Oakland: Geography and Climate

Oakland lies at the center of the Pacific Coast between Canada and Mexico. It is located on the east side of the San Francisco Bay, and is connected to the city of San Francisco by the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. Oakland boasts 19 miles of coastline to the west and magnificent rolling hills to the east. The flat plain of San Francisco Bay comprises about two-thirds of the city and the remainder of the city's terrain lies in the foothills and hills of the East Bay range. Residents and area visitors can take advantage of one of the most beautiful views in the world – the San Francisco Bay, the Golden Gate and Oakland Bay Bridges, and the sparkling Pacific Ocean. Cities adjacent to Oakland include Berkeley to the north; San Leandro to the south; Alameda across the estuary; Piedmont, a small city completely surrounded by Oakland; and Emeryville, a city that lies on the bay between Oakland and Berkeley. Oakland is the only city in the United States with a natural saltwater lake, 115-acre Lake Merritt, wholly contained within its border.

Oakland has earned the nickname "bright side of the Bay" because of its sunny skies and moderate year-round climate. Humidity remains high while precipitation is low. Almost all the city's rainfall occurs between October and January. The temperature usually reads about five degrees warmer than San Francisco, and the warmest months are September and October. The area's climate has been ranked number one in the country by Places Rated Almanac.

Area: 56 square miles (2000)

Elevation: 42 feet above sea level

Average Temperatures: January, 49.9° F; July, 62.1° F; annual average, 56.7° F

Average Annual Precipitation: 23 inches