Author Archives: mkelsch14

About mkelsch14

I work for the COMET Program at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) in Boulder, Colorado. I am the NWS cooperative climate observer and the local CoCoRaHs network coordinator. I have an MS degree in meteorology from the University of Oklahoma, and a BS in meteorology from the State University of New York, College at Oswego.

Cooler/wetter during holiday weekend

5:30 AM MDT, Friday, May 28, 2021

After a warm-than-average and dry Friday, the weekend will trend cooler and wetter, with that trend most obvious on Sunday.

The trend toward less warm will begin on Saturday accompanied by a chance for afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms. Sunday and Monday are likely to be cooler than average (no warmer than the 60s in the low elevations) with a good chance for afternoon and evening rain. In fact, Sunday could end up being a mainly cloudy and damp day.

The chance for rain on the West Slope is not a great, but even there some late day thunderstorms are likely to be scattered around.

Afternoon-evening showers and thunderstorms this weekend

12:15 PM MDT, Friday, May 14, 2021

We are in a pattern with a higher-than-average amount of atmospheric moisture over the Front Range region, but without an organized storm system, at least through the first half weekend. The result for today, Saturday, and Sunday is generally party sunny and dry mornings to early afternoons (except for some localized fog or low clouds in the early morning), and then a scattering of showers and thunderstorms from mid afternoon through early evening. Not every location will get wet each day, but by Sunday night most places will probably see rain at least once.

By the end of the weekend there may be an organized, slow-moving storm system moving into the Front Range region that taps the moisture and leads to a more steady period of clouds and rain late on Sunday and/or on Monday. It’s not looking to be cold enough for snow except the higher elevations (above Nederland and Estes).

Rain and snow Monday-Tuesday

12:30 PM MDT, Sunday, May 9, 2021

The moist, cooler-than-average weather is likely to hang on until Wednesday, and it is likely to get wetter (and snowier) before it dries out. It looks like late Monday and Monday night may be the wettest period, and the period when the snow works its way to the lower elevations.

For today and part of Monday, expect cool weather with occasional breaks in the overcast, but also with some showers of thundershowers (rain below 6500 feet, snow above 8000 feet, and a mix between).

Late Monday afternoon into early Tuesday morning is when we may see some steady precipitation with the snow level lowering. Right now it looks like we should see 6-12 inches in areas above 7500 feet, and a highly variable 2-8 inches from 6000-7500 feet. In the lower elevations it looks like there will be enough snow after that changeover so that many areas will get 1-3 inches on vegetation, cars, and picnic tables.

There may be additional showers along with some periods of sun Tuesday and Wednesday, rain in the lower elevations. Warm weather is expected to return Thursday.

Colder, with rain & snow by Monday

12:15 PM MDT, Friday, May 7, 2021

The weekend will see a cooling trend with a chance for showers or thunderstorms, mainly in the afternoons. Saturday should be cooler than today but still be rather springlike for most of the day, then Sunday will be cooler.

The real story is Sunday night through Tuesday morning. Another cold, wet storm may be moving through the Front Range region, and like last Monday’s storm, it may be capable of producing over an inch of liquid. Unlike last Monday’s storm, this one might be a couple degrees colder. If that happens, rain could change to snow even in the lower elevations. I will update later in the weekend.

Weekend Weather: Warm & dry start, cooler & wetter finish

Another wet storm system is heading for the Front Range region Sunday evening through Monday. But Saturday will be a warm, dry day, perhaps the warmest so far this Spring. Temperatures are likely to top 80 in most low elevation locations.

Sunday may start out mild and dry, but a cooling trend is expected by afternoon, with showers and thunderstorms developing. Sunday night and Monday are looking like a mainly cloudy and wet period. As with the storm earlier this week, elevation will make a big difference in rain versus snow. It appears at this point that it will be mainly or all rain below 6000 feet, mainly or all snow about 8000 feet, and a mix of both in the foothills with more trend toward snow with time. The potential exists for over a foot of snow in the high elevations (above treeline) and an inch of rain in the lower elevations. Warm weather is likely to return in the second half of next week.

Rain, snow (maybe thunder) Tuesday afternoon into Wednesday morning

12:30 PM MDT, Monday, April 26, 2021

A wet spring storm is forecast to move through the Front Range region Tuesday afternoon and night, possibly lingering into Wednesday morning. Depending on location and elevation, the region should see rain, snow, thunder, and maybe some hail.

Elevation will be a big factor for rain versus snow this time around. Above 8000 feet the precipitation should be mostly or all snow, with 7-14 inches.

In the 6000-8000 elevation range there will probably be a transition from rain to snow, with some areas only getting and inch or two of snow, and other areas in the 6-8 inch range.

Below 6000 feet it looks like mostly or all rain, but some areas could see a change to snow by Wednesday morning with minor accumulation (an inch or two) in grassy areas. There could also be some thunderstorms with brief heavy rain and hail Tuesday afternoon. Overall, it looks like many areas will get about 1/2 to 1 inch of liquid, but where there are local heavy thunderstorms, there could be around 2 inches of liquid for the storm.

Warm spring weather should return by the end of the week.

More cool & unsettled weather, but warmer this weekend

5AM MDT, Wednesday, 21 April 2021

Major amounts of rain or snow are not expected for the remainder of the week, but cloudy periods with some light amounts of precipitation are likely. Then the weekend is looking warmer and drier, with lower elevation temperatures in the 60s Saturday, and 70s Sunday and Monday.

For today and tonight, some intermittent light snow is possible. Most areas will probably not see any accumulation, and where it does accumulate, it will probably be an inch of two. Thursday and Friday should see more breaks in the clouds, but a scattering of showers is likely in the afternoon/evening, probably rain lower elevations and snow higher up. Again, no significant amounts are expected. A trend toward less cold should be evident by Friday.

Colder Monday, snow by late afternoon/evening

12:30 PM MDT, Sunday, April 18, 2021

A strong cold front on Monday will put an end to our brief warm-up, and snow will likely develop Monday afternoon and continue into the evening. The cold front will likely be through Cheyenne by morning. Farther south along the Colorado Front Range, the morning may start mild, but the day will turn colder. A roughly 12-hour period of snow (maybe a little rain at the start in the lower elevations) is likely to develop in the afternoon, early-to-mid afternoon in southeastern Wyoming, late afternoon farther south in metro Denver. There will probably be about 1-4 hours of heavy snow from some east-west oriented bands that move north-to-south. Snow should be over by Tuesday morning, but temperatures by Tuesday morning are likely to be the coldest of the month, teens to around 20 in the urban corridor.

Accumulation below 6500 feet: mainly 3-6″. Being close to the foothills is not necessarily where the highest amounts will be. It’s more dependent on where the east-west bands are at their peak strength.

Accumulation above 6500 feet: 5-10 inches, again this is somewhat dependent on where the bands of heavy snow set up.

Beyond Tuesday:

I’d like to say that this long duration cool spell will end, and I expect that it will end by the weekend. But another weak storm at midweek is likely to bring some more precipitation and extend the colder-than-average stretch into Thursday.

Milder Sunday, then more cold and snow Monday

3PM MDT, Friday, April 16, 2021

The main part of the western storm that has kept us cold and cloudy for days has moved east, but a part of it is left behind and won’t be east of us until later on Saturday. So we should continue colder than average with cloudy periods and some flurries or light snow. Accumulation should be minor, if any. It does look like Saturday should have some breaks in the cloud cover and temperatures pushing into the 40s in the lower elevations.

Sunday will be the mild day of the weekend ahead of the next cold front. Monday is likely to turn colder with snow developing from north to south. It looks like this could be another significant snowfall with around 6 inches in parts of the urban corridor. But more on that as we get closer. One thing to note is that despite our long stretch of cold days, we have not seen record levels. Monday’s cold front has the potential to be colder than this recent stretch, possibly getting into the teens Tuesday morning in the lower elevations.

Snow Thursday afternoon and night

12:30 PM MDT, Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Our cold and unsettled weather will likely continue into Saturday. However, the period with a risk of significant snow accumulation looks like late Thursday and Thursday night. A large storm system over the western United States has been keeping us in this cool and cloudy weather, and a big piece of the storm system will start to move eastward across the Rockies on Thursday.

Initial precipitation Thursday afternoon could be rain or mixed in the lower elevations, then snow late Thursday afternoon and into the night. There could be some brief periods of moderate or heavy snow. By Friday morning the general accumulations in the lower elevations will probably be in the range of 3-6 inches, with 5-10 inches above 7000 feet.

Period of clouds and maybe some more flurries or light snow could linger into Saturday, but accumulations after Friday morning are likely to be minor.