bad the weather gets.

Along with warm jackets and trousers, be sure to cover your head, eyes, ears, and arms as well. Wear mittens and socks, even when you’re indoors and the temperature starts dropping below 15 degrees.

Commutes Can Be Difficult

This year in Chicago, the winter storm took a great toll on the city, especially on its road and transportation system. With around 9 inches of snow in some parts of the city, the roads were completely inaccessible. In fact, it took some time for the plow trucks to do their thing and get the snow off the streets.

If you have to commute within Chicago during the winter, you need to avoid coming here in February. Otherwise, one snowstorm like this year’s, and you’re likely to be stuck indoors for at least a week or so.

Even once the snow’s been cleared off, you still need to be very cautious while driving. The roads will remain slippery and visibility will pose a problem as well. 

Windy city railway

The high-speed windy city rail train connects outlying suburbs to downtown Chicago. It is a fast and easy way to travel to the heart of the city, connecting suburban areas with the city’s center. The high speed train runs from Chicago’s Logan Square to St. Louis.

Travel by Air Might Get Delayed or Even Canceled

Due to the snowstorm, hundreds of flights to and from Chicago were canceled in February. This is nothing new. Winter storms, as bad as the one in Chicago, are known to disrupt all sorts of airport activities. If you’re visiting Chicago, do it before February. Changes in the weather patterns might lead to another storm next year, and you’ll probably have to watch your flight getting canceled. 

Stock up on Supplies

The snow might trap you indoors for a good number of days (maybe a week at most). So, you should stock up on necessary supplies, mostly food, medication, and some personal care items. You should also consider stocking up some fresh drinking water, just in case.

Power Outages

Snowstorms can leave you without power for days. It happened in Chicago this year and was even worse in Texas. At times, entire power grids will stop working, and it could take days, weeks, or even months to get them working again. 

If you’re in Chicago during this time of the year, and the weather takes a turn for the worse, you too should anticipate power outages, along with slight disruptions in other utilities like your supply. Normally, such disruptions will be taken care of within a week. However, you should still think of the worst possible scenario and take preparations accordingly.

Avoid Going Out if There Is  A Snowstorm it’s windy city

The cold weather conditions will make it really difficult for you to go outside. Things won’t get any better if a snowstorm hits the city like it did this year. Under such conditions, the wisest thing to do is stay indoors, and avoid going outside. Unless it’s an absolute necessity or an emergency, you should keep yourself indoors and stay warm. Staying exposed to the cold for a long time can lead to cases of hypothermia, which is something you want to avoid during this time of the year.

Chicago is a beautiful city, with a lot of things for you to experience, especially during springtime. Yet, if you cannot but visit this city during the winter, make sure you’re ready for what it has in store for you.

You might also like 20 Fun Facts About Illinois Area Codes


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