Heavy, wet snow is the hallmark of March in Denver and we see many events containing just that in our look back at this week in Denver weather history.
From the National Weather Service:
In 1989…unusually warm weather set four daily temperature records in Denver. The high temperature of 74 degrees on the 8th exceeded the record. Records were equaled on the 9th with a high of 77 degrees and the 10th with a high of 79 degrees. The low temperature of 42 degrees on the 10th set a new record high minimum for the date.
In 1904…strong Chinook winds raked the city for 2 days. On the 9th…west winds sustained to 53 mph with gusts to 62 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 55 degrees. On the 10th… West winds were sustained to 48 mph with gusts to 54 mph. The high temperature was 58 degrees.
In 1927…rain changed to heavy snow behind a cold front and totaled 7.7 inches over downtown Denver. North winds were sustained to 37 mph with an extreme velocity to 38 mph on the 11th.
In 1955…a strong windstorm raked the eastern foothills. A wind gust to 95 mph was recorded at Rocky Flats with a gust to 60 mph measured at Valmont. Damage in Boulder totaled 10 thousand dollars. Minor injuries also occurred. The strong winds were associated with a vigorous cold front that produced northwest winds at 40 mph with gusts as high as 52 mph at Stapleton Airport where the visibility was briefly reduced to 3/4 mile in blowing dust on the 10th.
In 1968…5.5 inches of snow fell at Stapleton International Airport where northeast winds gusted to 24 mph on the 10th.
In 1906…an extended cold and blustery period occurred with light snow totaling 14.4 inches over 11 consecutive days. The greatest amount of snow on a single day was 4.0 inches on the 15th. Only a trace of snow fell on the 12th and 17th. High temperatures were below freezing for the entire period. The coldest were 14 degrees on the 16th and 18 degrees on the 17th. Both readings were record low maximums for the dates. Low temperatures were mostly in the single digits. The coldest were 2 degrees below zero on the 16th and 5 degrees below zero on the 19th. Northeast winds were sustained to 22 mph on the 9th. North winds were sustained to 36 mph on the 10th…32 mph on the 13th…and 22 mph on the 15th.
In 1893…northwest winds were sustained to 48 mph with gusts to 60 mph in the city.
In 1948…the high temperature warmed to only 6 degrees… The all-time record low maximum for the month of March. The same reading also occurred on March 6…1920.
In 1970…5.0 inches of snow fell at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 21 mph.
In 1886…snowfall of 3.5 inches was measured in downtown Denver. Apparent post-frontal north winds were sustained to 43 mph on the 11th.
In 1977…a major blizzard struck metro Denver. Snowfall totaled 8.0 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north winds at speeds of 30 to 40 mph with gusts to 60 mph frequently reduced visibilities in blowing snow to 1/4 mile or less. Most of the snow…7.7 inches…fell on the 10th. The snow ended by daybreak on the 11th…but strong north winds persisted through the day.
In 1988…a late winter storm produced heavy snow and wind… Mainly north of Denver. Wind gusts reached 62 mph at Keenesburg and produced a lot of blowing snow…closing schools in southwest weld County. The storm closed I-70 east of Denver. Only 1.1 inch of snow fell at Stapleton International Airport…but north winds gusted to 39 mph.
In 1924…snowfall was heavy and totaled 9.9 inches over downtown Denver. North winds were sustained to 18 mph on the 11th.
In 2001…heavy snow fell over northeast Colorado and metro Denver when a combination of upslope winds and convective snow bands formed over the area. Storm totals included: 11 inches at the Eldora Ski Resort; 10 inches at Genesee; 8 inches at Elizabeth…atop Lookout Mountain…near Sedalia… And at Strasburg; 7 inches near Castle Rock and Evergreen; and 6 inches in Aurora…atop Crow Hill…and in Parker. Elsewhere across metro Denver…snowfall ranged from 2 to 5 inches with 3.9 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North winds gusted to 28 mph at Denver International Airport on the 10th.
In 1896…northwest winds were sustained to 40 mph with gusts to 56 mph.
In 1991…the passage of a strong pacific cold front produced winds in excess of 60 mph across metro Denver. Blowing dust reduced the visibility to 2 miles at Stapleton International Airport where northwest winds gusted to 49 mph. A blizzard across eastern Colorado closed I-70 from Watkins to the east…but Denver escaped the storm with only a trace of snowfall.
In 1929…heavy snowfall totaled 9.3 inches in downtown Denver. Northwest winds were sustained to 31 mph with gusts to 34 mph on the 11th.
In 1947…heavy snowfall totaled 7.0 inches in downtown Denver. North winds were sustained to 15 mph on the 11th.
In 1963…snowfall totaled 5.8 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north-northwest winds gusted to 25 mph on the 11th.
In 1993…a strong storm dumped heavy snow in the mountains and 4 to 8 inches of snow over metro Denver. Snowfall totaled 3.6 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 35 mph.
In 1893…northwest winds were sustained to 44 mph.
In 1952…northwest winds sustained at 40 mph with gusts to 60 mph were recorded at Stapleton Airport where 3.2 inches of snow also fell.
In 1954…strong winds raked metro Denver all day producing areas of blowing dust…snow…and blowing snow. At Stapleton Airport…north-northeast winds at sustained speeds of 40 to 45 mph with gusts as high as 60 mph were recorded. Snowfall totaled only 0.4 inches.
In 1982…a windstorm hit the foothills from Boulder north. The highest recorded wind gust of 90 mph occurred in Boulder. Wind gusts to 47 mph were recorded at Stapleton International Airport.
In 1985…only 1.0 inch of snow fell in Denver…but strong winds produced near-blizzard conditions and caused the closure of I-70 from Aurora to Limon for an hour in the evening. North winds gusted to 38 mph at Stapleton International Airport.
In 1999…heavy snow fell in and near the Front Range foothills. Snowfall totals included: 8.5 inches at Genesee…6 inches about 8 miles northwest of Evergreen… 4.5 inches in Boulder…4 inches in Littleton…and only 2.2 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport.
In 2005…a winter storm brought heavy snow to the eastern foothills and western metro Denver overnight. Storm total snowfall included: 15 inches in Jamestown…13 inches near Blackhawk…11 inches in the foothills southwest of Boulder and near Nederland…10.5 inches at Gross Reservoir…9.5 inches at Eldorado Springs…9 inches at Roxborough Park… 8.5 inches near Longmont…8 inches in Boulder…7.5 inches at Centennial…7 inches in Louisville…3.3 inches at Denver Stapleton. At Denver International Airport…west winds gusted to 46 mph on the 12th before the passage of the cold front and north winds gusted 31 mph on the 13th.
In 1880…a protracted cold spell resulted in 8 temperature records being set. Record low temperatures for the date were set when the temperature dipped to 10 degrees below zero on the 13th and 14th…8 degrees below zero on the 12th and 15th…and 4 degrees below zero on the 16th. Daily record low maximum temperatures were set with 11 degrees on the 12th…12 degrees on the 13th…and 19 degrees on the 15th.
In 1973…northwest winds gusted to 51 mph at Stapleton International Airport. The strong winds were accompanied by virga and a very light snow shower.
In 1990…4 to 9 inches of snow fell across metro Denver with 8 to 16 inches in the foothills. Morrison reported 9 inches; Evergreen…11 inches; and Aspen Springs…14 inches from the storm. Blowing snow and reduced visibilities caused 2-hour delays at Stapleton International Airport where only 5.1 inches of snow fell and north winds gusted to 21 mph.
In 1996…a storm system moving across northern Colorado dumped heavy snow in the mountains and foothills and across metro Denver where snowfall ranged from 5 to 10 inches. A foot of new snow was measured at Nederland with 11 inches at Conifer. Snowfall totaled 8.0 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. Northeast winds gusted to 30 mph at Denver International Airport on the 13th.
13-15 in 1906…snowfall totaled 8.0 inches over downtown Denver.
In 1873…a brisk west wind blew a perfect gale during the afternoon and evening.
In 1898…northwest winds were sustained to 52 mph with gusts to 62 mph.
In 1899…west Bora winds were sustained to 50 mph with gusts to 60 mph.
In 1902…west winds were sustained to 40 mph with gusts to 48 mph.
In 1913…strong winds all day behind a cold front made for a blustery cold day as the high temperature climbed to only 25 degrees after a low of 19 degrees. Northeast winds were sustained to 51 mph with gusts as high as 60 mph. Only a trace of snow fell.
In 1920…west winds sustained to 43 mph with gusts to 50 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 67 degrees.
In 1923…heavy snowfall of 8.5 inches fell in downtown Denver. North winds were sustained to 25 mph.
In 1947…heavy snowfall totaled 5.8 inches in downtown Denver. Northeast winds were sustained to 17 mph.
In 1971…a wind gust to 51 mph was recorded at the National Bureau of Standards in Boulder.
In 1989…a strong pacific cold front produced west wind gusts to 59 mph at Stapleton International Airport.
In 2002…heavy snow developed in the foothills of Boulder County with 9 inches measured near Jamestown and 7 inches near Nederland. Snowfall totaled only 2.9 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. East winds gusted to 29 mph at Denver International Airport.
In 1908…a warm spell resulted in daily record high minimum temperatures on 3 consecutive days: 54 degrees on the 14th…52 degrees on the 15th…and 56 degrees on the 16th… Also the all-time record high minimum for the month of March. High temperatures ranged from 65 degrees on the 14th to 72 degrees on the 16th.
In 1983…a heavy wet snowstorm buried metro Denver with the foothills receiving the most. Conifer recorded 34 inches of snow with 4 feet measured at Coal Creek Canyon in the foothills northwest of Denver. The storm left 6 to 10 inches of snow across metro Denver. Boulder received 12 to 18 inches. Flight operations at Stapleton International Airport were limited to one runway for a time. Some roads and schools were closed…and power outages occurred when wet snow downed lines. Snowfall on the 15th and 16th totaled 7.2 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 30 mph. Maximum snow depth on the ground was only 6 inches due to melting.
In 1902…northwest winds were sustained to 54 mph with gusts as high as 60 mph.
In 1920…southwest winds were sustained to 40 mph with gusts to 48 mph. The strong but cold downslope winds warmed the high temperature to only 35 degrees.
In 1935…strong winds howled across Boulder. At Valmont a wind gust to 60 mph was recorded. No damage was reported.
In 2006…strong winds ranging from 60 to 75 mph were reported in and near the foothills of Boulder County. In Longmont… Two trees toppled by the strong winds damaged a car. Winds gusted to 75 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric Research Mesa Laboratory in Boulder. West winds gusted to 52 mph at Denver International Airport.
In 2000…heavy upslope snowfall occurred in and near the Front Range foothills and over the Palmer Divide to the south of metro Denver. Snowfall totals from the storm included: 17 inches at Idaho Springs; 16 inches at Aspen Springs; 12 inches in Boulder; 11 inches at Bailey… Chief Hosa…Coal Creek Canyon…Eldorado Springs…Evergreen… And near Morrison; 10 inches at Intercanyon…Ken Caryl Ranch…and near Nederland; 9 inches near Sedalia and in Wheat Ridge; and 8 inches in Arvada. Snowfall totaled 5.4 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. Northeast winds gusted to 28 mph at Denver International Airport on the 15th.
In 1902…north winds were sustained to 40 mph with gusts to 48 mph.
In 1908…the low temperature dipped to only 56 degrees…the record high minimum for the month.
In 1963…high winds struck metro Denver causing heavy damage. Winds gusted at 90 to 100 mph in Boulder. Wind gusts to 98 mph were recorded at Jefferson County Airport in Broomfield where hangars and several light planes were severely damaged. Wind gusts to 87 mph were recorded southwest of Littleton. A west wind gust to 55 mph was recorded at Stapleton Airport. Trees were uprooted…signs blown down…and utility lines disrupted. Damage totaled nearly 5 thousand dollars in Boulder alone.
In 1987…a storm dropped 3 to 6 inches of snow across metro Denver with higher amounts in the foothills. Most of the snow on the plains melted as it fell. Only 1.9 inches of snow fell at Stapleton International Airport where southeast winds gusted to 30 mph.