Colorado Weather: Fourth of July forecast looks to be okay for any outdoor plans


Fourth of July typically comes with warm temperatures and thunderstorm chances and this weekend, it will be no different.

As you make your way out this weekend, prepare for the threat of lightning and flash flooding, especially near burn scars. Most areas of the state are expecting thundershowers to develop Friday and Saturday with some slight drying for Sunday and Monday.

On Friday, much of Colorado will continue to be under the influence of Monsoon moisture. “A subtropical finger in the jet that is situated over the region will have allowed for an abundance of moisture to be advected in from the onset of the North American Monsoonal wind pattern,” said the NWS in Pueblo. The high pressure that has been bringing the Pacific Northwest intense heat has been weakening and is beginning to slowly push east. The NWS in Boulder explains that this will lessen storm chances slightly on Friday compared to Thursday: “this should mean less precipitation Friday than Thursday, both for the foothills and northeast Colorado in general. Still, the primary concern through the afternoon and evening will again be possible locally heavy rainfall and potential flash flooding, especially for the east slopes of the Front Range.”

Highs on Friday will be slightly cooler than average but you’ll notice that it’ll be one of the warmer days of the week.

Saturday, Independence Day and Monday
A fairly normal summertime pattern is expected for the bulk of the upcoming weekend. A benefit of this pattern change is that storms will actually be moving compared to the slow-moving nature of storms we saw on Thursday. “Increasing flow aloft should mean faster storm motion and decrease the concern for flash flooding around our burn areas,” explained the NWS in Boulder. This ridge of high pressure that is moving in won’t be like what we experienced in the middle of June, in fact, it will only gradually warm our temperatures to near normal readings to slightly above normal readings as Sunday and Monday near. Highs typically push 90-degrees in Denver this time of the year.

Through this weekend, afternoon rain will develop in the mountains in the early afternoon hours and then push east through the afternoon. Normally, rain chances decrease by nighttime across the entire state. Highs will gradually rise into the 90s for all low elevations with 70s and 80s expected in the higher terrain.

Though we could be talking about a few storms over the weekend, they should not turn severe but with any storms, lightning and flash flooding can occur so don’t get caught unprepared. The Western Slope is still battling extreme and exceptional drought so campfires and fireworks are not recommended this weekend. If you are watching any local firework shows, most of those should be able to happen with no significant weather impacts.

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