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UpdatedThu, 17-Aug-2017 3:25am MDT 
 

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Weather conditions turn cooler, become unsettled for Tuesday

Tuesday, April 25th, 2017 5:12am MDT

As promised, a change in the weather pattern has arrived as the first in a series of fronts moves through. This one will bring us cooler temperatures today, a chance for showers later and perhaps even a bit of snow overnight.

We start out the day with mostly cloudy skies and can expect more of the same throughout the daytime hours. Winds will initially be calm but by mid-afternoon they will shift out of the north and become gusty through the evening and into the first part of tonight. Temperatures today will be climbing to a high in the mid-50s, a good ways below the average for the date of 64 degrees.

Moisture will be increasing as the day progresses and we begin to see a slight chance for showers and thunderstorms after noon with the best chances occurring from about 4:00pm to 9:00pm. After 9:00pm, things will have cooled off enough that we may see some snow fall although at this time we are not expecting any accumulation.

Precipitation should end in the early morning hours tomorrow and overnight lows will dip to right near freezing.

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Former Obama Official Says Bureaucrats Manipulate Climate Stats to Influence Policy

Tuesday, April 25th, 2017 3:23am MDT

A former member of the Obama administration claims Washington D.C. often uses “misleading” news releases about climate data to influence public opinion. Former Energy Department Undersecretary Steven Koonin told The Wall Street Journal Monday that bureaucrats within former President Barack Obama’s administration spun scientific data to manipulate public opinion. “What you saw coming out of the… » Click here to read the rest of Former Obama Official Says Bureaucrats Manipulate Climate Stats to Influence Policy

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Thornton to enjoy a mild Monday, by the end of the day, signs of change

Monday, April 24th, 2017 5:42am MDT

Today will be the last unseasonably warm day of the week. In fact, by tonight we should start feeling the effects of the first of a series of systems that will bring cooler, unsettled weather through the weekend.

For today we start out with mostly sunny skies then will see a slow buildup of cloud cover leading to mostly cloudy skies by the evening. Temperatures will be warming up to a pleasant high right near the 70 degree mark.

This evening we see a slight chance for thunderstorms then similar chances for overnight showers. We aren’t expecting much in the way of precipitation however. Overnight lows tonight will be dipping to the low to mid-40s.

For the balance of the week, a series of three storm systems coupled with cold fronts will usher in cooler temperatures and varying chances of precipitation. We may even be seeing some early morning snow on a couple of days. Get more details in the extended forecast here.

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April 23 to April 29: This week in Denver weather history

Sunday, April 23rd, 2017 8:02am MDT
This Week In Denver Weather History

April 23 to April 29: This week in Denver weather history

Certainly April can bring pleasant weather but it also can bring thunderstorms and even heavy, damaging snow as we see in our look back at this week in Denver weather history.

From the National Weather Service:

20-23

In 1989…unusually warm weather resulted in several daily temperature records being broken in Denver. The high temperature of 89 degrees on the 21st exceeded the record maximum for the month at that time. Daily record high temperatures were either exceeded or equaled with 83 degrees on the 20th…88 degrees on the 22nd…and 85 degrees on the 23rd. The low temperature of 55 degrees on the 22nd equaled the record high minimum for the date.

21-23

In 1999…a spring snowstorm dumped heavy snowfall over metro Denver and in the foothills. Nearly 3 feet of snow fell in the foothills with over a foot in the city. The heavy wet snow downed power lines in Douglas and Elbert counties. Scattered outages were reported at Parker…Franktown… Sedalia…and Castle Rock. Some residents were without electricity for as long as 20 hours. The inclement weather was blamed…at least in part…for several traffic accidents along the I-25 corridor between Denver and Castle Rock. Snowfall totals included: 32 inches at Idaho Springs; 31 inches on Crow Hill; 29 inches near Evergreen; 26 inches at Chief Hosa and Coal Creek Canyon; 25 inches at Bailey; 24 inches at Floyd Hill; 23 inches at conifer…Genesee…Golden Gate Canyon…North Turkey Creek…and Pine Junction; 13 inches at Broomfield and near Sedalia; 12 inches in Boulder; 11 inches at Louisville and Parker; and 9 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport.

In 2004…heavy snow fell across metro Denver…when low level upslope conditions developed against the foothills and Palmer Divide. Snowfall totals included: 18 inches in the foothills southwest of Boulder…17 inches at Intercanyon and near Conifer…10 inches near Blackhawk and Parker…9 inches at Castle Rock and near Sedalia…7 inches in Centennial… Littleton…and near Lone Tree. Elsewhere across metro Denver…snowfall generally ranged from 2 to 5 inches. Snowfall was 4.7 inches at Denver Stapleton. Northwest winds gusted to 35 mph at Denver International Airport on the 21st.

22-23

In 1885…the worst snow storm since station records began in 1872 dumped a total of 24.0 inches of snowfall on the city. The 23.0 inches of snow recorded on the 22nd and 23rd was the greatest 24-hour snowfall ever recorded during the month of April. Streets were impassable…roofs caved in… Telegraph and telephone wires were downed…railroads were blocked and trains delayed…and most business came to a complete standstill. Estimated losses were reported to 50 thousand dollars. The total snowfall was partly estimated due to melting. Precipitation from the storm totaled 2.79 inches.

In 1915…post-frontal rain during the day and overnight totaled 2.00 inches. Most of the rain fell on the 22nd.

In 1945…6.7 inches of snow fell over downtown Denver. This was the third major snow in a little over 3 weeks…which made this month the 4th snowiest on record. Northeast winds were sustained to 25 mph and light hail fell on the 22nd.

In 2013…a spring storm brought heavy snow to the mountains… with period of moderate to heavy snow to portions of the Front Range Foothills and Urban Corridor. In the mountains and foothills…storm totals included: 18 inches at Niwot Ridge SNOTEL; 16.5 inches near Ward; 13 inches at Arapahoe Basin and Roach SNOTEL…12 inches near Blackhawk; 11.5 inches near Nederland; 11 inches near Allenspark and at Loveland Ski Area; 10 inches near Idaho Springs and Pinecliffe; with 9.5 inches and near Silverthorne. Along the Urban Corridor storm totals included: 7.5 inches near Morrison; 7 inches at the National Weather Service Office in Boulder and Niwot; 6.5 inches near Arapahoe Park and Superior; with 6 inches at Lafayette and Lakewood. At Denver International Airport…4.7 inches of new snowfall was observed.

22-24

In 2010…a potent spring storm brought heavy…wet snow to areas in and near the Front Range foothills and widespread rainfall across the adjacent plains. In the Front Range foothills and north-central mountains east of the Continental Divide…storm totals ranged from 15 to 30 inches. Storm totals included: 29.5 inches…3 miles southeast of Pinecliffe; 27 inches…8 miles northeast of four corners; 23 inches at Willow Creek; 22.5 inches… 13 miles northwest of Golden; 21 inches at Never Summer; 17 inches at Eldorado Springs; 16.5 inches…3 miles west of Jamestown. Denver International Airport reported just a trace of snowfall…but measured 2.01 inches of rainfall for the duration of the storm. In addition…a peak wind gust to 54 mph from the northwest was observed at the airport on the 23rd

23

In 1889…north winds were sustained to 48 mph.

In 1913…northeast winds were sustained to 46 mph with gusts to 60 mph behind a dry cold front.

In 1914…a thunderstorm produced considerable hail and 0.29 inch of rain. West winds were sustained to 42 mph with gusts to 48 mph.

In 1942…hail of unknown size fell over the city.

In 1958…a funnel cloud was sighted for 20 minutes…15 miles southeast of Stapleton Airport. The funnel formed in advance of a thunderstorm and hung about a thousand feet below the base of the cloud…but remained aloft. Later in the day…3.6 inches of snow fell at Stapleton Airport.

In 2002…persistent dry conditions in the foothills contributed to the first large forest fire of the season near Bailey. Very dry and windy conditions allowed the fire…initially started by a careless smoker…to grow into a 2400-acre blaze before it could be contained. Fortunately…no significant damage occurred to homes or other property in the area.

In 2006…severe thunderstorms produced large hail across metro Denver. Hail as large as 1.25 inches in diameter fell in south Denver with hail to 0.88 inch across the rest of the city. Hail to 1.00 inch in diameter was reported near Morrison…in south Lakewood…and in Aurora near Cherry Creek. Hail to 0.88 inch was measured in Golden with 0.75 inch hail in east Lakewood.

» Click here to read the rest of April 23 to April 29: This week in Denver weather history

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Severe Weather 101 – Severe Weather Awareness Week wrap up

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017 5:10am MDT
Supercell thunderstorms like this can be beautiful - but they can also be deadly. Do you know what to do when severe weather strikes? (Stormscape Photography / FLICKR)

Supercell thunderstorms like this can be beautiful – but they can also be deadly. Do you know what to do when severe weather strikes? (Stormscape Photography / FLICKR)

Over the past week we have highlighted some of the severe weather hazards that we face in Colorado every spring and summer in our Severe Weather 101 series.  The dangers these present are significant and not to be taken lightly.

Tornadoes grab most of the headlines and certainly are a danger however others like lightning and flooding are more common and actually claim more lives.  We ask all of our readers to please, take the time to review these important articles – they could save yours and your family’s lives!

The National Weather Service has published a nice wrap up of Severe Weather Awareness Week that covers all the basics – see it below.  For more in depth information, please use the links at the bottom to view each article on our Severe Weather 101 series.  Be safe and be weatherwise!

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAND JUNCTION CO
600 AM MDT SAT APR 22 2017

SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK IN REVIEW

Severe Weather Awareness Week in review…

Severe Weather Awareness Week in Colorado concludes today. During the past week we have presented information and safety rules for tornadoes, lightning and wildfires, floods and flash floods, straight-line thunderstorm winds, hail, and our warning programs.

We will now review some of the most important safety rules in our effort to build a Weather-Ready Nation.

Be weather-wise by staying informed on expected weather in your area. The National Weather Service is typically aware of the potential for severe weather many hours or even days before any severe weather watches or warnings are issued, providing forecast products to heighten your awareness. A Weather Story product is posted each day on National Weather Service Internet pages and Facebook pages which includes a map and text on possible hazardous weather expected within the next seven days.

A Hazardous Weather Outlook is also issued daily with information on possible hazardous weather through the next seven days. A watch is issued when conditions for severe weather or flooding become possible. A warning is then issued when life threatening conditions are imminent or occurring.

Tornadoes

Tornadoes can even strike in mountain areas. In 2008 on August 23rd, this rope tornado struck Park County near Eleven Mile Reservoir. Image courtesy Jerry Bivens.

Tornadoes can even strike in mountain areas. In 2008 on August 23rd, this rope tornado struck Park County near Eleven Mile Reservoir. Image courtesy Jerry Bivens.

The best way to protect yourself from tornadoes is to have a plan of action. The safest place to be if a tornado approaches is in a basement or safe room within a well-built structure, or in an underground storm shelter. If none of these options are available, move to a hallway or a small interior room on the lowest floor, usually this is a closet or bathroom. Get under a heavy piece of furniture or in a bath tub and cover yourself with blankets. Remember, the greatest risk of injury from tornadoes is from flying debris.

Modular homes and mobile homes, even those tied down, offer little protection from tornadoes. If a tornado approaches, leave those locations and seek safety in a nearby sturdy building or storm shelter.

If you are driving in open country and see a tornado, if time permits, the best thing to do is simply drive away from the tornado path. Do not take shelter beneath a highway overpass. Wind speeds may actually be higher in these areas and often become collection points for debris.

If you are caught outside and cannot seek shelter inside a sturdy structure, crawl into a culvert or lie down in a narrow ditch or ravine and cover your head. But remember that the worst place to be when a tornado threatens is outside in the midst of flying debris.

Lightning

Lightning usually kills and injures more people in Colorado than any other thunderstorm hazard. Lightning also causes many wildfires.

The best defense to protect yourself against a lightning strike is to plan ahead and avoid being caught where you might be vulnerable. Check weather forecasts prior to venturing out, especially if you are heading into the mountains. Plan outdoor activities early in the day before storms develop.

If thunderstorms threaten, seek shelter in a building or in an enclosed metal-roof vehicle, making sure all windows and doors are closed. Never seek shelter under an isolated tree. During thunderstorms, stay off corded telephones, away from electrical devices, and away from plumbing. Also get out of shower stalls, bath tubs, swimming pools and lakes when lightning is nearby.

You should wait at least 30 minutes after the last sound of thunder before resuming outdoor activities. When thunder roars…go indoors.

Floods and Flash Floods

The Big Thompson Flood in 1976 claimed the lives of 144 Coloradoans and serves to remind us of the dangers of floods. (USGS)

The Big Thompson Flood in 1976 claimed the lives of 144 Coloradoans and serves to remind us of the dangers of floods. (USGS)

When flooding or flash flooding is possible, you should remain alert and be ready to quickly evacuate to higher ground or climb to safety. Flash floods often occur suddenly and without warning. You need to follow some basic flood safety rules:

  • Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams and washes, particularly during threatening conditions.
  • If you are near a river, be aware of water levels and be prepared to move to higher ground if river levels rise.
  • Do not enter areas that are already flooded.
  • If walking or fishing along a river, be aware that erosion from swift running water can cause river banks to collapse.
  • Never let your children play around high water, storm drains, viaducts or arroyos.

At least half of all flash flood fatalities are vehicle related. While driving your automobile, look out for flooding at highway dips, bridges and low areas. Two feet of moving water will carry away most vehicles. Never attempt to drive across a flooded road. And be especially cautious at night when it is difficult to see flood dangers.

Strong Straight-Line Winds

Straight-line winds from thunderstorms, including microbursts, can become quite strong, even reaching speeds in excess of 100 mph in extreme cases. When thunderstorms approach, high winds can suddenly develop, causing things on the ground to become swift moving airborne missiles with a potential force to injure or kill. As with any thunderstorm, seek shelter before the storm arrives.

Hail

This is one of the largest recorded hail stones which is more than 7 inches in diameter and fell in Nebraska in 2003. (NOAA)

This is one of the largest recorded hail stones which is more than 7 inches in diameter and fell in Nebraska in 2003. (NOAA)

Large hail can pose a danger to animals and people. Hail also produces considerable damage to crops and personal property each year in Colorado. Again, get indoors before thunderstorms arrive. A fall of small hail can suddenly change to a fall of very large ice missiles which can injure or kill. Make efforts to protect personal property before storms threaten.

Warning Notification

When thunderstorms threaten, tune to NOAA All-Hazards Weather Radio, The Weather Channel, or your local radio or television stations. Also check the Internet web site from the National Weather Service office serving your area. And if you have a relatively new cell phone you should receive Tornado and Flash Flood Warnings on your phone if you are in the area of the warning.

During threatening weather days, plan the actions you will need to take so that you will be prepared if dangerous weather conditions actually develop.

NOAA’s National Weather Service wishes you a safe severe weather season.

Severe Weather Awareness Week in Colorado concludes today. During the past week we have presented information and safety rules for tornadoes, lightning and wildfires, floods and flash floods, straight-line thunderstorm winds, hail, and our warning programs.

 

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Severe Weather 101 – Lightning and lightning safety

Friday, April 21st, 2017 5:08am MDT
This is NOT the time to be outside. (michaeljames / FLICKR)

This is NOT the time to be outside. (michaeljames / FLICKR)

Of all the weather types associated with thunderstorms – hail, tornadoes, floods, etc – lightning is usually the most dangerous. In the United States there are an estimated 25 million cloud to ground lightning flashes each year and each one is a potential threat to life and property.

During the past 10 years there has been an annual average of 39 lightning fatalities in the United States. Last year, 23 people lost their lives due to lightning.

Colorado is ranked # 2 in lightning related deaths (2001 – 2010) so the danger this presents to life and property is very significant for us. It is interesting to note though that Colorado ranks only 32nd in the number of cloud to ground strikes over that same period. Which means, in short, we have fewer strikes than many other states and yet more deaths.

This highlights the fact that, quite frankly, folks here in Colorado are not aware of the dangers lightning presents and they do not take proper steps to protect themselves. One of the great things about Colorado are the outdoor activities we all enjoy, but there comes a time when we need to head indoors.

» Click here to read the rest of Severe Weather 101 – Lightning and lightning safety

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Thornton’s weekend weather starts unsettled, rebounds at the end

Friday, April 21st, 2017 5:07am MDT

We finally broke out of the recent warm, dry pattern with some nice, soaking rain over the past 12 hours or so. Some showers will be lingering through today and tomorrow but then Sunday we dry out and warm back up.

For today we don’t expect to see much sun above, if at all, as the storm system very gradually winds down. High temperatures will be cool with highs only in the mid to upper 40s. Look for winds to be a bit breezy from later this morning through the afternoon. In terms of precipitation, some occasional, scattered shower activity can be expected throughout the day and into tomorrow morning.

Overnight tonight lows will be dropping to close to the freezing mark. Those low temperatures may lead to a few snowflakes in the pre-dawn hours but nothing that will be measurable.

Saturday will be a day of transition as the last pieces of the system work their way out. Highs will be in the upper 50s, perhaps hitting the 60 degree mark. Some sprinkles of rain will be possible throughout the day. Skies will be overcast initially then the late morning and afternoon should bring some clearing.

Saturday night into Sunday morning skies will continue to clear. Lows into Sunday morning will be in the mid to upper 30s.

We close out the weekend on Sunday with a gorgeous day. Look for lots of sun to be above and temperatures will bounce back with highs in the mid-70s.

Have a great weekend and use our radar to keep track of those lingering showers.

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April 16 to April 22: This week in Denver weather history

Thursday, April 20th, 2017 4:27pm MDT
This Week In Denver Weather History

April 16 to April 22: This week in Denver weather history

As we enter the latter half of April the weather history calendar starts to reflect shift in the type of weather events we see. There are still plenty of significant snowfall events. However spring severe weather starts to appear with greater frequency including heavy rain, hail and even tornadoes.

From the National Weather Service:

13-17

In 2001…a huge dust storm over southern and Inner Mongolia during April 3rd through the 6th lifted desert dust into the jet stream. This dust cloud moved over metro Denver on the 13th and persisted through the 17th. The cloud created widespread haze…giving the sky a milkish cast due to the scattering of incoming solar radiation.

15-16

In 1900…heavy rainfall totaled 2.33 inches. A trace of snow was mixed with the rain at times.

In 1950…thunderstorms and heavy rain behind a cold front produced 2.13 inches of rain in 24 hours at Stapleton Airport.

In 2003…a fast moving pacific storm system moved across Colorado allowing strong winds to develop over the eastern foothills and metro Denver. Northwest winds gusted to 59 mph at Denver International Airport late in the evening of the 15th.

15-17

In 1922…heavy snowfall totaled 9.0 inches in downtown Denver. Most of the snow…6.0 inches…fell on the 16th. This was the third major snow storm in a week. Northwest winds were sustained to 43 mph with gusts to 47 mph on the 15th.

16

In 1960…a wind storm struck all of metro Denver. Estimated wind gusts up to 80 mph were registered in Boulder. At Stapleton Airport sustained west-northwest winds over 50 mph with gusts as high as 70 mph produced some blowing dust. The high winds damaged buildings…power and telephone lines…and signs. Five people were injured in metro Denver as a result of the wind storm. Blowing dust reduced visibility at times. The winds were strong and gusty for most of the day.

16-17

In 1944…heavy snowfall totaled 7.5 inches in downtown Denver. Northwest winds were sustained to 18 mph on the 16th.

16-18

In 2009…a potent spring storm brought heavy snow to locations in and near the Front Range foothills. A deep easterly upslope produced nearly 5 feet of snow in parts of the foothills. The heavy snow resulted in the closure of Interstate 70…from Golden west to Vail…for approximately 16 hours. The heavy snow snapped power lines in Evergreen and Nederland. The ensuing outages affected 14200 residents. In the Front Range foothills…storm totals included: 56 inches…3 miles south of Rollinsville; 54 inches…3 miles southeast of Pinecliffe…43 inches at Aspen Springs…42 inches at Evergreen…38 inches near conifer; 37 inches at St. Mary’s glacier…and 34 inches near Nederland. Along the urban corridor and Palmer Divide…the heaviest snow occurred above 5500 feet on the 17th. Storm totals included: 22 inches…8.5 miles southwest of Franktown; 18 inches…10 miles south-southeast of Buckley Air Force Base; 17 inches near Cherry Creek and 7 miles south of Sedalia… 16 inches…6.5 miles southwest of Castle Rock; 15 inches near Beverly Hills; 12 inches near Highlands Ranch and Lafayette…with 11 inches in Broomfield. Elsewhere storm totals ranged from 4 to 10 inches. Officially…only 2.6 inches of snow was observed at Denver International Airport. The 24-hr precipitation for the day however was 1.16 inches… Which established a new record for April 17th.

17

In 1889…northwest winds were sustained to 48 mph.

In 1899…apparent post-frontal north winds were sustained to 42 mph with gusts as high as 48 mph.

In 1935…light dust moved over the city behind an apparent dry cold front…which produced northeast winds to 19 mph with gusts to 20 mph.

In 1978…winds estimated to 70 mph occurred in Morrison. Northwest winds gusted to 49 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 2000…strong pre-frontal winds and widely scattered thunderstorms caused high winds to develop across northern metro Denver and portions of the northeast plains. Peak wind gusts included 75 mph at Louisville. South winds gusted to only 28 mph at Denver International Airport.

In 2002…strong southwest winds in advance of a cold front gusted to 52 mph at Denver International Airport.

In 2003…severe thunderstorms produced 1 inch diameter hail 7 miles east of Brighton. Strong thunderstorm winds blew out an auto windshield near Denver International Airport where south winds gusted to 48 mph.

17-18

In 1878…the wind blew violently all day on the 17th with a maximum sustained velocity of 40 mph. Dust hung over the city like a cloud. The relative humidity was zero nearly all day. A terrific gale blew overnight. There was much damage to buildings…signs…fences…etc. Some wind gusts were so strong as to jar buildings to their foundations. The station anemometer recorded sustained winds to 50 mph with higher gusts before it was damaged by the winds. The winds moderated during the day on the 18th and ended at sunset.

In 1894…post-frontal rain changed to snow on the 17th around sunrise and continued through 9:00 am on the 18th. Snowfall totaled 10.5 inches…but most of the snow melted as it fell. The high temperature warmed to only 35 degrees on the 17th after a high of 76 on the 16th. Northeast winds were sustained to 30 mph with gusts to 32 mph on the 17th.

In 1998…more spring snow fell across metro Denver and in the foothills. Snowfall totals included: 11 inches at Golden Gate Canyon; 10 inches at Highlands Ranch; 9 inches at Elizabeth; 8 inches at Broomfield and Morrison; and 7 inches at Chief Hosa…Evergreen…Littleton…and Sedalia. Snowfall totaled only 3.2 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North winds gusted to 22 mph at Denver International Airport.

17-19

In 1920…snow fell across the city continuously for 57 hours… From the early morning of the 17th until 11:40 am on the 19th. The heavy wet snowfall totaled 18.2 inches with the greatest accumulation on the ground of 12 inches. Winds during the storm were strong with sustained speeds in excess of 27 mph for over 40 consecutive hours…which created near-blizzard conditions. The highest recorded wind speeds were 44 mph with gusts to 50 mph from the north on the 17th and 39 mph with gusts to 48 mph from the northwest on the 18th. The strong winds piled the snow into high drifts which stopped all Denver traffic. Railroads were blocked with only one train entering the city on the 19th. All interurban trains were blocked…as were the 13 trolley lines. Thus…many workers were unable to get home at night and filled all of the downtown hotels to capacity. No grocery or fuel deliveries were possible… Except milk and coal to hospitals and to families with babies. No lives were lost in the city…but several people perished in surrounding districts. Stock losses were heavy on the plains. Temperatures during the storm were in the 20’s.

18

In 1877…strong winds blew all day with an average sustained velocity of 36 mph. The maximum sustained velocity was 60 mph. No significant damage was reported.

In 1903…northwest winds were sustained to 48 mph with gusts to 53 mph.

In 1936…light dust spread over the city from the east on southeast winds gusting to 25 mph. The surface visibility was reduced to about 2 miles at times.

In 1940…this date marked the start of the longest period without snow…200 days…through November 3…1940. A trace of snow fell on both April 17…1940…and November 4…1940.

In 1963…strong winds were prevalent all day across metro Denver. West-northwest winds gusting to 60 mph produced some blowing dust at Stapleton Airport.

In 1971…a microburst wind gust to 59 mph produced some blowing dust at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1978…high winds caused much blowing dust over the plains. Wind gusts from 80 to 96 mph were reported in Boulder with 80 mph measured on Lookout Mountain. Northwest winds gusted to 43 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 2000…high winds developed in the foothills of Boulder County. Peak wind gusts included 71 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric Research mesa lab near Boulder. In Aurora…three workers were injured when strong winds caused a home under construction to partially collapse. Two received minor injuries…while the third worker had to be hospitalized with severe back injuries. South winds gusted to 47 mph at Denver International Airport.

In 2002…strong northeast winds behind a cold front gusted to 53 mph at Denver International Airport where some blowing dust briefly reduced the visibility to 3 miles.

» Click here to read the rest of April 16 to April 22: This week in Denver weather history

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Severe Weather 101 – Hail and Wind

Thursday, April 20th, 2017 5:19am MDT
Straight line winds can be as damaging as a tornado. This image is from a park in Tennessee. (NWS)

Straight line winds can be as damaging as a tornado. This image is from a park in Tennessee. (NWS)

During the spring and summer months in Colorado, a wide array of severe weather can strike. Tornadoes may grab all the headlines, but straight line winds and hail can do a great amount of damage in their own right – and they are more common.

Straight line winds are winds out of a thunderstorm and are classified as severe when they hit 58 mph. These winds can reach tornado and hurricane force and as a result, cause property damage and can injure and even kill animals and humans.

These winds are usually the result of air cooling rapidly due to precipitation or evaporation. As the cooler air is heavier than the surrounding warmer air, it rushes downward, accelerating toward the ground and spreads out as it hits, much like pancake batter being poured onto a griddle.

» Click here to read the rest of Severe Weather 101 – Hail and Wind

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Thornton’s Thursday cools down, brings chances for showers

Thursday, April 20th, 2017 5:17am MDT

We now return you to your more typical April weather. The warm, dry conditions of recent days are done for now and today we begin a brief period of cooler, possibly wetter weather.

The day today starts out mostly clear but clouds will be increasing through the morning and early afternoon as a trough approaches. Winds will be light but then have the potential to be a bit gusty later in the day. Temperatures will be climbing to a high right near the average for today’s date of 62 degrees.

The afternoon ushers in our first chance at precipitation in quite a while. A few showers, possibly with some thunder mixed in, will be possible from noon into the evening. By about 7:00pm, showers should increase in coverage and give us decent chances at precipitation through the early morning hours tomorrow.

Overnight lows tonight will drop to around 40 degrees.

Keep an eye out for those showers with our interactive radar here.

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