Thornton’s weekend starts off with a shot of snow but will then warm up

A bit of a mixed bag of weather for us for the three-day period. Friday will see some light snow but the balance of the weekend will see dry conditions.

For Friday, mostly cloudy to cloudy skies will be above a we head for a high in the low 40s. Some light snow / flurries will be possible during the daytime hours but little / no accumulation is expected. Tonight, chances for snow increase and we could see some light accumulations (1 to 2 inches), mainly between 6:00pm and midnight. Lows tonight will dip to around 20 degrees.

Saturday sees the sun and dry conditions return but it will be cold. Look for mostly sunny skies above with highs topping out in the upper 30s. Saturday night, skies remain mostly clear. Lows will drop to the upper teens.

Sunday sees things continue to improve and it will be the warmest day of the weekend. Highs will be around 50 degrees under mostly sunny skies. There will be some breezy winds. Have a great weekend!

November 2023 weather recap: Thornton gets another mild, dry month

Thornton, Colorado's November 2023 Temperature Summary. (

Thornton, Colorado’s November 2023 Temperature Summary. (

For the second month in the row, Thornton saw a period of temperatures above normal and precipitation below normal. Were it not for a cold snap and snow to end the month, it would have been much worse.

Most of November saw a continuation of the mild, dry weather we saw in October. For the first three weeks, temperatures were largely above normal and precipitation was virtually non-existent. In fact, 19 out of the first 22 days of the month saw mercury readings above normal and a mere 0.02 inches had been recorded in the rain bucket and we had no snow.

Mother Nature finally changed course and chilled us out and brought our first snow of the month during the last week. We saw a few days with well below normal temperatures and 4.3 inches of snowfall were recorded over a two-day period.

Thornton’s average temperature for November 2023 came in at 42.2 degrees. This was well above our 17-year running average for November of 39.7 degrees. Temperatures ranged from a high of 79.8 degrees on the 5th down to a low of 11.7 degrees on the 26th.

Out at DIA where the Mile High City’s official measurements are taken, it was similarly warm. Denver had an overage temperature for the month of 43.2 degrees, again, well above their average of 39.4 degrees.

In terms of precipitation, Thornton saw a mere 0.20 inches of liquid precipitation during the month. This was less than half of the 0.47 inches running November average and tied for the third driest November of the past 17 years.

Denver recorded 0.18 inches out at the airport. Far below their long term November average of 0.64 inches.

Snow was below normal both here in Thornton and at DIA. Thornton recorded 4.3 inches, a good bit below the 5.7 inch November average of the past 17 years. Denver saw less than us with 2.9 inches, far below their long term November average of 7.3 inches.

Click here to view Thornton’s complete November 2023 climate summary report.

Thornton, Colorado's November 2023 Precipitation Summary. (

Thornton, Colorado’s November 2023 Precipitation Summary. (

December 3 to December 9: This week in Denver weather history

This Week in Denver Weather History

Wind and big time snowstorms can visit the Mile High City this time of year and we see many such events in our look back at this week in Denver weather history. Probably most notable, the Blizzard of 1913, the Mile High City’s biggest snowstorm in history.

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From the National Weather Service:


In 1913…the 1st marked the start of the heaviest 5-day total snowfall in the city’s history. During this period snowfall totaled 45.7 inches. Starting on the 1st…snow fell intermittently for 3 days and accumulated a little over 8 inches. On the 4th and 5th…an additional 37.4 inches of snow fell. At Georgetown in the foothills west of Denver even more snow fell…86 inches over the 5 days with the most…63 inches…on the 4th. In Colorado…snowfall was heavy along the eastern slopes of the mountains from the Palmer Divide north. High winds during the storm caused heavy drifting…which blocked all transportation. Snow cover of an inch or more from the storm persisted for 60 consecutive days from the 1st through January 29…1914. Additional snowfall in December and January prolonged the number of days. This is the third longest period of snow cover on record in the city.


In 1955…snowfall totaled only 2.9 inches at Stapleton Airport. This was the only measurable snowfall of the month.

In 1973…post-frontal heavy snowfall totaled 7.6 inches at Stapleton International Airport where northeast winds gusting to 37 mph caused some blowing snow.

In 1990…strong downslope winds raked the eastern foothills and most of metro Denver. A wind gust to 87 mph was recorded at Rollinsville with wind gusts to 58 mph in Arvada and 55 mph in Lakewood. West winds gusted to 48 mph at Stapleton International Airport on the 2nd.

In 1997…heavy snow fell in the foothills. Conifer received 10 inches of new snow. Snowfall totaled only 2.4 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport on the 1st…2nd…and 3rd. North winds gusted to 24 mph at Denver International Airport on the 2nd.


In 1909…post-frontal snowfall totaled 6.1 inches in downtown Denver. Most of the snow…5.9 inches…fell between 6:00 pm on the 2nd and 6:00 pm on the 3rd. North winds were sustained to 18 mph on both the 2nd and 3rd.


In 1939…more than 2 weeks of unseasonably warm weather made the month the 3rd warmest on record. Seven daily temperature records were set…including the all time record high temperature for the month of 79 degrees on the 5th. Daytime highs were balmy with 14 days in the 60’s and 70’s. Low temperatures dipped to freezing or below on only 5 days. The period was dry with only a trace of snow on the 12th.


In 1977…high winds continued in Boulder and were clocked from 74 to 90 mph…causing only minor damage. Northwest winds gusted to 33 mph at Stapleton International Airport where the strong Chinook winds warmed the temperature to a high of 63 degrees.

In 1985…wind gusts to 78 mph were clocked at Table Mesa in Boulder. Winds gusted to 70 mph at Echo Lake west of Denver.

In 2011…Another round of snow developed in and near the Front Range Foothills. The heaviest snowfall occurred in the foothills of Boulder and northern Jefferson Counties. Storm totals included: 13 inches…7 miles southwest of Boulder; 10.5 inches…4 miles east-northeast of Nederland; 10 inches at Genesee; 9.5 inches…4 miles west-northwest of Boulder; 9 inches at Gross Reservoir and 4 miles east of Pinecliffe. Around the Urban Corridor…storm totals ranged from 3 to 8 inches…heaviest in and around Boulder.


In 1968…strong Chinook winds in Boulder gusting to 52 mph downtown caused 7 thousand dollars in damage. Flying debris damaged cars…houses…and other property in Boulder. West winds gusted to 49 mph late on the 3rd and to 45 mph on the 4th at Stapleton International Airport where the temperature climbed to a high of 60 degrees on the 4th.

In 1970…strong winds whistled through Boulder. Sustained winds of 40 mph with gusts to 70 mph were recorded at the National Bureau of Standards in Boulder. Wind gusts to 50 mph occurred in downtown Denver. No damage was reported. On the 3rd…northwest winds gusted to 40 mph at Stapleton International Airport where the Chinook winds warmed the temperature to a high of 66 degrees on the 4th.

In 1999…heavy snow fell over the foothills and metro Denver. The heaviest snowfall occurred in the foothills south of I-70 and near the Palmer Divide. Snowfall totals included: 25 inches near Tiny Town; 18 inches at Conifer; 15 inches near Evergreen; 14 inches at Chief Hosa…8 miles west of Castle Rock…and near Blackhawk; 12 inches at Pine Junction and 8 miles south of Sedalia; 11 inches atop Floyd Hill and in Roxborough; and 10 inches at Castle Rock. Around metro Denver…snowfall totals included: 10 inches at Highlands Ranch…9 inches at Parker…and 8 inches in Aurora and Wheat Ridge. Elsewhere around the metro area…snowfall generally ranged from 3 to 5 inches. Only 3.2 inches of snow fell at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North winds gusted to 32 mph at Denver International Airport on the 3rd.

In 2007…high winds developed in and near the Front Range foothills. Peak wind reports included: 88 mph atop Niwot Ridge; 87 mph atop mines peak; 80 mph…3 miles southeast of Jamestown; 78 mph at Longmont; 74 mph at Table Mesa. A few power outages occurred in Longmont as broken branches downed power lines. Northwest winds gusted to 38 mph at Denver International Airport on the 4th.

In 2013…a storm system brought heavy snow to parts of the Front Range Foothills. Storm totals included: 12 inches…7 miles west-southwest of Evergreen; 10.5 inches…3 miles north of Bailey; 9.5 inches…3 miles west of Jamestown and 5 miles northeast of Ward; 9 inches in Bailey…8.5 inches… 3 miles north of Conifer. Continue reading

110 years ago: Looking back at the Great Colorado Snowstorm of 1913

A man on skis navigates the monstrous December 1913 snowstorm in Denver. (Denver Public Library Special Collections)

A man on skis navigates the monstrous December 1913 snowstorm in Denver. (Denver Public Library Special Collections)

Significant snow events in Colorado are not unusual however some are nothing short of epic. Such was the case with the Great Colorado Snowstorm of 1913, a storm that occurred 110 years ago today and still stands as the largest snow event in Denver history.

It was a classic setup. Low pressure to Colorado’s southwest slowly moved to the northeast drawing in moist air – and dropping snow along the Front Range.

The first three days of the storm were relatively calm with Denver only seeing 8 inches. On the 4th and 5th however Mother Nature let loose with 37.4 inches of snow.

The total for the event, 45.7 inches, was and still is the heaviest single snowfall event in Denver history. To the west, Georgetown recorded an even more amazing 86 inches, 63 of which fell on the 4th of the month alone.

The Denver Post headline on December 5, 1913 read, “Denver in Mantle of Shimmering White, Stops Activity and Everybody Jollifies.”

A subheading said, “All Denver is Waking Amid Ghostly Silence of Streets That Are Buried – Whole State Fells Storm of Varying Intensity.”

The Post’s now defunct competitor, the Rocky Mountain News, saw a silver lining. Its headline read, “Colorado Gripped by Worst Snowstorm Recorded in 28 Years; Denver is Hit Hard, but Blizzard Means Millions in Crops.”

Indeed, in a day long before four wheel drive existed and when horse and carriage were as common as cars, the storm had a tremendous impact.

Travel was brought to a complete halt in the area as snow drifts blocked all roads. Trolleys were unable to run downtown and railroads in and out of the city were stopped. It would be a week before streetcar service was returned to normal.

Stranded workers were housed at the city auditorium, jail and movie theatres. Telegraph, telephone and electrical service were interrupted as the snow downed lines across the area. Schools were closed at the height of the storm and some remained shuttered for days.

Any open space in the city became a snow dumping ground as the city dug out. The Rocky Mountain News reported that anyone needing work could help the Tramway company with snow removal. Pay was $3.50 per day.

Despite the ferocity of the storm, accounts of the day indicate only a few fatalities. Dozens of buildings did collapse under the sheer weight of the snow.

The Great Colorado Snowstorm coupled with smaller events over the rest of the month yielded a snowfall total for December 1913 of 57.4 inches, the snowiest month ever recorded in Denver. Additionally, 5.21 inches of precipitation was recorded making the month the wettest December on record.

Mild temperatures continue Thursday but we also get some wind

Another mild day for Thornton today, albeit a bit cooler than yesterday. Unfortunately, we will also be getting a good dose of wind.

We may have a cloud or two early but those will soon be gone and sunny skies will dominate the day. High temperatures will be topping out in the mid-60s. As for those winds, initially they wont be too bad but will be ramping up by mid to late morning, then continue through the afternoon.

Tonight, clouds will be increasing and lows will dip to the upper 20s. Pre-dawn hours tomorrow may see a bit of rain / snow.


Wednesday in Thornton brings temps well above normal, pleasant conditions

Can you get spring fever in December? You might with today’s temperatures! A strong ridge is going to offer up temperatures 20+ degrees above normal today.

Sunny skies will be above throughout the daytime hours. Overall, conditions are going to be calm and dry. High temperatures will be topping out near the 70 degree mark, maybe even topping it. The average high for today’s date is 45 degrees so this is definitely out of the ordinary.

Tonight, it will be mostly clear and lows will dip to around the freezing mark.

Enjoy! Keep an eye on those temps here.

Thornton’s December 2023 preview: Winter arrives, typically with cold and snow

Thornton, Colorado's December Weather Preview

Recent months have, overall, been warmer and drier than normal.  Last month initially brought more of the same but then took a turn toward colder temps and offered up some much-needed snow.  What will December hold for us?

The month of December brings with it the official start of winter and oftentimes, colder and snowier weather conditions. It, however, can also offer unseasonably warm temperatures and bone dry conditions.  Given our recent mild and dry weather, we are certainly hoping for a change in the coming month.

Overall December’s monthly mean temperature of 31.2 degrees (1991 – 2020 averages) makes it our coldest month.  Snow is always on everyone’s mind this time of year but December is only our 3rd snowiest month behind March and November with an average of 8.0 inches of the white stuff.

Get all the details on Thornton’s December weather including a look back at historical events and a look at the long range forecast in our December weather preview here.

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Tuesday offers up mild temperatures, lots of sun, less wind for Thornton

A nice looking early winter day ahead for us with no drama. Look for lots of sun, mild temps and, best of all, the wind eases.

Sunny skies start us off and will be with us all day. Overall, conditions will be calm and dry. High temperatures will top out near the 60-degree mark.

Tonight, we remain calm with mostly clear skies. Lows will dip to around 30 degrees.

Mild temperatures, breezy winds start off Thornton’s workweek

Not too bad of a way to start a week of work. We will enjoy temps a good ways above normal and lots of sun but there will be some wind.

Mostly sunny skies will be above throughout the daytime hours. High temperatures will be climbing to the mid-50s. Winds will be picking up the pace this morning and be breezy for most of the day.

Tonight, winds will ease and skies will be mostly clear. Lows will dip to the mid to upper 20s.

Thornton’s weekend weather to offer up unsettled, chilly conditions

A series of fronts move through this weekend offering up some sun, some wind and possibly some snow. None of the features, however, will be particularly dramatic.

For today, mostly cloudy skies will be above and we will see highs only in the upper 30s. The late afternoon and evening offer up just a slight chance for some snow showers / flurries. Little to no accumulation is expected. Overnight lows will be around 20 degrees.

Saturday warms up a bit with highs in the low to mid-40s. Partly sunny skies will be above. Breezy winds arrive mid-morning and will last throughout the day into the overnight hours. Saturday night, lows will dip to the mid-20s under partly to mostly cloudy skies. Winds will continue to be breezy.

Sunday morning brings another chance for some snow. Again though, little to no accumulation is expected. Most of the day will be partly cloudy with breezy winds. Highs will be in the mid to upper 40s. Have a great weekend! More: