Poll: Despite the rain, 73% of Northwesterners like the weather around here

A gloomy day that 86 percent of Western Washingtonians believe happens quite often around here. (KOMO Photo)

With the gray, rainy reputation around here, outsiders might think the weather is something we just have to suffer through. But a new poll shows a vast majority of residents have a positive opinion about the region's climate.

The poll, conducted by PEMCO Insurance, asked five questions of residents in Oregon and Washington, asking their opinion on the weather and how they deal with it. Perhaps the most surprising to those who aren't from here, a whopping 73 percent had gave at least some favorable rating to the weather round here.

The question asked to rate the weather on a scale of 1-7 with 7 being "absolutely love it" and 1 being "absolutely hate it" and 73 percent gave it a 5 or better -- with 15 percent saying they "absolutely love it." Only 2 percent gave it a 1, and 3 percent gave it a 2.

“We all know the common perception that the Northwest is plagued by rain and clouds, but it doesn’t seem to deter us from enjoying all this region has to offer,” PEMCO Spokesperson Derek Wing said in a press release announcing the poll results. "Maybe we’re just used to it, or maybe we’re willing to endure months of gloom for our glorious summers, but these poll results suggest we’ve developed a pretty bright outlook when it comes to Northwest weather."

Now, that poll includes the summers, which are typically dry and pleasant and what many will say is the payment for going through the other 9 months of general gray. But a significant chunk of Western Washington residents polled said they felt "somewhat positive" about the region's rain (45 percent) while 20 percent were neutral and 34 percent gave it some sort of thumbs down. That's good considering dry time these past few weeks seem to be measured in minutes instead of hours or days.

"It's almost like a weather tax," Wing told KOMO NewsRadio. "You put up with a little bit of the doom and the gloom in order to get those incredible, fantastic, legendary summers."

Just to confirm those polled knew what they were talking about, they were asked if they believed there were any periods of prolonged gloomy weather where they lived. 86 percent in Western Washington said "yes" while 12 percent either apparently never go outside, or live in Sequim. (2 percent said "don't know.")

So we all (mostly) agree it's gloomy around here, and a big chunk of us don't mind it. That theme was also on display in the fourth question: For those who do believe you have gloomy weather, what do you do to combat it?

53 percent of men surveyed and 40 percent of women answered: "Nothing." 20 percent of men and 29 percent of women said they take supplements or medications, about 17-18 percent go on vacation, 8-10 percent use artificial sunlight, and 16 percent said "other".

MORE | Full Poll Results

But what do we pretty much all agree on *not* using? An umbrella. Locals know using an umbrella is either a sign of weakness, being from out of town, or both. The poll shows 44 percent in Washington *never* use an umbrella while 23 percent more rarely use one and 10 percent more said it's more rare than common to use one. Only 4 percent say they always use an umbrella and 15 percent total said they were more likely than not to use one.

“Perhaps it’s the inconvenience of constantly carrying an umbrella around, or maybe it’s more of a badge of honor to endure the rain without one, but it’s clear we share strong opinions about ways to stay dry!” Wing said.

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