Thornton, Colorado, USA
UpdatedThu, 29-Jan-2015 3:20pm MST 


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Temps return close to normal Thursday, less wind

Thursday, January 29th, 2015 5:25am MST

Our string of unseasonably warm days has come to an end.  Today in Thornton look for temps right near average for the date but, thankfully, with less wind than yesterday.

We’ll start out the day with partly to mostly cloudy skies above due to a good bit of moisture above.  Those clouds should start easing by late morning / early afternoon and by late afternoon be seeing more sun.  Temperatures look to warm today to around 47 degrees, a few above normal.

Overnight tonight mostly cloudy skies will be above and we will dip to 27 degrees.

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January 2015 top shots: Monthly photo slideshow

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015 5:37am MST
Snow early in the month allowed plenty of fun opportunities for kids in Thornton. (Ed Dalton)

Snow early in the month allowed plenty of fun opportunities for kids in Thornton. (Ed Dalton)

As one of our coldest months, January can be a good month to hibernate inside and avoid the outdoors.  But, like any month in Colorado, photo opportunities abound as our monthly slideshow demonstrates.

Snow is not normally dominant in the month but when it does fall, it can create a beautiful blanket of white.  Throw in the amazing sunrises and sunsets we receive in the middle of winter as well as wildlife and a host of other subjects and the imagery can be quite beautiful and stunning.

  • Slideshow updated January 28, 2015
  • To learn more about how to send your photo to us for inclusion in the slideshow, see below the slideshow.

Showcasing images captured by ThorntonWeather.com readers as well as some of our own, our monthly slideshow covers the entire gamut of weather-related imagery.

Sunsets, sunrises, wildlife and of course every type of weather condition are vividly depicted in images captured from yours and our cameras.

What is missing in the slideshow above?  Your photo!

Our monthly photo slideshow is going to feature images that we have taken but more importantly images that you have captured.  The photos can be of anything even remotely weather-related.

Landscapes, current conditions, wildlife, pets, kids.  Whimsical, newsy, artsy.  Taken at the zoo, some other area attraction, a local park, a national park or your backyard.  You name it, we want to see and share it!

Images can be taken in Thornton, Denver or anywhere across the extraordinary Centennial State.  We’ll even take some from out of state if we can tie it to Colorado somehow.

We’ll keep the criteria very open to interpretation with just about any image eligible to be shown in our slideshows.

What do you win for having your image in our slideshow?  We are just a ‘mom and pop’ outfit and make no money from our site so we really don’t have the means to provide prizes.  However you will have our undying gratitude and the satisfaction that your images are shared on the most popular website in Thornton.

To share you images with us and get them included in the slideshow just email them to us or share them with ThorntonWeather.com on any of the various social media outlets.  Links are provided below.

So come on, get those camera’s rolling!

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Wednesday temps cool a bit, gusty winds arrive

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015 5:32am MST

The good news for Thornton’s weather today is that while it will be cooler, temperatures will remain well above normal. The bad news is that a weak disturbance is going to usher in some wind.

Temperatures today start out mild and above freezing, thanks in part to the warming downslope winds that have already developed.  Look for the mercury to climb to around 60 degrees under partly sunny skies.  That is much cooler than the 70 degree+ temps of the past two days but well above the average for the date of 44 degrees.

Wind is going to be the main story today.  Gusts over 20mph start things out and after a brief easing around mid-morning, will be picking back up soon after.  By early to mid-afternoon look for winds to 25mph, gusting to 35mph.

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January 25 to January 31: This week in Denver weather history

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015 5:26am MST
This Week In Denver Weather History

January 25 to January 31: This week in Denver weather history

High winds and nasty cold are the two dominant things we see in our look back at this week in Denver weather history. Also notable are some significant snowstorms and even some record-setting high temperatures into the 70s.

From the National Weather Service:


In 1948…the longest period of snowfall on record (92 hours and 3 minutes) occurred in downtown Denver where a total of 13.6 inches of snow fell. At Stapleton Airport…19.0 inches of snow fell…making it the heaviest snow in January and the 5th heaviest snow of record at that time. North winds were sustained to a velocity of 23 mph on the 25th…but generally the winds were light throughout the storm. The snow disrupted traffic…but street clearing was begun soon after it became apparent that the snow would be heavy. Over the 5 days…temperatures ranged from a high of 48 degrees on the 22nd to a low of 1 degree on the 26th. Most readings were in the teens and 20’s during the storm.


In 1916…a trace of light rain…rare in Denver for January… Occurred on both days.

In 1946…high winds occurred in Boulder and along the foothills to the north. A wind gust to 72 mph was recorded at Valmont.

In 1947…strong winds were measured in Boulder. Hourly wind gusts averaged 72 mph at Valmont east of Boulder.

In 1950…heavy snowfall totaled 7.1 inches at Stapleton Airport and 6.8 inches in downtown Denver.


In 1970…a wind gust to 122 mph was recorded at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder on the 24th. Winds also gusted to 109 mph at NCAR on the 26th. Most winds were estimated between 60 and 70 mph in Boulder. Damage…in most cases…was from broken windows and tree limbs and downed power lines. A roof was blown off a house in Eldorado Springs south of Boulder. A building under construction was damaged in Boulder. Reported damage totaled 25 hundred dollars in Boulder. Northwest winds gusted to 47 mph at Stapleton International Airport on the 24th. In Denver…the Chinook winds warmed the temperature to a record high of 68 degrees on the 24th.


In 1872…the greatest temperature change in one day…66 degrees…from a low of 20 degrees below zero…a record low for the date…to a high of 46 degrees…occurred.

In 1888…west winds sustained to 42 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 58 degrees.

In 1890…northwest Chinook winds gusting as high as 48 mph resulted in two temperature records. High temperature of 72 degrees was a record maximum for the date. Low temperature of only 48 degrees was a record high minimum for the date.

In 1914…Chinook winds from the northwest sustained to 46 mph with gusts as high as 60 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 52 degrees. The low temperature was only 39 degrees.

In 1923…snowfall of 1.3 inches was the only measurable snow of the month.

In 1931…snowfall of 0.1 inch was the only measurable snow of the month. The melted snow totaled only 0.02 inch of precipitation…which was the only measurable amount of the month. This resulted in the 4th driest January on record.

In 1964…high winds occurred in Boulder…Golden…and Broomfield where a wind gust to 80 mph was recorded at Jefferson County Airport. Some power lines were downed. Damage to buildings and vehicles was also reported. West-northwest winds gusted to 46 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1971…the highest recorded wind gust in the state of Colorado…147 mph…occurred at the National Center for Atmospheric Research on the mesa in southwest Boulder. Wind gusts to 91 mph were measured at the National Bureau of Standards and to 87 mph in downtown Boulder. A wind gust to 75 mph was recorded at Jefferson County Airport in Broomfield. The strong winds caused widespread minor damage in Boulder. Northwest winds gusting to 32 mph at Stapleton International Airport warmed the temperature to a high of 55 degrees.

In 1980…a blizzard struck Denver right at the evening rush hours…causing massive traffic snarls and forcing the closure of I-25 north of Denver and I-70 east of the city as well as many other roads. Hundreds of travelers were stranded. Multi-car accidents involving as many as 50 cars were common. Air traffic at Stapleton International Airport was stalled for 3 hours. Winds gusted to 50 or 60 mph with visibility reduced to zero at times. The high winds knocked out electrical power in Broomfield. During the height of the storm…temperatures plunged from the freezing mark at mid-afternoon to only 5 degrees before midnight. Initial snowfall from the storm was only 3 to 5 inches across metro Denver with 4.1 inches measured at Stapleton International Airport where north wind gusts to 58 mph were recorded.

In 1988…high winds pummeled the eastern foothills with a peak gust to 96 mph recorded near Rollinsville. A gust to 109 mph was recorded at Echo Lake. West winds gusted to 48 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1996…heavy snow fell along the Front Range foothills. Snow accumulations of 4 to 8 inches were measured from I-25 west into the foothills with lighter accumulations reported elsewhere. Snowfall totaled only 0.9 inch at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport.

In 2004…locally heavy snow fell across metro Denver. The heaviest snow was south of Denver and in the foothills. Snowfall totals included: 9 inches near Indian Hills… 8.5 inches near Franktown and 9 miles southwest of Sedalia…8 inches 7 miles southwest of Aurora…and 6 inches in Highlands Ranch. Snowfall was only 2.8 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North winds gusted to 35 mph at Denver International Airport

In 2008…strong westerly winds blew out three windows at a Chipotle restaurant in Louisville. Two people were taken to the hospital for minor cuts. At Denver International Airport…northeast winds gusted to 35 mph.


In 1910…gale force westerly winds of great velocity struck Boulder. Some damage was reported. West winds were sustained to 45 mph in Denver on the 25th.


In 1897…a cold spell resulted in three temperature records. Low temperature of 14 degrees below zero on the 27th was a record minimum for the date. High temperatures of only 3 degrees on the 25th and 2 degrees on the 26th were record low maximums for the dates. Very light snow or flurries fell on the 25th and 26th at times.


In 1902…the low temperature dipped to 20 degrees below zero.

In 1916…sleet…grains of ice…a rare occurrence in Denver… Fell for 3 hours and 15 minutes…covering the ground.

In 1999…high winds developed in and near the foothills. Peak wind reports included: 82 mph in Boulder and at Jefferson County Airport near Broomfield…79 mph at the Rocky Flats Environmental Test Facility…and 72 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric Research mesa lab near Boulder. West winds gusted to 40 mph at Denver International Airport where the temperature warmed to a high of 54 degrees.

» Click here to read the rest of January 25 to January 31: This week in Denver weather history

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Another extraordinarily mild January day ahead

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015 5:36am MST

The calendar says January but today promises a repeat of yesterday’s very warm temperatures that feel much more like March.  After today though it comes to an end as we start to cool down and may be talking snow this weekend.

For Tuesday high temperatures look to top out around 72 degrees – the same as we saw yesterday.  For comparison, average for today’s date is 44 degrees.  The record for today though is 76 degrees (1888) so we will fall short of that mark.

We will see a few more clouds today but their impact on temperatures will be minimal.  Winds will generally be light.

A weak system moves in tomorrow afternoon and that is going to bring some breezy winds and cool us down.  Highs tomorrow will “only” be in the upper 50s.

Models aren’t entirely in agreement but they do point to a stronger system arriving Friday that could bring snow overnight Friday and into Saturday.  Temperatures from Thursday through Monday look to be much closer to normal.

Keep an eye on today’s climbing mercury here with live gauges here.

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Thornton’s workweek starts out with very warm temperatures

Monday, January 26th, 2015 5:13am MST

We may still have two months of winter left but it sure is hard to believe it with the mild weather conditions.  Mother Nature is going to outdo yesterday’s gorgeous day with even warmer temperatures today and tomorrow.

Look for mostly clear skies as dawn breaks this morning to be following by clearing and sunny skies for the rest of the day.  Winds will be light and out of the southwest.

Temperatures will be climbing quickly and by early afternoon we will be pushing our forecast high of 71 degrees.  The record high temperature for today’s date is 73 and we expect to fall short of that but it will be close.

Tuesday looks to be similar, perhaps a degree or two cooler.  Beyond that, low pressure moves in Wednesday and that will cool things down to the 50s.

The picture for Thursday through the weekend is a bit muddled as models are still hashing out the track and impact of a trough that is expected to move through.  Cooler temperatures are assured but how cool and whether there is precipitation with it is yet to be seen.

The image has your weather outlook for today.  Get the extended forecast here.

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Warming temperatures to lead the way to a very pleasant weekend

Friday, January 23rd, 2015 5:09am MST

We start out the three day period chilly early but then warm to seasonal temperatures Friday.  Saturday and Sunday follow up with above normal temperatures and very mild temperatures.

For today look for us to start relatively cloud free but with increasing cover this morning.  Conditions will be calm and temperatures will be warming to right near the average for the date of 44 degrees.

Overnight tonight the cloud cover will begin to ease and Saturday dawns with mostly clear skies.  With sunny skies above we will be warming to a very comfortable 55 degrees.

Sunday continues the warming trend as we head for a high in the low 60s.

Look for those unseasonably warm conditions to continue into the first part of next week.

Have a great weekend and as always, keep an eye on our main page for all the latest.

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Snow moves out and the sun returns but chilly temps remain

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015 5:42am MST

Our most recent shot of snow is done and the sun stages a return today.  Chilly temperatures will linger but a warm up begins that will last through the weekend.

For today look for clear to mostly clear skies throughout the day.  Definitely plenty of sun to enjoy.  Conditions will be calm, winds light but temperatures will be a bit suppressed.  Look for a high today around 39 degrees.

For the balance of the week and into the weekend, each day will be getting gradually warmer and by Sunday and Monday we may be seeing highs hitting the low 60s.  Extended forecast available here.

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A wintry Wednesday as cold, snow arrive

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015 5:09am MST

A combination of two systems, one from the south and one from the north, bring a change to our recent calm weather.  Thornton will be seeing colder temperatures today and we stand a good chance for accumulating snowfall.

Look for cloudy skies above for most of the day today.  Late in the day may see just a bit of a break in the cover.  Temperatures are going to be well below normal with a high reaching only around 30 degrees.

In terms of snowfall, areas south of I-70, particularly along the Palmer Divide and southern foothills, will be the primary recipients and a Winter Weather Advisory is in effect for those areas.  Further north, we don’t expect to see anything too extraordinary.

Snow will be possible throughout the day with the bulk of it expected to occur between about 11:00am and 6:00pm.  Total accumulations for Thornton and the northern suburbs look to be in the 1 to 3 inch range.

For all the latest with our return to winter conditions, check out our Winter Weather Briefing Page here.

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January 18 to January 24: This week in Denver weather history

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015 8:01am MST
This Week In Denver Weather History

January 18 to January 24: This week in Denver weather history

Our look back in Denver weather history for this week is dominated by the seemingly ever present high winds this time of year.  There are numerous incidents of those causing damage and injury.  Also notable though was a snowstorm in 1948 that dumped snow for more than 92 hours straight, a protracted cold spell in 1962 that lasted nearly a week and claimed lives and more recently the snowstorms in January 2007 that dumped snow on the region.

From the National Weather Service:


In 1930…a protracted cold spell occurred when low temperatures plunged below zero on 8 consecutive days. The coldest low temperatures of 20 degrees below zero on the 17th and 19 degrees below zero on the 16th were record minimums for the dates. High temperatures during the period ranged from 18 on the 18th to zero on the 20th. Two degrees on the 15th was a record low maximum temperature for the date.


In 1962…a protracted cold spell kept metro Denver in the deep freeze for more than a week. From the 15th thru the 23rd…low temperatures were zero or below for 9 consecutive days…but a daily record low was set only on the 22nd when the temperature dipped to 14 degrees below zero. A record low maximum for the date was also set on the 22nd when the temperature climbed to only 11 degrees. The coldest high temperature was 3 degrees above zero on the 21st…which did not break the record. The protracted cold was broken for only a few hours on the afternoon of the 20th when Chinook winds warmed the temperature to a high of 38 degrees before another surge of cold arctic air plunged temperatures back into the deep freeze that evening. The severe cold caused much damage to water systems. A woman was frozen to death at Morrison. There were other deaths attributable to the weather…including traffic deaths and heart attacks from overexertion.


in 1943…light snowfall totaled 3.2 inches over the 3 days. This was the only measurable snow of the month. North winds were sustained to 20 mph on the 16th.

In 2011…very strong winds associated with an upper level jetstream over Colorado produced blizzard conditions in the mountains above timberline. Peak wind gusts included: 99 mph atop Loveland pass…94 mph…2 miles southwest of Mary Jane…80 mph atop Berthoud Pass and 79 mph atop Niwot Ridge. Storm totals in the ski areas west of Denver ranged from 8 to 14 inches.


In 1974…rare overnight January rainfall totaled 0.12 inch on the 17th and 0.26 inch on the 18th when it was briefly mixed with snow.

In 2012…damaging winds developed in and near the Front Range. In Boulder…the high winds knocked down several trees…power poles and electrical lines. Some of the fallen trees damaged homes and automobiles. A semi-trailer was blown on its side along State Highway 93 near Marshall. Peak wind gusts included: 104 mph in south Boulder; 98 mph…3 miles southwest of Pinecliffe; 95 mph…2 miles northwest of Rocky Flats; 92 mph…at State Highway 93 near Marshall; 87 mph at Berthoud Pass and in Boulder Canyon; 80 mph…5 miles west- northwest of Boulder; 83 mph at NCAR Mesa Lab; 78 mph…8 miles northeast of four corners; 79 mph at the National Wind Technology Center; 76 mph at Wondervu; 75 mph atop Loveland Pass and the NCAR foothills lab in Boulder; 74 mph at Blue Mountain…Boulder Municipal Airport…1 mile northwest of Lyons; 73 mph…4 miles east-northeast of Nederland; 72 mph at the junction of State Highways 72 and 93; 62 mph in Superior; and 61 mph at Erie Municipal Airport. A peak wind gust of 38 mph from the northwest was observed at Denver International Airport.


In 1874…light rain…rare in January…changed to snow which totaled 3 inches.

In 1959…strong gusty winds caused damage to buildings… Airplanes…trees…and a radio tower in Boulder… Broomfield…Denver…and Longmont. A wind gust to 70 mph was recorded in Longmont. In Boulder…the top of a radio tower was toppled and signs…trees…and trailer houses were blown over. In southwest Denver…a mother and child were injured when their car was struck by a sign that had blown loose in the wind. Minor damage to buildings and power lines was reported in the area. Northwest winds gusted to 38 mph at Stapleton Airport. Post-frontal east northeast winds gusted to 40 mph.

In 1961…northeast winds gusted to 29 mph and snowfall totaled only 0.1 inch at Stapleton Airport…but 2 to 7 inches of snow fell in the foothills west of Denver.

In 1975…a strong cold front roared through metro Denver producing north wind gusts to 52 mph and briefly reducing the visibility at Stapleton International Airport to less than 5/8 mile in blowing dust. The windstorm caused considerable damage to utility lines…homes…fences… Commercial buildings…autos…and schools. Heaviest damage was near the foothills where winds hit 80 mph at Boulder and at Rocky Flats northwest of Denver. The cold front caused temperatures to drop 13 degrees in one hour. Temperatures fell from a maximum of 61 degrees in the early afternoon to a minimum of 31 degrees before midnight.

In 1984…the coldest morning of the new year produced record breaking temperatures with a low of 19 degrees below zero for the date at Denver. Many other cities also reported record cold.

In 1985…highs winds occurred in the foothills with gusts reported to 60 mph at Evergreen. Northwest winds gusted to 38 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1986…wind gusts to 60 mph were reported in Boulder. West winds gusted to 31 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1999…damaging downslope winds caused problems in the foothills. In Eldora…the roof was blown off an a-frame house. Peak wind gusts included: 100 mph at central city…84 mph at Wondervu…77 mph atop Blue Mountain… 75 mph in Golden Gate Canyon…72 mph at the Rocky Flats Environmental Test Facility…and 70 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric Research Mesa Laboratory near Boulder. West winds gusted to 36 mph and warmed the temperature to a high of 63 degrees…the highest reading of the month at Denver International Airport.

In 2006…high winds occurred in northern Jefferson and southern Boulder counties. A peak wind gust to 81 mph was recorded near superior along with a gust to 80 mph near Boulder. Five teenagers started a grassfire near Plainview atop Rocky Flats. The high winds coupled with very dry conditions allowed the fire to quickly spread…forcing the evacuation of dozens of residents and the closure of State Highways 93 and 72. The fire consumed 2700 acres and destroyed two outbuildings. No homes were damaged and no one was injured by the blaze. West winds gusted to 30 mph at Denver International Airport.

» Click here to read the rest of January 18 to January 24: This week in Denver weather history

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