Updated Monday, 3/17, 9:50am – The National Weather Service has cancelled the Heavy Snow Warning for the Denver metro area. Light snow early this morning should come to an end in most areas by late this morning and little additional snow accumulation is anticipated. We should see gradual warming with dry and seasonal temperatures at least until Friday.
Updated Monday, 3/17, 6:00am, Heavy Snow Warning Remains in Effect – Well, thus far the storm hasn’t quite shaped up as it was expected to, at least in the Denver metro area. The one component that is really missing for heavy snowfall is a good, strong upslope wind. Upslope winds have a northeasterly / easterly component and are what typically is required for us to see big snows and that just hasn’t happened – at least not enough of one. Things started out strong yesterday evening with some good snow falling around 8:00pm but it didn’t last long.
Western Kansas on the other hand appears to be bearing the brunt of the storm with a mix of blowing snow and thunderstorms. Indeed, our lightning detector was picking up a number of strikes out there during the 5:00am hour although that has since dissipated.
Looking at the rest of today, we do still remain under a Heavy Snow Warning until 3:00pm although if things don’t change, that could be lifted sooner. Radar does show moisture coming up from the south of the metro area and forecasts still call for an additional 3 to 5 inches possible this morning. However, with the temperatures staying near freezing, much of that will melt rather than accumulate.
Updated 3/16, 5:15pm – It is looking more and more like this storm will be a reality. The National Weather Service has upgraded the advisory to a Heavy Snow Warning that goes into effect at midnight tonight and runs through 3:00pm tomorrow. Current projections are still a bit flakey and show that we will receive anywhere from 4 to 12 inches of snow by the time the storm moves out tomorrow afternoon. As is typical in Colorado and especially with spring storms, we could even see sunshine by the end of the day tomorrow.
A heavy snow warning means severe winter weather conditions are expected or occurring. Significant amounts of snow are forecast that will make travel dangerous if not impossible. Only travel in an emergency. If you must…keep an extra flashlight…food…and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency.
3/16/08, 4:27am, Snow Last Night, Heavy Snow Warning In Effect For Tonight – Thornton woke up to a bit of a surprise this morning with some of the white stuff on the ground – just shy of half an inch at ThorntonWeather.com. The forecast did say there was a chance but it was pretty slim so it wasn’t really expected. It is a typical spring snow with lots of good moisture in it so it is welcome. We should be mostly dry for most of the daylight hours today but the structure of the system is such that some thunder could be heard today – a bit of a herald of the spring thunderstorms that will be coming soon. Heading into late afternoon and this evening things will change.
The Pacific storm we have been waiting for is on its way and the National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watchthat goes into effect late tonight and runs through Monday morning. The track of this system is still a bit uncertain so the forecasts and models are hedging their bets a bit. Current models are across the board for precipitation totals and locations so it is tough to say what we are going to end up with. At the current time we would expect Thornton to see 3 to 7 inches of snow by the time the storm moves out tomorrow.
Remember that a Winter Storm Watch means there is a potential for a hazardous winter event in and close to our area. Significant snow accumulations may occur that could impact travel. Tomorrow morning’s commute could be a bit ugly so plan on leaving for work early.