Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Denver/Boulder, CO
NOUS45 KBOU 190145
Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Denver/Boulder CO
645 PM MST SAT FEB 18 2017
...This week in metro Denver weather history...
17-19 In 2006...a cold spell resulted in 4 temperature records.
Low temperatures of 10 degrees below zero on the 17th...
13 degrees below zero on the 18th...and 4 degrees below
zero on the 19th were record minimums for those dates.
The high temperature of only 7 degrees on the 18th was
a record low maximum for the date. Light snow fell on
the 17th...but totaled less than half an inch at Denver
18-19 In 1954...a vigorous cold front produced north winds gusting
to 56 mph and a trace of snowfall at Stapleton Airport on
the 18th. Strong and gusty winds to 55 mph persisted
through the next day and caused some blowing dust.
In 1955...a storm dumped heavy snow across metro Denver. At
Stapleton Airport where north winds sustained to 28 mph
produced some blowing snow...snowfall totaled 8.8 inches.
18-20 In 1913...post-frontal snowfall totaled 6.9 inches in downtown
Denver over the 3 days. Most of the snow fell on the 19th.
Northeast winds were sustained to 21 mph with a measured
extreme velocity to 24 mph on the 18th.
In 1924...light snowfall totaled 4.6 inches over the 3 days.
This was the only measurable snowfall of the month. High
temperatures plunged from 45 degrees on the 18th to 17
degrees on the 20th. Low temperatures dipped from 31
degrees on the 18th to only 8 degrees on the 20th.
Northeast winds were sustained to 24 mph on the 19th.
In 1953...a major blizzard dumped 10.6 inches of snowfall at
Stapleton Airport. Strong north winds at sustained speeds
of 25 to 35 mph with gusts as high as 44 mph frequently
reduced visibilities to 1/4 mile in blowing snow during the
day of the 19th. The strong winds caused much drifting
snow...making accurate snowfall measurements almost
impossible. Precipitation from the storm totaled 1.13
inches. The 1.01 inches of precipitation on the 19th
was the greatest calendar day and 24 hour precipitation
ever recorded in the city during the month of February.
In 1987...large amounts of new snow fell in the Front Range
foothills. The foothills received 10 to 20 inches of new
snow with 4 to 8 inches on the adjacent plains. On the
19th...flight delays occurred at Stapleton International
Airport where snowfall totaled 4.2 inches and east winds
gusted to only 18 mph on the 19th. Schools were closed
in the foothills above Boulder.
19 In 1899...northwest winds sustained to 42 mph with gusts
to 45 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 56 degrees...
the highest reading of the month that year.
In 1980...high winds were reported in Boulder. Sustained
speeds of 50 to 60 mph with gusts to 85 mph were measured.
West winds gusted to 31 mph at Stapleton International
In 1986...chinook winds continued to buffet the eastern
foothills. Winds gusting from 60 to 75 mph were common
in the foothills. West winds gusted to 41 mph at Stapleton
In 1996...high winds gusting from 70 to 75 mph were reported
atop Table Mesa near Boulder. West winds gusted to 44 mph
at Denver International Airport.
In 2007...this was the last day of 61 consecutive days with
snow cover of 1 inch or more in Denver. This second
longest period of snow cover on record began with the
blizzard on December 20-21...2006...when 20.7 inches of snow
fell at the site of the former Stapleton International
Airport where official snow measurements were taken.
Additional snowfall during December...January...and February
prolonged the event. Snow depth on the ground was measured
to the nearest inch once daily at 6:00 AM MST.
19-20 In 1937...post-frontal heavy snowfall totaled 8.4 inches over
downtown Denver. Most of the snow...6.6 inches...fell on the
20th when north winds were sustained to 16 mph with gusts
to 18 mph. The temperature dipped to a low of 9 degrees
on the 20th.
In 1939...post-frontal snowfall totaled 5.4 inches in the
city. The snow covered streets and highways with a coating
of ice as the temperature fell from 36 degrees at 2:00 PM on
the 19th to a low of 4 degrees at 3:00 AM on the 20th. Many
motorists were marooned for several hours. Northeast winds
were sustained to 24 mph on the 19th.
19-21 In 1971...heavy snowfall totaled 9.0 inches at Stapleton
International Airport where north winds gusted to only
16 mph. Most of the snow occurred on the 19th and 20th.
The 24 hour snowfall of 8.2 inches was the greatest in
February since 1953.
20 In 1937...6.6 inches of heavy snow fell in downtown Denver.
In 1976...a cold front produced north wind gusts to 49 mph at
Stapleton International Airport where snowfall totaled 4.7
inches. North winds at sustained speeds of 20 to 30 mph
with higher gusts persisted throughout the day...producing
much blowing snow. East of the city...winds gusting 40 to
80 mph caused blizzard conditions and produced drifts 2 to
4 feet high.
In 1981...a vigorous cold front at midday produced strong
northeast winds at 20 mph with gusts to 30 mph and billows
of blowing dust reducing the visibility to 3 miles during
the afternoon. Even stronger winds from the north at
25 mph with gusts to 45 mph in snow and blowing snow
reduced the visibility to 1/4 mile during the evening.
Snowfall totaled only 2.6 inches at Stapleton
20-21 In 1997...heavy snow fell in the foothills. Snowfall totals
included: 16 inches at Eldora Ski Area; 15 inches at South
Turkey Creek; 14 inches at Conifer and Morrison; and 11
inches at Blackhawk...Evergreen...and Intercanyon. Only
1.0 inch of snow fell at the site of the former Stapleton
International Airport. Northeast winds gusted to 32 mph
at Denver International Airport on the 20th.
In 2014...high winds occurred in and near the foothills of
Boulder and Jefferson Counties. Peak wind reports included:
93 mph near Gold Hill; 89 mph at NCAR Mesa Lab; 83 mph at
the National Wind Technology Center; 76 mph...in Boulder...4
miles east-northeast of Nederland and the Junction of
Colorado Highways 72 and 93; and 75 mph at Lyons. Scattered
electrical outages were reported in Boulder...Denver and
Littleton...which affected 3400 Xcel Energy customers. At
Denver International Airport...a peak wind of 50 mph was
observed from the west on the 21st.
21 In 1901...northwest winds sustained to 43 mph with gusts
to 46 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 55 degrees.
In 1935...strong west to northwest winds sustained to 30 mph
with gusts to 34 mph produced considerable blowing dust.
The chinook winds warmed the temperature to a high of 60
In 1967...west winds gusting to 53 mph produced some blowing
dust at Stapleton International Airport. Winds were strong
and gusty all day.
In 1988...high winds were reported along the foothills with
90 mph in east Boulder where the winds knocked out a few
street and traffic lights. The strong winds whipped a
grass and timber fire in Boulder Canyon. The fire
threatened some homes for a time...but was extinguished
before causing any significant property damage. West
winds gusting to 35 mph at Stapleton International Airport
warmed the temperature to a high of 63 degrees.
21-22 In 1909...a major storm dumped 12.9 inches of heavy snowfall
over the city. North winds were sustained to 37 mph on the
22nd. Temperatures during the storm hovered in the 20`s.
22 In 1893...northwest winds were sustained to 36 mph with
gusts to 50 mph.
In 1900...northwest winds sustained to 40 mph with gusts
to 45 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 61 degrees.
In 1910...a cold front caused a remarkably sharp drop in
temperature from 43 degrees at 3:00 AM to only 3 degrees
at 8:30 AM. These were the high and low temperatures for
the day. Early west winds switched to northeast behind
In 1927...west winds were sustained to 42 mph with a measured
maximum velocity to 60 mph.
In 1954...strong and gusty west winds persisted throughout the
day. The highest wind gust recorded at Stapleton Airport
was 58 mph.
In 1960...snowfall totaled 5.9 inches...producing near-blizzard
conditions in snow and blowing snow at Stapleton Airport
where northeast wind gusts to 40 mph reduced visibility
to 1/2 mile.
In 1986...high winds occurred in the foothills. Wind gusts of
65 to 70 mph were reported at Golden Gate Canyon...and a peak
gust of 83 mph was recorded at Echo Lake. Northwest winds
gusted to only 29 mph at Stapleton International Airport.
In 1988...a wind gust to 83 mph was recorded in Boulder with
80 mph clocked at Rollinsville. Northwest winds gusted to
45 mph at Stapleton International Airport.
In 1996...wind gusts to 63 mph were reported in western
Elbert County. Southwest winds gusted to 45 mph at
Denver International Airport.
In 1999...strong post-frontal...bora winds developed over the
foothills and spread over the northeast plains. Peak wind
gusts included: 87 mph at Golden Gate Canyon; 84 mph at
Wondervu; 80 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric
Research Mesa Lab; 75 mph at the Rocky Flats Environmental
Test Facility; 74 mph at Jefferson County Airport near
Broomfield; 72 mph at the Gamow Tower on the University of
Colorado campus in Boulder; and 60 mph at Bennett. West
to northwest winds gusted to 44 mph at Denver International
In 2000...thunder was heard across much of metro Denver.
Thunderstorms over southwest metro Denver produced 1/4
to 1/2 inch diameter hail at Pinehurst Country Club. A
thunderstorm at Denver International Airport produced
wind gusts to 34 mph. This was only the 6th time since
1891 that thunder had been reported in February.
22-23 In 1985...a snowstorm struck the eastern foothills with 8 to
15 inches of new snow. Three to 7 inches of new snow fell
across metro Denver and parts of I-70 were closed at times.
Snowfall totaled only 3.3 inches at Stapleton International
Airport where northeast wind gusts to 29 mph were recorded.
In 1992...a snow storm dumped heavy snow in the Front Range
foothills. Conifer received 12 inches of new snow with 7.5
inches at Aspen Springs. Snow only dusted the plains and
metro Denver...but winds were strong with a gust to 43 mph
from the north at Stapleton International Airport where
snowfall totaled only 0.3 inch. This was the only
measurable snowfall of the month...equaling the record
for the least snowiest February first set in 1970. Rare
thunder for February accompanied the snow during the early
morning hours of the 23rd.
In 1999...strong chinook winds developed on a very localized
scale overnight in and near the foothills of northern
Jefferson and southern Boulder counties. Peak wind reports
included: 82 mph at the Rocky Flats Environmental Test
Facility...80 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric
Research Mesa Lab in Boulder...77 mph near Nederland...and
75 mph atop the Gamow Tower on the University of Colorado
campus in Boulder.
In 2012...a strong upper level jet stream produced high winds
along the Front Range. In Boulder...the strong winds snapped
power poles and toppled trees. As a result...about 7
thousand Xcel Energy customers were without power for
several hours. The high winds overturned a tractor-trailer
on Foothills Highway overpass...north of Valmont Road. The
driver suffered minor injuries. A parked car was totaled
when it was crushed by a fallen tree near the University of
Boulder. The strong winds were also responsible for two
Boulder County wildfires which consumed a total of 65 acres.
Colorado Department of Transportation officials closed U.S.
36 at McCaslin Boulevard in both directions after the wind
caused damage to the pedestrian overpass. Metal siding from
the overpass fell into highway; fortunately there were no
injuries. In total...electrical outages affected 46 thousand
customers along the Front Range. Damage to roofs...siding...
garage doors and fences was also reported. Peak wind gusts
included: 93 mph near Lyons; 88 mph at NCAR Mesa Lab; 85
mph...2 miles southwest of Rocky Flats; 82 mph...5 miles
northwest of Boulder; 81 mph...2 miles north of Longmont...4
miles east-northeast of Nederland...the National Wind
Technology Center and near Wondervu; 80 mph at the junction
of Highways 72 and 93; 79 mph at the Boulder Municipal
Airport; 78 mph...6 miles northwest of Boulder; 77 mph at
Rocky Mountain Municipal Airport; 76 mph atop Berthoud Pass;
75 mph near Aspen Springs; 70 mph at Longmont Municipal
Airport; 64 mph at Erie Municipal Airport. At Denver
International Airport...peak wind gusts of 53 mph on the
22nd and 55 mph on the 23rd were observed.
22-29 In 1960...heavy snowfall of 6.1 inches at Stapleton Airport on
the 22nd and 23rd marked the beginning of a protracted cold
spell which lasted until the end of the month. The cloudy...
cold weather was accompanied by occasional light snow or
flurries and fog. New record low temperatures for the dates
were set on the 24th thru the 29th with the lowest
temperature of 11 degrees below zero on the 28th. The
seven consecutive days of low temperatures of zero or below
had been exceeded in duration only 4 times previously. New
low maximum temperatures for the dates were set on the 23rd...
24th...and the 26th thru the 29th with the lowest maximum
temperature of 8 degrees recorded on the 26th.
23 In 1904...west winds sustained to 42 mph with gusts as high as
60 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 63 degrees.
In 1907...a thunderstorm...relatively rare in February...was
observed over the city. The chance of occurrence is
around once every ten years.
In 1977...while 60 to 100 mph winds produced a huge dust
storm over much of eastern Colorado...only an experimental
windmill at the Rocky Flats nuclear plant was destroyed in
the Denver area. Winds at Rocky Flats were clocked to 90
mph. Northwest winds gusted to 46 mph at Stapleton
In 1986...wind gusts to 79 mph were clocked at Echo Lake in
the foothills west of Denver.
In 1992...a rare February thunderstorm occurred. This was
only the 5th time since 1891 that thunder has been heard
In 1994...periodic high winds occurred over the higher
elevations of the Front Range eastern foothills. The
strongest wind gusts reached 87 mph atop Squaw Mountain
near Idaho Springs. Southwest winds gusted to only 25
mph at Stapleton International Airport.
In 1996...high winds gusting as high as 76 mph were reported
along the Front Range foothills and adjacent urban corridor.
Wind gusts to 70 mph were reported atop Table Mesa near
Boulder and to 63 mph in Broomfield. West winds gusted to
38 mph at Denver International Airport.
In 2012...bands of moderate to heavy snow...associated with a
strong upper level jet...formed over the southern Front
Range Foothills...Palmer Divide and southern Denver suburbs.
Storm totals included: 10 inches...2 miles west-northwest of
Highlands Ranch and Kiowa; 9.5 inches near Castle Rock and
Littleton; 8 inches at Aspen Springs and Marston Reservoir;
7.5 inches at Evergreen and Louviers; 7 inches...5 miles
south-southwest of Arapahoe Park; with 4 to 6 inches
elsewhere. Officially...Denver International Airport
observed 1.9 inches of snowfall.
23-24 In 1935...northwest winds sustained to 37 mph with gusts as
high as 47 mph produced considerable blowing dust behind
a cold front on the 23rd. The dust was dampened by 7.0
inches of snowfall over downtown Denver from the late
evening of the 23rd through the evening of the 24th.
In 1997...heavy snow fell in the foothills. Snowfall totals
included 8 inches at Sunshine Canyon northwest of Boulder...
and 6 inches at Morrison. Snowfall totaled only 2.4 inches
at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport.
East winds gusted to only 22 mph at Denver International
Airport on the 23rd.
23-25 In 1912...a severe winter storm dumped 14.2 inches of snowfall
over downtown Denver. Snow fell continuously from 9:40 AM
on the 23rd until 9:15 PM on the 25th with most of the snow...
9.2 inches...on the 24th. Temperatures were mostly in the
20`s. Northeast winds were sustained to 20 mph on the 24th.
24 In 1908...a duststorm occured in the city from mid-morning
through mid-day. North winds were sustained from 30 to
In 1927...northwest winds were sustained to 42 mph with an
extreme velocity to 46 mph.
In 1924...fog deposited a light coating of glaze...which was
very thin and only accumulated on the windward side of
cold objects. Streets and sidewalks became slippery.
In 1956...a strong cold front produced north wind gusts to 54
mph...but left only 2.0 inches of snowfall at Stapleton
In 1959...heavy snowfall totaled 7.5 inches at Stapleton
Airport...where north-northeast winds gusted to only 18 mph.
In 1968...west-northwest winds gusted to 49 mph at Stapleton
International Airport. The strong chinook winds warmed the
maximum temperature to 61 degrees...the highest temperature
of the month that year.
In 1986...wind gusts to 65 mph were reported at Table Mesa in
Boulder. West winds gusted to only 28 mph at Stapleton
International Airport where the high temperature of 70
degrees equaled the record for the date.
In 1991...the only measurable snowfall for the month totaled
only 0.8 inch at Stapleton International Airport where
north winds gusted to 28 mph. The light snow fell for most
of the day.
In 1994...high winds raked the eastern foothills. Wind speeds
of 70 to 80 mph were common. Wind gusts to 110 mph were
recorded at the National Center for Atmospheric Research
in south Boulder...while in north Boulder winds gusted to
95 mph. The strong winds blew the roof off a building at
Red Rocks Community College in Lakewood...causing the
evacuation of about 1500 people. A semi-trailer and a
delivery truck were overturned. In Lakewood...a home under
construction was destroyed by the winds. There were
numerous reports of vehicles damaged by flying debris...and
many automobile windshields were shattered. West wind gusts
to 47 mph were recorded at Stapleton International Airport.
In 2013...A storm system near the Four Corners region produced
heavy upslope snowfall in and near the Front Range with
blizzard conditions further east as it made its way across
southern Colorado. In the Front Range Mountains and
Foothills storm totals included: 27 inches near Pinecliffe;
24 inches...13 miles northwest of Golden; 20 inches near
Genesee; 17 inches near Conifer; 15 inches near Jamestown;
14 inches...just southwest of Eldorado Springs; 12.5 inches
near Aspen Springs; 12 inches near Evergreen and Ward; 10
inches at Eldora Ski Area; with 8 inches near Gross
Reservoir...Idaho Springs and Nederland. Across the Urban
Corridor storm totals included: 12 inches in Aurora; 11.5
inches near Highlands Ranch; 11 inches in Lakewood; 10.5
inches just north of Longmont and Westminster; 10 inches in
Lone Tree and Thornton; 8.5 inches in Aurora...6 miles
southwest of Denver and near Loveland; 8 inches at Boulder...
Broomfield...and Ralston Reservoir; 7.5 inches near
Frederick...with 7 inches at Commerce City. The storm
prompted the cancellation of 200 flights in and out of
Denver International Airport. Officially...the storm
system produced 9.1 inches of snow at DIA which established
a new daily snowfall record in Denver for the date. Along
and south of the I-70 corridor and east of Denver...the
combination of heavy snow and strong wind produced blizzard
conditions. Storm totals included: 14 inches...10 miles
south-southeast of Buckley AFB...10.5 inches...8 miles
southeast of Watkins; with 6 inches near Byers. Northerly
winds of 25 to 30 mph were common with gusts to 40 mph.
At DIA...a peak wind gust of 32 mph was observed.
25 In 1887...northwest winds were sustained to 47 mph.
In 1904...the low temperature cooled to only 49 degrees...the
all-time record high minimum temperature for February.
In 1957...north winds gusted to 49 mph at Stapleton Airport.
In 1998...a bora wind storm developed in the Front Range
foothills and adjacent plains as winds gusted between 60
and 75 mph. Peak wind gusts during the storm included:
75 mph atop Blue Mountain near Wondervu...60 mph in south
Boulder and at Jefferson County Airport near Broomfield.
West winds gusted to 32 mph at Denver International Airport.
In 2000...high winds occurred in and near the foothills.
Winds gusted to 84 mph at the Rocky Flats Environmental
Test Facility south of Boulder and to 71 mph atop Niwot
Ridge in the mountains west of Boulder. West winds gusted
to only 36 mph at Denver International Airport.
25-26 In 1971...a wind gust to 100 mph was recorded in Boulder at
the National Center for Atmospheric Research. The cold
west winds gusted to 53 mph in downtown Boulder. No damage
was reported. Northwest winds gusted to 31 mph on the
25th and to 38 mph on the 26th at Stapleton International
In 1984...a heavy snow storm left 1 to 2 feet of new snow in
the foothills west of Denver. I-70 was closed...stranding
skiers returning from the mountains. Most had to spend
several hours in Idaho Springs. The snow spread over metro
Denver with 9 inches at Littleton...Castle Rock...and Boulder
and up to 5 inches in Aurora and Denver. Snowfall totaled
only 3.6 inches at Stapleton International Airport where
north winds gusted to 31 mph.