WEDNESDAY UPDATE Well, the snow is FINALLY finished. This is how it turned out in my backyard.
Snowfall during the snowstorm
You can clearly see three separate waves of snow fell across the state. In all, it totaled more than a foot for many areas. Unofficially at Denver/Stapleton reporting station – there was 107″ of snow reported. Some areas got more, some got less but compared to the long term average snow for October in Denver (which sits at 4.0″), we’ve seen WELL above-normal snowfall. Total snow at Stapleton is 15.7″ for the month. Impressive.
72-Hour snowfall analysis as of Noon on Wednesday.
So, so far we’ve broked 3 records. We *could* set another record by Thursday morning. For this record – we’re gunning for the all-time lowest temperature recording in October. That’s a big one.
Our monthly temperature average is sitting at 45.5º. That’s 5.8º BELOW the normal for the month. We are currently sitting in the 7th spot for coldest October’s but will more extreme cold coming, we could get into the top 5 coldest October’s by the end of Halloween.
TUESDAY UPDATE (10:30am):
This morning’s snow band dropped a good 3-6″ on most of the metro area. The bulk of the storm has yet to impact us so an additional 5-10″ of snow is possible before things wind down Wednesday morning. This is already the snowiest October since 1997!
It’s also cold. We’ve already set a record and more are likely.
This storm is not done yet. It’s cold, snowing and windy. Be prepared for this to last through the Wednesday morning commute.
Just over 6″ of snow in my backyard. Near Cheesman Park
Over a half of a foot of snow fell from Sunday morning to Monday morning in and around the Denver Metro. Some areas in the Foothills saw more than 8″ of snow. This made for a very tricky and slippery morning commute but I think a lot of people were prepared which made it a nice change of pace.
Snow will taper off by this afternoon. We could see an additional 1-2″ of snow by 3pm but that’s pushing it.
Expected temperatures over the next few days.
Phew. That’s some cold air. Denver dropped below freezing on October 26th just before midnight and we’ve been below freezing ever since. And according to the chart above, we’re not planning on getting above freezing until Thursday afternoon. We’re going to go on a streak of being below freezing for over 100 hours!
Over the next few days, several records may be broken. The most notable record is the chance of breaking October’s all-time monthly low temperature. The all-time monthly low temperature for the month of October sits at -2º Fahrenheit which occurred back on October 29, 1917. By Thursday morning we’re nearing 0º. The National Weather Service is forecasting a low of 0º F for Thursday morning but with so much snow on the ground, we could get to -2ºF or possibly colder.
Alright, first, let’s talk about what has happened so far this month. Officially at Denver International Airport, where Denver’s official weather records are kept, it has snow 4.8″ for the month of October. For anyone that lives just about anywhere other than DIA, it has snowed closer to 10-15″ (if not more). Now, at the old Denver/Stapleton airport, they have reported 11.1″ for the month of October which is a better representation of Denver’s actual snow.
With 11.1″ of snow recorded so far this month, we are currently experiencing the snowiest October since 1997 when we totaled 22.1″ for the month. And guess what? With more snow coming, we could end up above that amount which would make this October the snowiest October since 1969. That is yet to be determined but it gives you a sense of the rarity that this snowy October means.
SNOW TO COME
The big question is how much MORE snow is coming? The system that impacted us Sunday – Monday was a shortwave trough that has decent moisture and decent energy with it. There is another shortwave that will move through Tuesday into Wednesday and that one is supposed to be colder, have more moisture with it and have more energy with it. All of that adds up to a snowier and colder storm.
Winter highlights in place through Wednesday
As of right now, the National Weather Service is forecasting 6-12″ of new snow with the upcoming storm. I feel like most of Denver is going to be in the 6-10″ range with higher amounts possible. With the current modeling, snow will begin falling across the Denver Metro Tuesday mid-morning to early afternoon and last through Wednesday Evening. That allows for a solid 24+ hours of snow falling on the city. The snow will be the heaviest Tuesday evening to Wednesday morning.
This will be a very impactful few days for Denver. Extreme cold and extreme snow for the month of October is expected. Please stay prepared for the snow and cold. Have an emergency snow kit in your car just in case. Try to limit travel on the roads as much as possible and take it very slow if you need to venture out. The best thing to do in these situations is to be calm, don’t rush, let your commute take its time and just relax.