Current Watches and Warnings
Colorado, Phillips County
Public Information Statement
Statement as of 6:45 PM MDT on April 18, 2015
... This week in Metro Denver weather history...
17-19 in 1920... snow fell across the city continuously for 57 hours...
from the early morning of the 17th until 11:40 am on the
19th. The heavy wet snowfall totaled 18.2 inches with the
greatest accumulation on the ground of 12 inches. Winds
during the storm were strong with sustained speeds in
excess of 27 mph for over 40 consecutive hours... which
created near-blizzard conditions. The highest recorded
wind speeds were 44 mph with gusts to 50 mph from the
north on the 17th and 39 mph with gusts to 48 mph from
the northwest on the 18th. The strong winds piled the
snow into high drifts which stopped all Denver traffic.
Railroads were blocked with only one train entering the
city on the 19th. All interurban trains were blocked... as
were the 13 trolley lines. Thus... many workers were unable
to get home at night and filled all of the downtown hotels
to capacity. No grocery or fuel deliveries were possible...
except milk and Coal to hospitals and to families with
babies. No lives were lost in the city... but several people
perished in surrounding districts. Stock losses were heavy
on the plains. Temperatures during the storm were in the
18-19 in 1884... a major storm dumped 13.8 inches of snowfall on
downtown Denver. Most of the snow... 10.0 inches... fell on
the 18th. Light rain on the early morning of the 18th
changed to heavy snow at 8:00 am and became light after
2:00 PM but continued until 4:00 am on the 19th. The
snow melted nearly as fast as it fell. There were only
3 inches on the ground early on the morning of the 19th.
In 1941... heavy snowfall totaled 8.4 inches over downtown
Denver. Northeast winds were sustained to 17 mph.
In 1993... sporadic high winds occurred across Metro Denver.
Significant wind gusts included 97 mph at Rollinsville...
80 mph in southwest Boulder... and 55 mph at Stapleton
International Airport. The strong winds snapped a Pine
Tree top... about 15 feet long and 8 inches in diameter... which
crashed through the roof of a church in Evergreen... causing
one thousand dollars in damage. Wind gusts of 50 to 60 mph
caused structural damage to 3 homes under construction in
Broomfield. Northwest winds gusted to 55 mph at Stapleton
In 1995... the second Spring storm of the month dumped heavy
snow in the foothills. The upslope flow along with areas of
thunder snow dropped 6 to 12 inches of snow in the foothills
west of Denver and Boulder. Snowfall totaled 4.6 inches at
the site of the former Stapleton International Airport... but
most of the snow melted as it fell. East winds gusted to
29 mph at Denver International Airport on the 18th.
18-20 in 1966... sub-freezing temperatures caused thousands of
dollars in damage to fruit trees across Metro Denver.
Minimum temperatures were in the teens each morning and
failed to reach above freezing on the 19th. The low
temperature of 13 on the 20th set a new record minimum for
the date. Snowfall totaled 5.7 inches at Stapleton
International Airport during the period.
19 in 1899... northwest winds were sustained to 48 mph with
gusts as high as 60 mph in the city.
In 1941... the last snow of the season... 0.4 inch... occurred...
marking the end of the shortest snow season... 167 days.
The first snow of the season... a trace... occurred on
November 4... 1940.
In 1954... strong gusty winds raked Metro Denver for most of
the day producing some blowing dust. At midday... a severe
dust devil was sighted in the Westwood area of southwest
In 1955... cold west winds at 52 mph with gusts as high as 69
mph were recorded at Stapleton Airport where blowing dust
reduced the visibility to 1/2 mile.
In 1960... the second wind storm in 3 days produced sustained
west winds up to 44 mph with gusts as high as 58 mph at
Stapleton Airport. Winds were strong and gusty most of
the day... but no damage was reported.
In 1963... the second windy day in a row produced west-
northwest wind gusts to 52 mph at Stapleton Airport.
In 1971... a tornado occurred in the southwest corner of Weld
County about 10 miles west-northwest of Brighton. The
storm moved through a farm yard damaging equipment and
structures. The strong tornadic winds lifted a stock tank
over 2 fences into a Corral 150 feet away. Later... a
tornado touched down briefly west-southwest of Buckley
field... 8 miles southeast of Stapleton International
Airport. No damage was reported.
In 1985... high winds occurred in the foothills. Winds gusted
to 97 mph atop Squaw Mountain in the foothills west of
Denver. West winds gusted to 37 mph at Stapleton
In 1987... a powerful cold front produced high winds and
engulfed Metro Denver in huge clouds of blowing dust that
lowered the visibility to as little as 100 yards. The cold
front generated winds as high as 72 mph at Brighton... 67 mph
in Thornton... and 54 mph at Stapleton International Airport.
Winds of 50 to 70 mph were common along the Front Range from
Denver north. The high wind gusts flipped a light plane
taxiing at Stapleton International Airport... slightly
injuring two people on board. The cold front dropped the
temperature from a high of 80 degrees at 3:00 PM to a low of
33 degrees at midnight. Nearly an inch of snow... 0.8 inch...
fell at Stapleton International Airport before midnight.
In 1988... a tornado touched down in Fort Lupton... following a
path 50 to 75 yards wide for 2 1/2 blocks. The twister
damaged roofs on 2 schools and broke numerous windows;
about 10 houses were damaged and several cars had windows
blown out. Several trees were downed.
In 1989... winds were clocked to 68 mph in Wheat Ridge.
Microburst winds gusted to 35 mph at Stapleton International
In 1996... high winds gusting from 70 to near 100 mph developed
in the Front Range foothills and adjacent plains. Numerous
power outages were reported as power lines and poles were
downed. The high winds blew the chimney off the roof of a
house in Westminster. Numerous homes received minor shingle
damage. Some of the stronger wind gusts included: 98 mph
at Jefferson County Airport in Broomfield... 91 mph atop Squaw
Mountain west of Denver... and 75 mph atop Table Mesa near
Boulder. West northwest winds gusted to 45 mph at Denver
In 2001... westerly Chinook winds... gusting as high as 40 mph at
Denver International Airport... prevented the low temperature
from dropping below 51 degrees... setting a new record high
minimum for the date. The high temperature of 77 degrees
was not a record.
In 2005... severe thunderstorms produced large hail across
Metro Denver. Hail as large as 1 1/4 inches in diameter
was measured in Arvada. Hail to 1 inch in diameter fell in
Westminster... Northglenn... and Thornton. Hail to 7/8 inch
was reported near Brighton... Barr Lake... and Castle Rock.
Hail to 3/4 inch fell in Elizabeth and Broomfield and near
Golden... Brighton... and Fort Lupton.
19-20 in 1892... rain on the 18th changed to snow on the 19th and
totaled 6.0 inches over downtown Denver into the 20th.
Total precipitation was 1.56 inches. North winds were
sustained to 26 mph on the 19th.
In 1907... a major storm dumped 18.0 inches of snowfall in
downtown Denver. Much of the heavy wet snow melted as
it fell. The most snow on the ground was 7.0 inches at
6:00 PM on the 19th. North to northeast winds were
sustained to 42 mph on the 19th and to 21 mph on the
20th. High temperatures were in the low to mid 30's
with low readings around 20.
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 in 1874... light snow fell for most of the day... but melted almost
as fast as it fell. The flakes... as large as 1 1/2 inches in
diameter during the afternoon... resembled white feathers.
Precipitation from melted snow was only 0.21 inch in the
city. Snowfall was much heavier in the mountain Parks
where snow depths were reported between 3 and 5 feet from
the storms of the 15th and 20th. The heavy snow resulted
in the deaths of hundreds of cattle and sheep.
In 1875... the city was enveloped in a severe wind and sand
storm. For nearly 30 minutes before the storm... it could
be seen moving toward the city from the northwest as a black
wall of clouds extending only 10 degrees above the horizon.
At 5:30 PM... the sand was sweeping past in such clouds that
objects at a distance of only 10 yards were not visible.
The streets were entirely deserted. The greatest velocity
of wind during the storm was 36 mph from the north-northwest.
The storm diminished by 7:00 PM. Swarms of grasshoppers were
seen today and were reported in all parts of the territory.
In 1897... southwest winds were sustained to 46 mph with gusts
to 50 mph. The apparent Chinook winds warmed the
temperature to a high of 76 degrees.
In 1905... apparent Post-frontal north winds were sustained to
In 1912... west winds were sustained to 42 mph with an extreme
velocity of 48 mph.
In 1958... strong Chinook winds gusted to 52 mph at Stapleton
In 1981... 3/4 inch hail fell in Lakewood with up to one half
inch of rain in a few minutes across northern sections of
of the city of Denver. Thunderstorm rainfall totaled
0.39 inches at Stapleton International Airport... where
1/4 inch hail was also measured.
In 1987... 6 to 12 inches of heavy snow fell in the foothills.
Only 2.5 inches of snow fell at Stapleton International
Airport where the usual flight delays occurred.
In 2005... severe thunderstorms produced large hail across
Metro Denver. Hail as large as 1 3/4 inches in diameter
fell at Denver International Airport. Hail to 3/4 inch
in diameter fell in and near Golden and near Hudson...
Keenesburg... Barr Lake... and Bennett.
In 2013... an avalanche pushed a group of six snow boarders
into the sheep creek Gully of Loveland Pass. This is
near but outside the Loveland ski area boundary. Five of
the six members of the group died as they were completely
buried. The avalanche is the deadliest in Colorado since
1962 when seven people were killed when a slide buried
residents at Twin Lakes near Independence Pass.
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.
22 in 1896... southwest winds were sustained to 39 mph with gusts
as high 56 mph. The apparent Chinook winds warmed the
temperature to a high of 78 degrees.
In 1904... west winds sustained to 40 mph with gusts to 48 mph
warmed the temperature to a high of 69 degrees.
In 1925... southeast winds sustained to 42 mph with gusts
to 46 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 76 degrees.
In 1958... west-northwest winds gusted to 48 mph at Stapleton
22-23 in 1885... the worst snow storm since station records
- Alabama - Flood Warning , Flash Flood Watch, Coastal Hazard Statement , Flash Flood Watch , Special Statement
- Alaska - Wind Advisory , Blizzard Warning
- Arizona - Fire Weather Warning
- Arkansas - Flood Warning , Flood Advisory , Hydrologic Statement
- American Samoa - Flash Flood Warning , Flash Flood Watch
- California - Record Report
- Colorado - Tornado Watch , Tornado Watch , Winter Weather Advisory , Winter Storm Warning , Record Report , Public Information Statement
- Connecticut - Flood Warning
- Florida - Flood Warning , Flash Flood Watch, Coastal Hazard Statement , Flash Flood Watch , Record Report
- Georgia - Flash Flood Watch , Areal Flood Watch , Special Statement , Record Report
- Illinois - Flood Warning
- Indiana - Flood Warning
- Iowa - Public Information Statement
- Kansas - Severe Thunderstorm Watch , Tornado Watch , Tornado Watch , Severe Thunderstorm Warning , Special Statement
- Kentucky - Flood Warning , Flood Advisory
- Louisiana - Flood Warning , Flood Watch , Flood Advisory , Hydrologic Statement , Record Report
- Maine - Areal Flood Warning , Coastal Flood Watch
- Minnesota - Public Information Statement
- Mississippi - Flash Flood Warning , Flood Warning , Flash Flood Watch , Flood Advisory , Special Statement , Hydrologic Statement , Record Report
- Missouri - Flood Warning , Flood Advisory
- Montana - Lake Wind Advisory
- Nebraska - Severe Thunderstorm Watch , Tornado Watch , Tornado Watch , Severe Thunderstorm Warning , Areal Flood Advisory , Special Statement , Record Report , Public Information Statement
- New Hampshire - Coastal Flood Watch
- New Mexico - Wind Advisory , Fire Weather Warning
- North Carolina - Areal Flood Watch , Record Report
- North Dakota - Flood Warning
- Oklahoma - Severe Thunderstorm Watch , Severe Thunderstorm Watch , Tornado Watch , Severe Thunderstorm Warning , Severe Thunderstorm Warning , Special Statement , Hydrologic Statement
- South Carolina - Areal Flood Watch , Record Report
- South Dakota - Public Information Statement
- Tennessee - Flood Warning , Flood Advisory
- Texas - Severe Thunderstorm Watch , Severe Thunderstorm Watch , Tornado Watch , Severe Thunderstorm Warning , Flash Flood Warning , Flood Warning , Areal Flood Advisory , Fire Weather Warning , Special Statement , Hydrologic Statement , Record Report , Public Information Statement
- Utah - Record Report , Public Information Statement
- Virginia - Areal Flood Watch
- Wyoming - Winter Weather Advisory , Winter Storm Warning , Record Report