What Are the Warmest Cities in South Dakota?

What Are the Warmest Cities in South Dakota?

The three warmest cities in South Dakota are Winner, Wagner, and Vermillion.

In this article I’m going to share with you my ranking of the warmest places in South Dakota.

I created my list by researching data provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and other climate data providers.

Below I’m listing the top 10 warmest places in South Dakota that have the highest average yearly temperatures. Later in the article I share a table with 30 most populous cities in South Dakota.

Top 10 Warmest Cities in South Dakota

Top 10 Warmest Cities in South Dakota

Here are the top 10 warmest places in South Dakota ranked by their daily mean temperature. While the cities in the top ten have fairly similar average annual temperatures, they’re up to 7 degrees higher than the coldest places. While it’s not a huge difference, every degree helps in a state as cold as South Dakota.

1. Winner – daily mean temperature of 49.7 °F

The small city of Winner is the winner of this ranking, having the highest daily mean temperature in South Dakota. Located in south-central South Dakota, Winner sees average high temperatures of 35-39 °F in the winter months, with lows dropping to 13-16 °F. In the summer, Winner features hot weather with temperatures between 82-90 °F during the day and 57-63 °F at night. The city gets 73 days with precipitation and 17 days of snow a year.

2. Wagner – daily mean temperature of 49.5 °F

The second warmest city in South Dakota is Wagner, a small town of 1,500 people. It’s located in Southeastern South Dakota. Temperatures in the second warmest town of South Dakota are colder in the winter: between 31-36 °F during the day and 9-14 °F at night. It has hotter summers, though, with the hottest temperature in July reaching 91 °F and temperatures between June and August between 84-91 °F.

3. Vermillion – daily mean temperature of 48.85 °F

Vermillion is a city of 12,000 people in the southeast corner of South Dakota, 39 miles northwest of Sioux City, Iowa. The city has similar winter temperatures to Wagner. In the summer months, it features much cooler temperatures, between 82-86 °F during the day.

4. Yankton – daily mean temperature of 48.65 °F

Yankton is situated 26 miles northwest of Vermillion, on the Missouri River and the border with Nebraska. This city of 15,000 people sees average winter highs of 30-35 °F and lows of 10-15 °F. Summer months are about a degree hotter than in Vermillion.

5. Hot Springs – daily mean temperature of 48.65 °F

Hot Springs is a town of 3,400 people in the southwestern part of the state, located 57 miles south of Rapid City. The city is situated within an hour to an hour and a half drive from Badlands National Park and Black Hills National Forest. Hot Springs enjoys the highest average high temperature in the state, at 63.5 °F compared to 62.2 °F in Winner. It has the mildest daytime winter temperatures in South Dakota, reaching 40-43 °F. In the summer, true to its name, Hot Springs has temperatures between 81-89 °F.

6. Fort Pierre – daily mean temperature of 48.45 °F

Fort Pierre, a town of 2,000 people in Central South Dakota on the Missouri River, has some of the hottest summers in this ranking. Average high temperatures between June and August are 83-90 °F. The city has relatively mild winters with daytime temperatures of 34-39 °F.

7. Sturgis – daily mean temperature of 48.2 °F

Sturgis is located in Western South Dakota, 29 miles northwest of Rapid City. It has some of the most moderate temperatures in the state. In the winter, average highs are between 38-39 °F and lows are 15-17 °F. Summer months feature average highs of 78-86 °F and lows of 53-60 °F.

8. Mitchell – daily mean temperature of 47.95 °F

With about 16,000 residents, Mitchell is the sixth largest city in the Mount Rushmore State. It’s located in Southeastern South Dakota, 73 miles west of Sioux Falls. It has by far the coldest winters out of all ten cities on this list. Daytime temperatures are 27-32 °F (so they’re always below freezing) while at night, temperatures drop to 9-15 °F. In the summer, Mitchell has warm temperatures of 81-87 °F, with some of the warmest summer nights at 60-65 °F.

9. Belle Fourche – daily mean temperature of 47.9 °F

Belle Fourche is a small city of 5,600 residents, located near the geographic center of the United States in Western South Dakota. The city lies about 12 miles east of the border with Wyoming. It has relatively warm for South Dakota’s standards winter temperatures of 37-39 °F and summers with temperatures between 79-87 °F.

10. Sioux Falls – daily mean temperature of 47.3 °F

The most populous city in South Dakota is the tenth warmest city in the state. While it has cooler temperatures than the previous cities, its coldest temperature of 27 °F during the day in January is still much higher than 20-21 °F in the coldest cities of the state such as Webster and Watertown. Sioux Falls has moderately hot temperatures between June and August, ranging on average from 81 to 85 °F.

30 Biggest Cities in South Dakota Ranked by Daily Mean Temperature

Badlands National Park, South Dakota

I created the table below by researching data for the most populous municipalities in South Dakota. When I couldn’t find data for a given city, I moved on to another. While the list includes 30 cities, some of the bigger cities may be missing because there was no data for them. Please check the closest geographically city then.

CityAverage high temperature (°F)Average low temperature (°F)Daily mean temperature (°F)
Hot Springs63.533.848.65
Fort Pierre62.334.648.45
Belle Fourche60.934.947.9
Sioux Falls5836.647.3
Box Elder603447
Rapid City59.633.746.65

Check the Warmest Cities in Neighboring States

If you’re interested in learning about the warmest cities in states neighboring South Dakota, check out the following articles:

Also check my article on the warmest cities in the US in every state.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the warmest place to live in South Dakota?

The small town of Winner has the highest daily mean temperature out of all cities in South Dakota, at 49.7 °F. Hot Springs has the highest average high temperature of 63.5 °F, with the mildest temperatures during the day in the winter months.

Is South Dakota warm all year round?

South Dakota is not warm year round. It’s one of the coldest states. The average temperature for the 30 cities I researched for this article is 46.2 °F. If we define warm weather as daytime temperatures of at least 70 °F, then South Dakota gets at most five such months, between May and September.

Does South Dakota have harsh winters?

South Dakota has cold winters but they aren’t as harsh as they are in North Dakota that has much severe weather. In the warmest cities of the state, the average high temperature on an average winter day can even reach 37-40 °F.

What city in South Dakota has the mildest weather?

The small city of Hot Springs in Southwestern South Dakota has the mildest winters. Between December and February it has average high temperatures of 40-43 °F and lows dipping to 14-15 °F.

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