Current Watches and Warnings
Colorado, Jefferson and West Douglas Counties Above 6000 Feet/Gilpin/Clear Creek/Northeast Park Counties Below 9000 Feet
Public Information Statement
Statement as of 2:59 AM MDT on April 21, 2014
... Today in Metro Denver weather history...
19-21 in 1984... a large snowstorm buried most of Colorado under a
thick mantle of wet snow. Total snow amounts ranged from
10 to 20 inches across Metro Denver and a whopping 20 to
40 inches in the adjacent foothills. The snow closed roads
and damaged electrical transformers... causing numerous power
outages. Nearly 14 inches (13.6) of snow fell at Stapleton
International Airport where the combination of snow and
wind closed all but one runway... resulting in the cancellation
of many flights. Both I-70 and I-76 were closed to the east
19-22 in 1933... a major storm dumped 16.8 inches of snowfall over
downtown Denver when rain changed to snow during the early
morning of the 20th and continued through midday of the
22nd. Most of the snow fell on the 21st. Due to melting...
the most snow on the ground was 10.5 inches at 6:00 PM on the
21st. Before the snow started... a strong cold front on the
evening of the 19th produced north winds sustained to 35 mph
with gusts to 37 mph. The strong winds deposited a thin
layer of dust on the city. North to northwest winds were
sustained to 31 mph with gusts to 35 mph on the 20th and to
29 mph with gusts to 32 mph on the 21st.
20-22 in 1957... strong and gusty south to southeast winds raked
Metro Denver each day. The strongest wind gust of 55 mph
occurred on the 21st when blowing dust briefly reduced the
visibility to 3/4 mile at Stapleton Airport.
20-23 in 1989... unusually warm weather resulted in several daily
temperature records being broken in Denver. The high
temperature of 89 degrees on the 21st exceeded the record
maximum for the month at that time. Daily record high
temperatures were either exceeded or equaled with 83
degrees on the 20th... 88 degrees on the 22nd... and 85
degrees on the 23rd. The low temperature of 55 degrees
on the 22nd equaled the record high minimum for the date.
21 in 1885... rain changed to snow during the early morning and
was the heaviest snow of the season. Total snowfall was
estimated at 8.0 inches over downtown Denver... but the
snow melted rapidly on the ground as it fell. However...
the weight of the snow... as well as northwest winds
sustained to 29 mph downed Telegraph and telephone wires.
Several large branches of trees were also broken by the
weight of the snow. Precipitation totaled 1.01 inches
from the storm.
In 1887... west winds were sustained to 47 mph.
In 1932... the temperature dipped to a low of only 60 degrees...
the all-time record high minimum for the month.
In 1988... a small tornado was observed by National Weather
Service employees about 3 miles northwest of Thornton. It
was on the ground for about 2 minutes. No damage was
reported. Later... lightning struck two 14-year-old girls on
a softball field in Westminster. One was killed... while the
other suffered moderate injuries. Northwest winds gusted
to 44 mph at Stapleton International Airport behind a
In 2010... severe thunderstorms produced large hail... strong
winds and a tornado across parts of Adams... Arapahoe...
Elbert... and Weld counties. The hail... up to 1.50 inches
in diameter... came down so heavy along parts of I-70
and I-76 that snowplows had to be called out to remove
it. Numerous vehicles were damaged by hail. In Weld
County... very heavy rain and hail accompanied
thunderstorm winds up to 75 mph. Hail up to 1.50 inches
was reported near bennett; 1.25 inches... 5.3 miles east
of englewood; 1.0 inch size hail near Buckley field; with
0.88 inch size hail near Boulder. A weak tornado touched
down briefly in Elbert County... about 9 miles southwest of
Deer Trail... but did no damage. Several minor accidents
were reported with snowpacked and slick Road conditions
along with very low visibilities. Minor street flooding
was reported in southeast Aurora. Denver International
Airport recorded 0.30 inches of rainfall. Also... a peak
wind gust to 36 mph from the southeast was observed at
21-22 in 1910... north winds were sustained to 45 mph behind a cold
front. Rainfall totaled 0.63 inch.
In 1923... snowfall of 2.0 inches in the city was the only
snow of the month and the last measurable snow of the
season. Northwest winds were sustained to 25 mph on
In 1952... heavy snowfall totaled 7.6 inches at Stapleton
Airport. The storm was accompanied by north winds gusting
to 33 mph.
In 2001... the second major snow storm in 11 days moved into
Metro Denver with blizzard conditions developing again
across the plains to the northeast of Denver. Snowfall
amounts ranged up to 9 inches in Metro Denver with up to
23 inches in the foothills. Northwest winds were sustained
at 20 to 30 mph with gusts as high as 36 mph at Denver
International Airport which was again shut down for nearly
an hour by power outages on the 22nd. The outages affected
lighting in the concourses... train operations... de-icing and
refueling operations... flight information displays... and
security screenings. Navigational aids were also affected...
resulting in the cancellation of 58 arriving and departing
flights which stranded about 5000 passengers. Across Metro
Denver storm totals included: 9 inches at Eldorado springs;
7 inches in boulder; 6 inches at ken caryl... Northglenn and
near sedalia; and 5 inches in Arvada and Morrison. Only
1.7 inches of snow were measured at the site of the former
Stapleton International Airport. In the foothills snow
totals included: 23 inches near Fritz Peak south of
Rollinsville... 17 inches near Jamestown... 16 inches near
Blackhawk... 14 inches in Coal Creek Canyon... 13 inches at
Idaho Springs and near Nederland... 11 inches at Aspen
Springs... and 10 inches near Bergen Park.
21-23 in 1999... a Spring snowstorm dumped heavy snowfall over Metro
Denver and in the foothills. Nearly 3 feet of snow fell
in the foothills with over a foot in the city. The heavy
wet snow downed power lines in Douglas and Elbert counties.
Scattered outages were reported at Parker... Franktown...
Sedalia... and Castle Rock. Some residents were without
electricity for as long as 20 hours. The inclement weather
was blamed... at least in part... for several traffic accidents
along the I-25 corridor between Denver and Castle Rock.
Snowfall totals included: 32 inches at Idaho springs; 31
inches on crowhill; 29 inches near evergreen; 26 inches at
chief hosa and Coal Creek canyon; 25 inches at bailey; 24
inches at Floyd hill; 23 inches at Conifer... Genesee... Golden
Gate Canyon... north Turkey Creek... and Pine junction; 13
inches at Broomfield and near sedalia; 12 inches in
boulder; 11 inches at Louisville and parker; and 9 inches
at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport.
In 2004... heavy snow fell across Metro Denver... when low level
upslope conditions developed against the foothills and
Palmer Divide. Snowfall totals included: 18 inches in the
foothills southwest of Boulder... 17 inches at intercanyon and
near Conifer... 10 inches near Blackhawk and Parker... 9 inches
at Castle Rock and near Sedalia... 7 inches in Centennial...
Littleton... and near Lone Tree. Elsewhere across Metro
Denver... snowfall generally ranged from 2 to 5 inches.
Snowfall was 4.7 inches at Denver Stapleton. Northwest
winds gusted to 35 mph at Denver International Airport
on the 21st.
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