December is the beginning of the cold winter season in Missouri with the average high temperatures in the 37°F (2.8°C) to 48°F (8.9°C) range and the average low temperatures in the freezing 18°F (-7.8°C) to 31°F (-0.6°C) range across the state. The average temperatures in Trenton in the north are between 20°F (-6.7°C) to 38°F (3.3°C), while those in Joplin in the south are between 28°F (-2.2°C) to 47°F (8.3°C). Snowfall occurs regularly in the state and is massive in the northern portion where it exceeds 5" (127mm) in many places. The southern part is rainier than the rest with 4" (102mm) of precipitation. Precipitation is heavy in the Ozark Mountains at higher elevations. Trout fishing is popular in the state parks of the Ozark valleys, with fewer crowds giving better chances to catch the fish in the winter. December sees a marked reduction in the number of daylight hours and sunshine. Be prepared for extreme temperature swings, especially during the night. Overall, people who are wary of the cold can skip Missouri in December.