Unseasonably warm and dry Thanksgiving weekend

11:30 AM, Tuesday, November 21, 2017

The whole Rocky Mountain region and adjacent high plains are in for a dry and unseasonably warm Thanksgiving weekend. There may be a slight and temporary cool-down late Friday and Saturday, but the cold and snow that sometimes occur this time of year are not expected.

A small chance for record highs

There is only a small chance for reaching record highs, but we should at least get close. The record highs for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday in Denver are 74 (1998), 73 (1915), and 74 (1990). For Boulder the Wed-Fri records are 73 (2006), 72 (1901), and 71 (1990). On Saturday we might be a bit cooler and the record is an impressive 77 (1990) in both places, so that one seems very out of reach. Right now it appears Sunday could be approaching record warmth again (72 in both locations).

Travel weather

Given that this time of year does sometimes bring major storm systems, this year appears rather quiet by comparison. Clouds and precipitation are likely to effect parts of the Pacific Northwest on Wednesday and Thursday and again at the end of the weekend. It may be showery in Florida on Thanksgiving day.

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Colder and a bit unsettled late Friday and Saturday

2:00 PM, Thursday, November 16, 2017

A cold front will make itself known late Friday and may be accompanied by some precipitation, mainly in the elevations above treeline and the West Slope region.

 

For the Front Range expect cool winds to move in on Friday with some areas of rain or snow showers late Friday or Friday night. This is probably going to be a fairly minor precipitation event for the foothills and plains, and some areas might not get any. Above treeline and closer to the continental divide there may be 6 or more inches of snow and blowing snow. Cool, dry weather Saturday should give way to milder weather Sunday.

Maybe a little more snow this evening

7:30 AM MST, Tuesday, November 7, 2017

If you live in Denver (or south of Denver) you are probably wondering where the snow is. Roughly 1-5 inches accumulated through early Tuesday morning from around Broomfield north to Cheyenne (more in the mountains). Little or nothing accumulated from Denver southward.

 

After a lull today it appears that some areas of light snow may redevelop late this afternoon or evening from the Denver-Boulder area southward. Around an inch may occur, so it’s possible that Denver will whiten up a bit.

Dry weather is expected the rest of the week.

Some snow this evening and Tuesday

6:20 AM, Monday, November 6, 2017

Colder weather and intermittent snow (maybe starting briefly as rain) is expected this evening into at least Tuesday morning. Most areas should have light accumulation. A return to more seasonable temperatures is expected by Thursday.

Timing

The front and initial precipitation is expected this evening, possibly late afternoon in southeastern Wyoming. Most of what we get will probably occur overnight and Tuesday morning, but there is a good chance for clouds and maybe flurries to linger into late Tuesday.

 

Accumulation

1-3 inches should be the most common amount below 7000 feet

3-5 inches will probably be common above 7000 feet (maybe 5-10 in local areas above treeline, especially the northern Front Range)

Chance for enhanced snowband: This is the kind of storm where a long-narrow, west-east band can develop and enhance snowfall rates in the lower elevations, but only for about 10% of the area. That could cause local amounts in the 3-6 inch range. Right now (as of this 6 AM writing) it appears the best chance for that would be in northern Larimer County or in the Cheyenne area. The chance for a heavy snowband over the Denver or Boulder area is much smaller, but it’s not a zero chance.

Weekend: Some snow in mountains; Front Range foothills and plains dry, but cooler Sunday

12:30 PM MDT, Friday, November 3, 2017

Front Range foothills and eastern plains

Dry weather with unseasonably warm weather is expected Saturday along with some areas of gusty winds. Mainly dry weather should continue behind a cold front Sunday and temperatures will likely be closer to seasonal norms (high of mid-upper 50s in the urban corridor). There may be some areas of clouds Sunday but there is very little chance for precipitation. The next chance for precipitation is on Tuesday, but that will probably be minor if there is any at all.

Mountains

Areas of snow are likely in the higher mountains beginning Saturday and lasting into Sunday. There will likely be some areas with more than 6 inches near and west of the higher ridges, including some high passes. There could also be a few rain or snow showers in the western valleys.

Daylight Saving Time ends

The clocks go back an hour Sunday morning, so you get an extra hour in your weekend!

Strong cold front late Sunday

2:00 PM, Saturday, October 28, 2017

A strong cold front, similar to the one on Thursday, will move north-to-south down the Front Range late Sunday. A period of low clouds and a few areas of light precipitation are  likely Sunday evening and Monday.

Sunday should start mild but may begin to turn cold during the afternoon north of Denver, perhaps toward evening to the south. There isn’t a lot of moisture with it, but there should be enough combined with the upslope flow to form low clouds and maybe a few areas of drizzle or freezing drizzle along the lower foothills and adjacent plains. There is even a small chance for a period of snow if we manage to get some mid and high level moisture (that provides the ice crystals that help snowflakes form). Accumulations should be minor, if any.

 

Halloween is looking dry but cool, with milder weather by midweek.

Sharp cold front Thursday

1:00 PM, Wednesday, October 25, 2017

A strong cold front will surge down the Front Range Thursday morning through mid day bringing much colder weather to the Front Range and eastern plains along with low clouds and maybe some areas of light precipitation. Cold weather should continue through Saturday morning, but dry weather is expected after Thursday evening.

 

Behind the cold front there will likely be low clouds and some local areas of drizzle or freezing drizzle. It’s looking like there could even be a period of light snow in the midday through early evening period, depending on where you are. Accumulation should be minor, if any. West Slope areas are less likely to feel as much impact.