November 6 to November 12: This Week in Denver Weather History

This Week in Denver Weather History

Our look back at this week in Denver weather history is dominated with two types of events: snow and wind. November is our second snowiest month and we see many significant snowfall events in the past. Wind is a fact of life on the plains and in Denver and damaging events have occurred with relatively frequency as we can see below.

From the National Weather Service:

5-6

In 1938…heavy snowfall totaled 7.5 inches over downtown Denver. North winds were sustained to 16 mph with gusts to 19 mph on the 5th.

5-7

In 1918…rain was mixed with and changed to snow…which became heavy and totaled 8.1 inches in downtown Denver. North winds were sustained to 21 mph with gusts to 23 mph.

6

In 1962…west winds gusted to 55 mph…briefly reducing the visibility to 1 1/2 miles in blowing dust at Stapleton Airport. The strong winds blew all day.

In 1989…high winds to 62 mph were recorded in Boulder. Northwest winds gusted to 33 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1991…strong westerly Chinook winds blew into metro Denver with gusts to 88 mph recorded at Rollinsville and to 51 mph in Boulder. Later…northeast winds with gusts of 30 to 40 mph were common across all of metro Denver behind a cold front…which produced only 0.2 inch of snowfall at Stapleton International Airport.

7

In 1958…a strong cold front produced northeast wind gusts to 52 mph at Stapleton Airport where some blowing dust was observed.

In 1980…Chinook winds at sustained speeds of 40 mph were recorded with a peak gust to 71 mph measured at Wondervu southwest of Boulder. West winds gusted to 25 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1989…strong winds buffeted many foothills areas. Wind gusts of 60 to 70 mph were recorded in Boulder and Longmont. Northwest winds gusted to 43 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1996…wind gusts to 75 mph were recorded at Golden Gate Canyon and at the Rocky Flats Environmental Test Facility northwest of Denver. Northwest winds gusted to 40 mph at Denver International Airport.

In 1998…upslope conditions…coupled with a moist and unstable air mass…allowed heavy snow to develop in the foothills west of Denver. Snowfall generally ranged from 4 to 6 inches…but 7 inches were measured 4 miles south of Evergreen. Only 1.2 inches of snow fell at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. This was the first measurable snow of the season.

7-8

In 1969…wind gusts to 48 mph in downtown Boulder caused minor damage.

8

In 1896…southwest Chinook winds sustained to 42 mph with gusts as high as 46 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 53 degrees.

In 1977 near-blizzard conditions in blowing snow caused the closure of I-70 to the west of Denver in clear creek canyon and east of Denver to Limon. Northeast wind gusts to 46 mph were recorded at Stapleton International Airport where snowfall totaled only 1.1 inches.

In 1984…a rare November thunderstorm produced west winds gusting to 31 mph…but only 0.04 inch of rain at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1996…high winds gusting from 80 to 100 mph were recorded at Wondervu in the foothills southwest of Boulder. West northwest winds gusted to 32 mph at Denver International Airport.

In 2006…the temperature in Denver climbed to a high of 80 degrees. This was the first time the temperature had ever exceeded the 70’s in November since records began in 1872. This new all-time record maximum temperature for the month of November was also a new daily record and the highest temperature ever recorded so late in the season.

In 2020…a peak wind gust to 63 mph was observed at Centennial Airport from the southwest. At Denver International Airport…a peak gust to 53 mph was observed.

8-9

In 1897…west winds were sustained to 45 mph with gusts as high as 50 mph in the city.

In 1919…post-frontal heavy snowfall totaled 8.4 inches over downtown Denver. Most of the snow…6.6 inches…fell on the 9th. North winds were sustained to 26 mph with gusts to 30 mph on the 8th.

In 1950…a major winter storm dumped 10.4 inches of snow at Stapleton Airport with the most snow…7.8 inches…falling on the 8th. East winds gusted to 31 mph at Stapleton Airport on the 8th. Snowfall totaled 8.2 inches in downtown Denver.

In 1958…strong winds caused some damage in Boulder. West- northwest winds gusted to 40 mph at Stapleton Airport on the 8th.

In 1975…heavy snowfall hit metro Denver. Snowfall at Stapleton International Airport totaled 8.0 inches and east winds gusted to 21 mph. Power outages caused by the storm affected over 10 thousand people in metro Denver.

In the foothills west of Denver…10 to 15 inches of snow fell. The storm produced the greatest 24-hour precipitation…1.29 inches…ever recorded during the month of November in the city.

In 1983…metro Denver received 4 to 8 inches of snow with the heaviest amounts near the foothills. It was the first measurable snow of the season in Denver. Only 1.8 inches of snow fell at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 20 mph.

In 1989…strong winds hit the Front Range. On the 9th…the wooden frame of a house under construction in Boulder was blown down. The previous evening a power outage blackened Nederland. Wind gusts to 95 mph were recorded 4 miles south of Rollinsville with 97 mph on Fritz Peak near that town. At Stapleton International Airport…northwest winds gusted to 45 mph on the 8th and to 38 mph on the 9th.

In 1998…another upslope snow event developed in the Front Range foothills. The heaviest snowfall occurred in west central Jefferson County where 14 inches were measured 8 miles west of Conifer. Other snowfall totals included: 10 inches at Evergreen and 9 miles northwest of Bergen Park; 9 inches at Genesee…Nederland…and near the Chief Hosa exit on I-70; and 8 inches in Coal Creek Canyon. On the 9th…snowfall was 2.6 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North-northeast winds gusted to 30 mph at Denver International Airport on the 9th.

8-10

In 1985…Indian summer came to an abrupt end when a winter storm dumped 10 to 18 inches of snow in the Front Range foothills and 6 to 10 inches across metro Denver…snarling traffic and causing flight delays of up to 3 hours at Stapleton International Airport. The temperature plunged from a high of 66 degrees on the 8th to a low of only 13 degrees on the 9th…after the passage of a vigorous cold front with northeast winds gusting to 32 mph. The temperature climbed to only 19 degrees on the 10th…setting a record low maximum for the date. Snowfall totaled 7.3 inches at Stapleton International Airport with most of the snow…7.1 inches…falling on the 9th.

9

In 1939…a trace of snow fell over downtown Denver. This snow…along with a trace of snow on the 2nd…was the only snow of the month…ranking it…along with other months…the second least snowiest November on record. Precipitation of 0.01 inch was the only precipitation of the month…making this the second driest November on record.

In 1944…the first killing frost of the season occurred in the city when the low temperature dipped to 35 degrees. This is the latest date for a killing frost ever recorded in Denver.

In 1946…heavy snowfall totaled 7.7 inches over downtown Denver. This was the second heavy snowfall in less than a week. Northwest winds were sustained to 26 mph.

In 1995…strong downslope winds gusted between 50 and 57 mph at Erie and Boulder. West wind gusts to 44 mph were recorded at Denver International Airport.

In 2014…a record high min of 45 degrees… broke the previous record of 43 degrees set in 1934…and preceded several days of record cold temperatures from the 11th through the 13th.

10

In 1897…west Chinook winds sustained to 51 mph with gusts to 60 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 64 degrees.

In 1915…southwest winds were sustained to 41 mph with gusts as high as 44 mph.

In 1955…strong winds raked the eastern foothills. A wind gust to 80 mph was recorded atop Rocky Flats south of Boulder where some damage occurred.

In 1995…snowfall totaled 6 to 9 inches in the foothills west of Denver…while only 2.2 inches of snow fell at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North-northeast winds gusted to 31 mph at Denver International Airport.

In 1998…strong Bora winds gusting from 70 to 92 mph coupled with blowing snow created whiteout and slick black ice conditions at the base of the foothills west of Denver. State Highway 93 between Golden and Boulder and c-470… Near the Morrison interchange were closed for several hours due to multiple car accidents. Dozens of motorists were stranded until weather conditions improved. A small motor home was a total loss when it caught fire after being blown on its side by strong crosswinds. A man was injured when he was blown off a vehicle while attempting to rescue the occupants. Wind gusts included: 92 mph atop Blue Mountain near Coal Creek Canyon…83 mph atop Fritz Peak near Rollinsville…and 77 mph at Jefferson County Airport near Broomfield. West winds gusted to 36 mph at Denver International Airport.

In 2000…freezing drizzle was widespread across northeastern Colorado with the heaviest amounts near the foothills in the evening. The freezing drizzle made many highways icy and slick…which contributed to a number of traffic accidents. Some highways across metro Denver were closed at times…including portions of State Highway 119 between Boulder and Longmont and U.S. 36 between Westminster and Boulder. State Highway 93 between Boulder and Golden atop Rocky Flats became nearly impassable due to a coating of ice by late evening.

10-11

In 1911…a strong cold front produced snow and a cold wave. The temperature dropped 68 degrees from a high of 66 degrees at 12:40 pm on the 10th to a low of 2 degrees below zero at 7:15 am on the 11th. The low temperature of 23 degrees at midnight on the 10th was also the high temperature on the 11th. Northeast winds were sustained to 42 mph with gusts to 51 mph. Snowfall was only 2.5 inches.

In 1982…up to 4 inches of snow fell over the higher terrain between Denver and Colorado springs. Winds gusted to 50 mph along the foothills. Rainfall totaled 0.27 inch with only 0.1 inch of snow on the 11th at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 39 mph. Dense fog with visibilities as low as zero persisted all day on the 10th. Continue reading November 6 to November 12: This Week in Denver Weather History

Total lunar eclipse to turn the moon red on Election Day 2022

November 8. 2022 Total Lunar Eclipse Time and Phases. (NASA)
November 8. 2022 Total Lunar Eclipse Time and Phases. (NASA)

The second blood moon of the year and the last for us until 2025 is set to be the highlight in the sky early in the morning on Tuesday, November 8th.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the Sun, Earth and Moon all align in a way that the moon is in the Earth’s shadow. Tonight’s total eclipse will see the moon in the darkest part of the shadow and will turn the moon red, hence the name “blood moon.”

The eclipse starts at 1:55am MST and will be done at 6:06am MST. Totality begins at 3:17am and ends at 4:42am. Maximum eclipse will be at 3:59am.

You don’t need anything special to see the event as it will be easily visible with the naked eye. Binoculars though will provide a closer look.

The one hiccup we might have here in Thornton in being able to view the show is cloud cover. Overnight tonight moisture is expected to increase leading to partly to mostly cloudy skies. Hopefully, however, there will be some breaks in the coverage allowing a view. You can check the latest hour-by-hour sky cover forecast here.

This will be the last total lunar eclipse visible for us until March 14, 2025 so if you can get out of bed to see it and Mother Nature cooperates, it is well worth it.

For more about the eclipse see:

Time to “fall back” as Daylight Saving Time ends Sunday, November 6

The United States returns to Standard Time at 2:00am Sunday as Daylight Saving Time comes to an end.
The United States returns to Standard Time at 2:00am Sunday as Daylight Saving Time comes to an end.

The biannual ritual of changing our clocks to adjust for Daylight Saving Time occurs this weekend, providing yet another signal of the changing of seasons.  The United States will ‘fall back’ one hour at 2:00am Sunday morning as we return to Standard Time.

The ritual of changing our clocks twice a year can be met with some resistance as some people struggle to adjust their body’s internal clock.  Others actually like the return to standard time as they get to enjoy an extra hour of sleep.

The time change definitely has big effects on the dawning of daylight and how early it gets dark in the evening.

Sunrise on Saturday occurs at 7:33am but on Sunday it will be at 6:34am. Similarly, sunset will occur at 5:53pm on Saturday but on Sunday the sun will disappear over the horizon at 4:52pm.

For many this means that when they get home from work it will now be dark and outdoor activities will be significantly curtailed as a result.

Arizona and Hawaii are the only states that do not observe Daylight Saving Time and remain on Standard Time year round.    The U.S. territories of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and the United States Virgin Islands also do not observe the event.

It won’t be all that long though before Daylight Saving Time returns.  On March 12, 2023 we will ‘spring forward.’

Daylight Saving Time Schedule

The mandated beginning and end of Daylight Saving Time has changed in the United States over the years.

The most recent schedule was set by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and took effect in 2007.  We now ‘spring forward’ to begin Daylight Saving Time on the second Sunday in March and ‘fall back’ with the return to Standard Time on the first Sunday in November.

Daylight Savings Time Dates

Year DST Begins 2 a.m.
(Second Sunday in March)
DST Ends 2 a.m.
(First Sunday in November)
2022 13 March 2022 6 November 2022
2023 12 March 2023 5 November 2023
2024 10 March 2024 3 November 2024
2025 9 March 2025 2 November 2025
2026 8 March 2026 1 November 2026
2027 14 March 2027 7 November 2027
2028 12 March 2028 5 November 2028
2029 11 March 2029 4 November 2029

November 2022 preview: The transition to winter begins

Thornton's November weather previewThe weather during the month of November in Denver metro area can offer just about anything.  While it is normally a quiet month, it can be prone to extremes.

November has historically been one of Denver’s snowiest months and major snowstorms are not entirely uncommon.  However conditions can also be quite dry.

Temperatures during the month continue to cool as we get closer to winter and by the end of the month the low temperatures routinely dip to 20 degrees or below.  At times it can in fact bring conditions more like what we see in January.

Get all the details on November’s weather and what we can expect in our complete preview here.

October 2022 weather recap: Mild temps, not much precipitation

Thornton, Colorado October 2022 Temperature Summary. (ThorntonWeather.com)
Thornton, Colorado October 2022 Temperature Summary. (ThorntonWeather.com)

October 2022 goes into the books as one that saw Thornton experience above normal mercury readings and below normal precipitation. However, those were also a formula for a great number of pleasant, fall days.

Overall, Thornton’s average temperature for the month came in at an even 52.0 degrees. As measured at Denver International Airport, the Mile High City’s average temperature for the month was a good bit warmer coming in at 53.8 degrees.

Both readings were above Denver’s long term October average of 51.1 degrees and Thornton’s running 16-year average of 49.5 degrees.

Thornton saw a maximum temperature of 81.2 degrees occurring on the 20th and our coldest reading of 27.2 degrees occurred on the 29th. Denver maxed out at 79 degrees on the 20th as well and bottomed out 30 degrees on the 28th.

Precipitation was fleeting during the month and we were quite dry until the final week. Thornton totaled 0.43 inches in the bucket. Denver had a little bit more at 0.46 inches.

Both location’s totals were far below average. Denver’s long-term average for October is 0.99 inches while Thornton’s 16 year running average is at 1.04 inches.

While we did see some snowflakes mixed in with rain on the 27th of the month, it did not accumulate so we are still waiting for that first official snowfall.

Click here to view Thornton’s complete October 2022 climate summary report.

Thornton, Colorado October 2022 Precipitation Summary. (ThorntonWeather.com)
Thornton, Colorado October 2022 Precipitation Summary. (ThorntonWeather.com)

October 30 to November 5: This Week in Denver Weather History

This Week in Denver Weather History

The further we go into the cold season, the more we see significant winter-like events in our look back at Denver weather history. Many significant snowstorms have occurred this week in the past including one in 1946 that dumped more than 30 inches of snow on Denver.

From the National Weather Service:

28-30

In 1971…a vigorous cold front plunged temperatures from a high of 70 degrees on the 27th to record low levels on the 29th and 30th. Snowfall totaled 3.1 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 23 mph. Some freezing drizzle also fell on the 28th. Record daily low maximum temperatures of 32 degrees on the 28th and 25 degrees on the 29th were established along with a daily record minimum of 13 degrees on the 30th.

28-31

In 1929…rain changed to snow on the afternoon of the 28th and continued until midday on the 30th followed by intermittent light snow which continued through the 31st. Snowfall over the four days totaled 16.2 inches in the city. Most of the snow…8.5 inches…fell on the 29th with 6.1 inches on the 30th. Temperatures hovered in 20’s during most of the storm.

29-30

In 1905…heavy snowfall developed on the evening of the 29th and continued through the evening of the 30th. Snowfall totaled 11.0 inches in downtown Denver. Precipitation was 1.02 inches. Temperatures were generally in the 20’s.

In 1959…rain during most of the day on the 28th changed to snow early on the 29th and continued through most of the 30th. Heavy snowfall totaled 7.4 inches at Stapleton Airport. North-northeast winds gusted to 24 mph on the 30th. Some freezing drizzle also occurred on the 30th.

In 1981…4 to 8 inches of new snow were recorded in the foothills west of Denver. Snowfall totaled only 0.4 inch at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 25 mph.

In 2019…a strong storm system brought record breaking temperatures and up to a foot of new snow to parts of Denver…especially across the south and southeast portions of the metro area down to the Palmer Divide. In Denver… a record low maximum temperatures of 18 was set on the 29th… followed by a record low temperatures of 3 degrees on the 30th. The combination of snow and wind along the Interstate 70 corridor east of Denver forced its closure in both directions for several hours due to drifting snow and poor visibility. One weather related traffic fatality…occurred in the foothills west of Denver which closed State Highway 6. The official snowfall measurement at Denver International Airport was 7.7 inches. Numerous schools in and around the Denver area and to the east were closed due to heavy snow and hazardous road conditions. Cancellations and delayed flights at Denver International Airport left 800 passengers stranded at the airport overnight. Along the urban corridor and Palmer Divide storm totals included: Storm totals included: 12 inches at Ponderosa Park…10 inches near Foxfield; and Parker; 8.5 inches in southwest Aurora; near Buckley AFB…Cherry Creek…east Denver…and southwest Aurora; 8 inches in Boulder and near Elizabeth…Federal Heights…Louisville and Westminster; 7.5 inches near Castle Pines…7 inches in southwest Aurora and near Shamballa and Quincy Reservoir; 6.5 inches near Rocky Flats; 6 inches near Byers…Elbert…Greenwood and Lakewood.

29-31

In 1889…the first snowfall of the season totaled 14.0 inches over the three days in downtown Denver. Snowfall was 8.0 inches on the 29th and 5.0 inches on the 31st. North to northeast winds gusted to 30 mph on the 29th.

In 1950…a warm spell resulted in five daily temperature records. Record highs of 84…80…and 79 degrees occurred on the 29th…30th…and 31st…respectively. Low temperature of 49 degrees on the 30th was the record high minimum for the date.

In 1991…the second surge of cold arctic air in a matter of days plunged metro Denver into the deep freeze. While low temperatures remained above zero…high temperatures were only in the 20’s. Three temperature records were set: record lows of 7 degrees on the 30th and 10 degrees on the 31st and a record low maximum of only 21 degrees on the 30th. Snowfall was light with only 1.9 inches recorded at Stapleton International Airport where east winds gusted to 23 mph.

In 2002…snowfall totaled 4.3 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North winds gusted to 32 mph on the 29th behind a cold front…which plunged temperatures well below seasonal normals. High temperatures of 18 degrees on the 30th and 19 degrees on the 31st were record low maximums for each date. Low temperatures dipped to 12 degrees on the 30th and 15 degrees on the 31st.

29-1

In 1972…heavy snowfall totaled 15.5 inches at Stapleton International Airport. However…the heaviest snow occurred on Halloween night when 7 inches fell on trick-or-treaters during a short 3-hour period. I-25 was closed south of Denver. North winds gusting to 29 mph caused some blowing snow on the 1st. The snow started late on the 29th and ended during the mid afternoon on the 1st. The greatest snow depth on the ground at Stapleton International Airport was 13 inches on the 1st.

30

In 1974…a rare thunderstorm for so late in October produced hail to 3/8 inch in diameter and 0.10 inch of rain at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1991…the high temperature warmed to only 21 degrees…the all-time record low maximum for the month of October. The same temperature also occurred on October 25…1997.

30-31

In 2018…a storm system brought a brief period of moderate to heavy snowfall to the Front Range mountains…foothills… and Palmer Divide. Storm totals included: 11 inches near Allenspark; 7.5 inches…6 miles northwest of Lyons; 7 inches at Bear Lake; 6.5 inches near Bailey; 6 inches near Aspen Springs…Copeland Lake…Franktown…Lake Eldora and Larkspur; with 5 inches near Elizabeth. A trace of snowfall was observed at Denver International Airport.

31

In 1997…high winds buffeted the foothills and adjacent areas of metro Denver. West winds gusted to 70 mph in Broomfield and to 40 mph at Denver International Airport. The strongest winds occurred in the mountains west of Denver and in the foothills north of Denver.

In 2001…high winds developed in the foothills. Peak wind gusts were measured to 74 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric Research on the mesa in Boulder and to 72 mph near Rollinsville. West winds gusting as high as 53 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 71 degrees at Denver International Airport.

In 2020…extreme drought conditions continued in October. The first half of the month remained unseasonably warm… dry and windy. These conditions allowed the fires to the west and northwest of Denver to explode and double in size. The Cameron Peak wildfire become the largest in the state`s history. The Calwood wildfire in Boulder County started near Jamestown…and consumed 8788 acres within a 24-hr period on the 17th. It consumed a total of 10105 acres by the end of the month. The Calwood wildfire also became the largest wildfire in Boulder County history. The fire damaged or destroyed a total of 26 homes with preliminary damage estimates of nearly 37 million dollars. Extremely poor air quality continued to plague Denver and the entire Front Range. Continue reading October 30 to November 5: This Week in Denver Weather History

October 2022 top shots: Monthly photo slideshow

A trail of golden aspen in the Colorado high country. (Patrick Martin Photography)
A trail of golden aspen in the Colorado high country. (Patrick Martin Photography)

October in Thornton can bring a wide variety of weather conditions, perfect for the photographer in all of us.

The month brings the changing of the colors at Colorado’s lower elevations and it is also is typically when we see our first freeze and first snow.

Couple those facts with our usual widely varying landscapes and wildlife and we have a month that is sure to bring in plenty of photo opportunities.

  • Slideshow updated October 28, 2022
  • 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.

[flickr_set id=”72177720302849011″]

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!

October 23 to October 29: This Week in Denver Weather History

This Week in Denver Weather History

It’s not quite Halloween but leading up to the holiday we see plenty of  ‘scary’ weather in our look back at this week in Denver weather history. High winds are relatively commonplace and so too are major snowstorms. One recent event in 1997 dumped 14 to 31 inches of the white stuff on the metro area.

From the National Weather Service:

18-23

In 2003…an extended warm spell resulted in 5 new temperature records. The high temperature of 84 degrees on the 18th equaled the record high for the date. High temperatures of 86 degrees on the 19th…83 degrees on the 21st…and 84 degrees on the 22nd were record highs for the dates. Low temperature of 49 degrees on the 23rd was a record high minimum for the date. Low temperatures during the period were in the 40’s and lower 50’s.

19-23

In 1906…heavy snowfall totaled 22.7 inches in the city over the 5 days. Rain changed to snow on the evening of the 19th…and snow continued through the late afternoon of the 23rd. The heaviest amount of snowfall…16.0 inches…fell from 8:00 pm on the 20th to 8:00 pm on the 22nd. The most snow on the ground was 13.3 inches on the evening of the 23rd. This was the first snow of the season and the only snow of the month. Winds during the storm were from the north at sustained speeds of 20 to 30 mph each day. Temperatures during the storm were generally in the 20’s.

22-23

In 1914…post-frontal rain changed to snow. Precipitation totaled 2.72 inches…most of which was in the form of moist snow which melted as it fell in the business section of the city. About 3 inches of snow was measured on lawns in the residential areas on the morning of the 24th. Official snowfall totaled only 0.4 inch downtown… But an estimated 8.0 inches of snow melted as it fell. North to northeast winds were sustained to 29 mph with gusts to 30 mph on both days.

In 1975…a vigorous cold front moving across metro Denver followed by strong northeast winds gusting to 52 mph produced billows of blowing dust and plunged the temperature 21 degrees in an hour. The surface visibility was reduced to 1/4 mile in blowing dust at Stapleton International Airport. The temperature cooled from a daily record high of 81 degrees to a low of 38 degrees by day’s end. The first snowfall of the season totaled 2.7 inches on the 23rd. This was the only measurable snow of the month at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1995…heavy snow fell on the Palmer Ridge south of Denver and in the foothills west of Denver where snow amounts ranged from 4 to 8 inches. Sedalia…south of Denver… Received 8 inches of snow. Winds strengthened on the plains and produced blizzard conditions…reducing surface visibilities to less than 1/4 mile. I-70 was closed from just east of Denver at Gun Club Road to the Kansas border. Ten inches of snow fell at Strasburg east of Denver where north winds at sustained speeds of 35 to 45 mph with gusts as high as 60 mph produced 2 to 4 foot drifts. Snowfall totaled only 2.2 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North winds gusted to 51 mph at Denver International Airport.

23

In 1876…skies were fair…but winds were sustained to 48 mph.

In 1942…a major storm dumped 10.2 inches of snow over downtown Denver. Post-frontal northeast winds were sustained to only 13 mph.

In 1955…the first snowfall of the season and the only measurable snow of the month dumped 4.1 inches of snow on Stapleton Airport. This was the single heaviest October snowfall in 13 years since 1942. The storm also brought the first sub-freezing temperatures of the season when the temperature dipped to a low of 25 degrees.

In 1956…southwest winds gusted to 53 mph and produced some blowing dust at Stapleton Airport.

In 1967…a northwest wind gust to 51 mph was recorded at Stapleton International Airport. In downtown Boulder… Winds were sustained at 20 mph with gusts in excess of 40 mph.

In 1981…strong winds occurred in the foothills. Wind gusts to 70 mph were reported at Wondervu.

23-24

In 1887…the first measurable snowfall of the season totaled 3.1 inches. North winds to 20 mph were recorded on the 23rd. This was the only measurable snow of the month.

In 1932…post-frontal snowfall from the late evening of the 23rd continued through the late afternoon of the 24th and totaled 6.2 inches. Southeast winds were sustained to 25 mph with gusts to 26 mph on the 23rd. Temperatures cooled from a high of 68 degrees on the 23rd to a low of 25 degrees on the 24th…the coldest reading of the month that year. Many trees that had not shed their leaves became heavily laden by the wet snow. Many branches were broken… And a few trees toppled under the weight of the snow. The landscape became one of rare beauty.

23-25

In 2021…after several weeks of warm…windy and dry weather that fueled the two largest wildfires in the state`s history; a powerful storm system brought welcome relief as it produced heavy snow and frigid temperatures Denver and the Front Range. In the Front Range mountains and foothills… storm totals ranged from 10 to 20 inches. Along the urban corridor…storm totals from 4 to 12 inches were observed… with the heaviest amounts along and generally west of I-25 and over Weld County…where localized bands of heavy snow Some storm totals included 14.3 inches near Allenspark; and 12.9 inches in southeast Boulder and Nederland…with 12.8 inches near Loveland. At Denver International Airport…4.0 inches of snowfall was observed.

24

In 1956…southwest winds gusted to 56 mph and produced some blowing dust at Stapleton Airport. A cold front produced a thunderstorm with 1/8 inch hail. Rain later changed to snow. Precipitation totaled only 0.11 inch and snowfall only 0.3 inch.

In 1973…strong winds raked the eastern foothills…causing damage in Boulder and Jefferson counties. The heaviest damage occurred in the Boulder area where 20 to 25 mobile homes were hit…some power and telephone lines were blown down…and a store was damaged. A wind gust to 76 mph was recorded in Boulder at the National Bureau of Standards. Northwest winds gusted to 46 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

24-25

In 1921…rainfall totaled 0.35 inch overnight behind an apparent cold front. North winds were sustained to 40 mph with gusts to 46 mph on the 25th. Temperatures plunged from a high of 73 degrees on the 24th to a low of 39 degrees on the 25th.

In 1923…rain overnight changed to snow during the morning. The heavy snowfall accumulated to 12.0 inches before ending on the morning of the 25th. Post-frontal north winds were sustained to 22 mph with gusts to 23 mph on the 24th.

In 1997…one of the worst and deadliest blizzards of the decade developed over eastern Colorado as deep east to northeast flow associated with a vigorous upper level low pressure system over the Four Corners…combined with a strong arctic air mass over the central great plains. Snowfall totals across metro Denver ranged from 14 to 31 inches. The heaviest snowfall occurred in the foothills west and southwest of Denver where 2 to 4 feet of snow were measured. Sustained winds to 40 mph with gusts as high as 60 mph produced zero visibilities and extremely cold wind chill temperatures from 25 below to 40 below zero. Winds whipped the snow into drifts 4 to 10 feet deep. Several major and interstate highways were closed as travel became impossible. Red Cross shelters were set up for hundreds of travelers who became stranded when they had to abandon their vehicles. Four people died in northeastern Colorado as a result of the blizzard. None of the deaths were in metro Denver. At Denver International Airport…4 thousand travelers were stranded when the airport was forced to shut down. At least 120 cars were abandoned along Pena Blvd….the only arterial leading into and out of dia. The blizzard cost air carriers at least 20 million dollars. Thousands of cattle died in the storm over northeastern Colorado…resulting in losses totaling 1.5 million dollars. Some of the more impressive snowfall totals included: 51 inches at Coal Creek Canyon; 48 inches at Silver Spruce Ranch…near Ward; 42 inches at Intercanyon…in the foothills southwest of Denver; 37 inches at Sedalia; 35 inches at Aspen Springs and Conifer in the foothills west of Denver; 31 inches at Eldorado Springs… Southeast Aurora…and Englewood; and 30 inches on Table Mesa in Boulder. Snowfall totaled 21.9 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport…setting a new 24-hour snowfall record of 19.1 inches for the month. Snowfall totaled only 14 inches at Denver International Airport where north winds gusted to 39 mph on the 24th. High temperature of only 21 degrees on the 25th equaled the record low maximum for the date first set in 1873. Low temperature of only 3 degrees on the 26th set a new record minimum for the date. Continue reading October 23 to October 29: This Week in Denver Weather History

Winter Weather Preparedness Week recap

Winter Weather Preparedness Week concludes. Are you ready for winter?
Winter Weather Preparedness Week concludes. Are you ready for winter?

As we have talked about this week, winter weather can be dangerous and downright deadly.  However, being prepared helps to ensure that you and your family remain safe when the snow starts to fly or other winter weather conditions occur.

It is very easy to ignore the dangers of weather – no matter the season – and find yourself saying, “I wish I would have….” Now is the time to think about how you can prepare for these conditions, before it is too late and you find yourself wishing you had.

In this sixth and final message in a series on Winter Weather Preparedness from the National Weather Service, ThorntonWeather.com reviews the topics we covered this week and directs you to the previous articles and other resources to help you get ready.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BOULDER CO
600 AM MDT SAT OCT 22 2022

Enjoy the great outdoors in Colorado this winter season, but watch the weather.

The National Weather Service issues a variety of winter weather, outlooks, watches, warnings, and advisories, covered earlier during this Winter Weather Preparedness Week.  Safety tips were also passed along.

Continue reading Winter Weather Preparedness Week recap

Avalanche safety – Be prepared or die

Avalanches claim lives every year in Colorado. Before you head to the mountains, be sure you are prepared! (Wikimedia Commons)
Avalanches claim lives every year in Colorado. Before you head to the mountains, be sure you are prepared! (Wikimedia Commons)

As snow starts to fall, many Coloradoans and out of state visitors will take advantage of it and head to the mountains for a variety of outdoor activities.  Whether skiing, snowshoeing, or hiking, anyone who spends time outdoors in the high country needs to be aware of the danger avalanches present.  On average six people die in Colorado every year from avalanches and being prepared is an essential survival skill.

In this fifth in a series on Winter Weather Preparedness from the National Weather Service, ThorntonWeather.com helps you understand avalanches, where they occur, how to protect yourself and where to go for more information.  If you are headed to the high country, be sure to check out our Avalanche Information & Forecast page.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DENVER CO
600 AM MDT FRI OCT 21 2022

Avalanches – Are you prepared?

Thousands of avalanches occur each winter in the mountains of Colorado. With the enormous popularity of winter sports in Colorado, this poses a risk to skiers, snowboarders, snowmobilers, and people traveling in the backcountry. On average 6 people die in Avalanches in the state of Colorado every year. Anyone who travels into the high country in the winter should be prepared for avalanches And know how to avoid them.

The most important thing to know is how to get information on current avalanche conditions. Check the Colorado Avalanche Information Center website at http://avalanche.state.co.us/ for the current avalanche forecast and the National Weather Service website http://www.weather.gov for the current weather forecast in your area. Knowing the current and future conditions will help you make good decisions in the backcountry.

A little information about avalanche safety can go a long way. Most avalanches occur during or just after snowstorms on a slopes between 30 to 45 degrees. A significant snowfall may result in an unstable snowpack. By waiting at least 36 hours after a big snow or wind storm before you go into the mountains the Snow may become more stable and less likely to avalanche. If you stay in valleys away from avalanche chutes, in stands of dense trees, or on gentle slopes you can decrease the risk of being caught in an avalanche.

If you are a skier or snowboarder at a commercial ski area the risk from avalanches is lower than in the backcountry. Ski patrols work to reduce the chance of an avalanche on open slopes. Respect the rules of the ski area, stay on open slopes, and do not stray out of bounds or into closed areas. The avalanche risk is higher outside of the ski area boundaries.

If you want to enjoy the great outdoors in areas prone to avalanches…You can reduce the danger by following a few simple rules:

  • Check the current avalanche forecast to get information on current and forecast avalanche conditions. Also check the latest weather forecast to see if conditions are likely to change while you are in the backcountry.
  • Never travel alone. Always have one or more companions. Even small avalanches can be fatal. If you are alone and get trapped, you may not be found until spring.
  • If crossing a slope that may be prone to avalanches, do it one person at a time. You want to minimize the impact on your party if an avalanche is accidentally released.
  • In avalanche country, all members of your party should carry avalanche rescue equipment including an avalanche beacon, shovel and probe pole. This increases your chances of a successful rescue and finding your friends alive.

Avalanche conditions in Colorado are monitored and forecasted by the Colorado Avalanche Information Center, CAIC. You can get more information on avalanches, avalanche forecasts, avalanchesafety and request a safety class from CAIC. Go to their website…Http://www.colorado.gov/avalanche or call the center at 303-499-9650.

Winter Weather Preparedness Week continues through Saturday. Now is the time to get prepared for winter so you can safely enjoy the outdoors and travel safely when the snow flies.

Avalanche Safety Tips

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