Bad Weather Survival Guide To Tailgating In Seattle

Be prepared for any weather during the Seahawks game (Credit, Karen Ulvestad)

During the NFL season, Seahawks fans may encounter some unpredictable weather. One day it might be sunny and clear, while the next you could experience a torrential downpour that will literally flood the city streets. To make your tailgating experience as pleasant and as comfortable as possible, utilize this bad weather survival guide so you’re always prepared, regardless of the season and the Pacific Northwest’s ever-changing weather.

Check the Forecast

No matter what season it is, always check the weather forecast before heading out to a Seahawks game, for it’s better to be overly prepared than unprepared. While the area doesn’t experience sweltering heat too often, there have been times over the last few years where temperatures reached about 100 degrees Fahrenheit for a day or two. The same goes for frigid temperatures, which are encountered a bit more during the winter months. Seattle’s weather forecast could change overnight, so be sure to check the night before and the morning of the game, just to be safe.

Take Cover

Whether you’re tailgating in the rain or sunshine, it’s always helpful to have some type of protective cover that can shield you from the elements. Many tailgaters use a tent or tarp, or if you have a canopy on the back of your vehicle, this can provide cover for you too. By wearing a hooded sweatshirt, jacket or poncho, you’ll also be protected from the wind. The old standby of using an umbrella always works wonders to keep the rain away. Blankets and seat cushions are helpful as well while sitting in the tailgating lots or in the stadium as you watch the game.

Dress in Layers

Typical Seattle weather starts out cooler in the morning and then begins to warm up by mid-afternoon. To start your day, you’ll want to dress in layers of lightweight clothing, perhaps with a sweatshirt or jacket as your outer article. Then, as the day’s temperatures increase, you can remove heavier clothing as necessary. It’s always wise to wear thermal socks and to bring gloves, hats and scarves to help keep warm in colder temperatures. If you have waterproof outerwear, such as a coat, poncho, hat or boots, consider wearing them so your inner layers of clothing do not get wet.

Food and Beverages

Bring tailgating foods and drinks that will complement the weather on game day. If it’s warmer outside, be sure to bring plenty of ice to keep your beverages cold and your food fresh. If it’s a colder day, have a thermos of fresh, hot chocolate, coffee or tea available to warm your body. To stay hydrated in any kind of weather, always have plenty of bottled water on hand. Warmer weather foods to consider bringing include burgers, hot dogs or sausages, and then have sides that can stay chilled such as potato salad, macaroni salad or fresh fruits and vegetables. Cold weather food options include stew, chili, clam chowder, lasagna or meatloaf.

Other Necessities

When tailgating in colder, more severe weather, there are some essential items you should always have handy in your car or truck. To help melt black ice that may accumulate in the tailgating lot, bring along some kitty litter or sand. A shovel is always helpful to remove any snow. An ice scraper is another tool to keep in your car, because in colder weather, your windshield and back window can freeze over quickly. Last but not least, always have an extra set of jumper cables on hand, for you never know when you or a friend may run into battery trouble thanks to outside elements.

Check out Tailgate Fan to keep the party going at

Sue Gabel has been writing in the greater Puget Sound/Seattle area since 1999. She writes about music, the Seattle scene and more. Her work can be found on


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