Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Denver/Boulder, CO
NOUS45 KBOU 180045
Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Denver/Boulder CO
645 PM MDT SAT SEP 17 2016
...This week in metro Denver weather history...
15-19 In 1906...rain on 5 consecutive days totaled 1.61 inches.
A thunderstorm occurred on the 17th. High temperatures
ranged from 48 degrees on the 16th to 65 degrees on the
15th. Low temperatures were in the lower to mid 40`s.
16-19 In 1971...a record breaking early fall snow storm caused
extensive damage to trees and utility lines. The heavy wet
snow occurred with little wind...but caused record breaking
cold temperatures for so early in the season. Snowfall
totaled 15.6 inches at Stapleton International Airport
with most of the snowfall...12.0 inches...occurring on the
17th. This was the heaviest first snow of the season.
The maximum snow depth on the ground was 13 inches.
Record low temperatures were set on three consecutive days:
31 degrees on the 17th...23 degrees on the 18th...and 20
degrees on the 19th...which was also a new all-time record
minimum for the month at that time. Record low maximum
temperatures were set on 4 consecutive days: 48 degrees
on the 16th...35 degrees on the 17th...40 degrees on the 18th...
and 42 degrees on the 19th.
18 In 1901...northeast winds were sustained to 42 mph with gusts
to 50 mph behind an apparent cold front.
In 1948...the low temperature cooled to only 69 degrees...the
all-time record high minimum for the month.
In 1988...a strong cold front blasted metro Denver with
high winds. Gusts reached 82 mph in Longmont and 81
mph at Jefferson County Airport near Broomfield where
the winds flipped over and destroyed a small airplane.
Wind gusts to 60 mph were recorded in Boulder and Wheat
Ridge. West wind gusts to 54 mph were clocked at Stapleton
International Airport. The strong winds downed trees and
power lines and damaged homes and cars. A Longmont man was
slightly injured...when a tree fell on top of his car.
In 1990...a slow moving thunderstorm over southwest metro
Denver spawned an ominous looking funnel cloud near the
intersection of Sheridan Blvd. and U.S. Highway 285. The
funnel cloud nearly touched down a few times before lifting
back into the main cloud. No damage was reported. Pea to
marble size hail and 3/4 inch of rain fell over central and
northeast Denver. Numerous streets and underpasses became
flooded on Denver`s south side when the heavy runoff
backed up storm sewers. Thunderstorm rainfall totaled
1.02 inches at Stapleton International Airport.
In 1993...a severe thunderstorm rolled through southeast metro
Denver. Dime size hail was reported in many areas.
Straight-line winds from the thunderstorm...measured by a
weather spotter at 70 mph...tore the roof off 6 apartments
of an apartment complex in Aurora. Heavy rain which
accompanied the winds caused major damage to the
apartments as well as the contents. Many trees...fences...
and power poles were knocked down by the strong winds.
Heavy rain flooded roadways in Denver and Aurora.
Thunderstorm rainfall totaled 1.08 inches and north winds
gusted to 44 mph at Stapleton International Airport where
the visibility was briefly reduced to as low as 1/4 mile
in heavy rain.
In 1996...a late summer snowstorm struck the northern
mountains and Front Range eastern foothills. Golden
Gate Canyon received 6 inches of new snow with 5 inches
reported at both Nederland and Blackhawk. Thunderstorms
produced heavy rain across metro Denver...which was mixed
with snow by late evening. Rainfall totaled 0.83 inch
at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport
and 1.22 inches at Denver International Airport where
northwest winds gusted to 39 mph.
18-19 In 1955...heavy rains caused flash flooding across portions of
metro Denver. Rainfall totaled 1.71 inches at Stapleton
19 In 1955...hail stones to 2 1/2 inches in diameter were
reported north of Denver. The large stones broke many
In 1963...hail to 3/4 inch in diameter fell in Westminster.
In 1983...an unusually strong cold front roared through
metro Denver during the afternoon hours. At Stapleton
International Airport...the temperature dropped 51 degrees...
from a sunny 86 degrees to a snowy 35 degrees...in just 7
hours. Strong winds and a wall of blowing dust followed
the front. Northeast winds gusting to 36 mph briefly
reduced the surface visibility to 1 mile in blowing dust
at Stapleton International Airport where only a trace of
snow fell later.
In 1996...high winds gusting to 84 mph were measured at
Golden Gate Canyon in the foothills west of Denver.
West winds gusted to only 25 mph at Denver International
20 In 1921...an apparent bora produced northwest winds sustained
to 44 mph with gusts to 64 mph.
In 1955...hail stones 1/2 to 3/4 inch in diameter were
reported across parts of the City of Denver.
In 1992...weather observers at Buckley Air National Guard Base
sighted two tornados southeast of the base. The tornados
were short-lived and caused no injuries or damage.
20-21 In 1963...heavy rain and hail caused local flooding in
southeast Denver. Thunderstorm rainfall was only
0.60 inch at Stapleton Airport on the 20th.
In 1983...the cold front on the 19th brought an unusually cold
air mass into metro Denver for so early in the season. The
temperature dipped to a daily record minimum of 28 degrees
on both days.
In 1995...a vigorous late summer storm brought the season`s
first heavy snow to portions of metro Denver. Millions
of trees were damaged and power lines downed as 4 to 8
inches of heavy wet snow settled on fully leafed trees in
the Boulder and Denver areas. Branches snapped and trees
split under the weight of heavy snow...downing power lines.
Firefighters responded to numerous transformer fires.
Around 100 thousand people were left without electricity
in Boulder and Denver areas alone. It took over a week
to fully restore power to some areas. Insurance claims
were estimated to be around 6 million dollars to homes
in metro Denver and about 500 thousand dollars in damage
to automobiles. It was estimated that about 80 percent
of 125 million dollars worth of city owned trees in Denver
were damaged. Snowfall totaled 7.4 inches at the site of
the former Stapleton International Airport where the
greatest depth of snow on the ground was only 4 inches
due to melting. Temperature records were set on the
21st when the thermometer dipped to a record low reading
of 27 degrees and climbed to a high of only 36 degrees...
setting a record low maximum for the date. North winds
gusted to 29 mph at Denver International Airport on the
20-22 In 1902...a thunderstorm on the 20th...in advance of an
apparent cold front...produced rain...hail...and northwest
winds to 40 mph with gusts to 48 mph. Widespread rain
developed behind the cold front and totaled 3.21 inches
from the evening of the 20th through the early afternoon
of the 22nd. The 2.70 inches of precipitation recorded
from 800 PM on the 20th to 800 PM on the 21st is the
greatest 24 hour precipitation ever recorded in the
month of September. The temperature dipped from a high
of 80 degrees on the 20th to a high of only 51 degrees
on the 21st.
21 In 1951...4.2 inches of snow fell at Stapleton Airport...
where northeast winds gusted to 27 mph. This was the
first snowfall of the season in Denver...marking the end
of the second shortest snow-free period on record...109
days...from June 4th through September 20th. A trace of
snow fell on June 3rd.
In 1984...thunderstorm winds gusted to 56 mph at Stapleton
In 1992...the only precipitation of the month at Stapleton
International Airport...0.01 inch of rain...fell from a
brief shower around daybreak.
In 2009...an early season storm brought moderate to heavy
snow to the foothills of Clear Creek...Jefferson and Park
Counties...west and southwest of Denver. A trained
spotter...4 miles west-northwest of Conifer...was the big
winner with 14 inches of snow. Storm totals elsewhere
generally ranged from 5 to 10 inches.
21-22 In 1870...strong winds occurred in the foothills and in
Boulder and Denver.
In 1895...rain changed to snow overnight and totaled 11.4
inches in downtown Denver. This was the first snowfall
of the season and the second heaviest first snowfall of
the season on record. North winds were sustained to 27
mph with gusts to 30 mph on the 21st.
22 In 1913...a thunderstorm produced northwest winds sustained
to 40 mph with gusts to 44 mph.
In 1946...a trace of snow fell in downtown Denver. This
marked the start of the longest snow season on record...
263 days through June 11...1947...when a trace of snow
23 In 1873...north to northwest winds blowing almost a gale
spread clouds of dust and sand into the city during the
afternoon and evening. From the roof of the weather
observer`s building...houses a few hundred yards away were
not visible and not even the sky could be seen through the
clouds of sand. The wind reached sustained speeds of 35
mph...but only 28 mph was registered for any one hour.
In 1977...wind gusts from 50 to 80 mph were reported along the
foothills. A northwest wind gust to 53 mph was recorded at
Stapleton International Airport.
23-24 In 2000...the first snowstorm of the season brought heavy
snow to areas in and near the foothills. While the
heaviest snow fell north of metro Denver...6 inches were
measured in Boulder...4 inches at both Castle Rock and
Morrison...but only 0.2 inch at the site of the former
Stapleton International Airport where most of the
precipitation fell as rain. At Denver International
Airport where drizzle and rain fell on the 23rd...
snowfall during the early morning of the 24th was
estimated at 2.1 inches due to melting. The foothills
west of Denver received more snow with 10 inches measured
at Conifer...9 inches 11 miles southwest of Morrison...
8 inches atop Crow Hill...7 inches at Chief Hosa...and
5 inches at Ralston Reservoir.
24 In 1901...northwest winds were sustained to 50 mph with
gusts as high as 57 mph in the city.
In 1932...thunderstorm rainfall of only 0.11 inch was the
only measurable precipitation for the month that year
in the city.
In 1986...a very strong wind storm roared across metro
Denver. Boulder was hit hardest. Winds peaked to 131 mph
at the National Center for Atmospheric Research. This is
thought to be the highest wind gust ever recorded in Boulder
during September. A wind gust to 118 mph was clocked on
Davidson Mesa and to 92 mph near Niwot. Gusts of 70 to 80
mph were common over all of Boulder where an estimated 70
to 90 large trees were uprooted. About a dozen of them hit
cars. Two walls of a building under construction were
toppled and solar panels were blown off a house. Traffic
lights and power lines were downed. Damage to power
equipment alone was estimated at 100 thousand dollars.
Wind gusts to 87 mph at Jefferson County Airport damaged
two planes. A woman was seriously injured in Boulder.
She suffered a fractured skull when struck by a falling
tree limb. Trees were also downed in Louisville and
Lafayette. West wind gusts to 45 mph were recorded at
Stapleton International Airport.