Austria is located within a temperate climatic zone. In the west and northwest the influence of the temperate Atlantic climate is felt more strongly, in the east the influence of the continental climate. Temperatures depend largely on altitude, with averages 5°C lower for each additional 300 m of elevation. Summers can be hot, with temperatures sometimes reaching 30°C or more, summer evenings are usually cool.
Precipitation is quite evenly distributed over the entire year, but May, September and the first half of October tend to be the driest, April and November tend to be the wettest periods. Again, altitude determines the precipitation pattern; while high-level areas in the Alps may have a high average rainfall in excess of 2000 mm per year, while some regions in the flatlands of Austria have only 600 mm annually. From June through August, rain usually comes in the form of sometimes heavy thunderstorms, these storms can sometimes bring heavy hail and snowfall in the mountainous regions of the Alps, even in summer.
Weather conditions vary only slightly across the country, the lowland regions in the north and east have more continental influenced conditions with colder winters and hotter summers, and the southeastern areas of Austria have longer and warmer, almost Mediterranean-like summers. Be aware that whatever the season, if you're at a high altitude, the weather can change quickly and dramatically.
The winter snow cover lasts from late December through March in the valleys, from November through May at about 1,800 m, and becomes in many years permanent above about 2,500 m.