Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Denver/Boulder, CO
NOUS45 KBOU 050859
Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Denver/Boulder CO
259 AM MDT THU MAY 5 2016
...Today in metro Denver weather history...
1-5 In 1898...snowfall totaled 15.5 inches in downtown Denver.
Most of the snow...6.2 inches...fell on the 3rd. Most of
the snow melted as it fell. The greatest snow depth on
the ground was only 2.5 inches on the 3rd at 8:00 PM.
This was the only snowfall during the month. Northeast
winds were sustained to 22 mph on the 1st.
2-5 In 2001...a very slow moving Pacific storm system became parked
near the Four Corners region...which allowed heavy snow to
develop above 6500 feet in the foothills with a mix of rain
and snow over lower elevations of metro Denver. Snowfall
totals included: 21 inches atop Crow Hill and at Idaho
Springs; 19 inches near Blackhawk; and 18 inches in Coal
Creek Canyon...Genesee...and 11 miles southwest of Morrison.
Snowfall totaled 6.2 inches at the site of the former
Stapleton International Airport. Precipitation (rain and
melted snow) totaled 2.09 inches at Denver International
Airport where north winds gusted to 30 mph on the 2nd.
3-5 In 1908...rain changed to snow on the evening of the 3rd
and continued through the early evening of the 5th.
Snowfall totaled 10.0 inches over downtown Denver.
This was the last measurable snow of the season.
Precipitation totaled 1.51 inches. North winds were
sustained to 23 mph on the 3rd...33 mph on the 4th...and
21 mph on the 5th. Three temperature records were set.
High temperatures of 30 degrees on the 4th and 38 degrees
on the 5th were record low maximum temperatures for the
dates. The reading on the 4th was also the all-time
record low maximum for the month of May.
In 2007...a slow moving Pacific storm system...from the
Desert Southwest...brought a period of unsettled weather
to the region. During the 3-day period...locally heavy
snow was reported over parts of the Front Range Foothills.
Storm totals included: 15 inches near Conifer...14.5
inches west of Jamestown...13.5 inches; 6 miles southwest
of Evergreen...and 12.5 inches at Pine Junction. Severe
thunderstorms...producing large hail...up to one inch in
diameter were observed in the vicinity of Boulder and
Hudson. Lightning struck a residence in Jefferson County.
The roof was hit...causing the attic to catch fire.
At Denver International Airport...lightning struck a
United Airlines jet as it was pushing away from
the gate. The passengers were taken off the jet and put
on another plane.
4-5 In 1986...high winds buffeted the foothills. Wind speeds of
60 to 75 mph were recorded in Boulder. At Stapleton
International Airport...west winds gusted to 45 mph on the
4th and to 40 mph on the 5th.
In 2000...a brief warm spell resulted in setting two daily
high temperature records. The temperature climbed to
highs of 87 degrees on the 4th and 89 degrees on the 5th.
4-8 In 1969...heavy rains caused flooding on Boulder Creek
in Boulder...which resulted in one death on the 7th.
Flooding also occurred on Bear Creek in Sheridan and
on the South Platte River in Denver. Rain over most
of the eastern foothills started late on the 4th and
continued with only brief interruptions in many areas
until the morning of the 8th. Very high rates of
rainfall occurred on the 6th and 7th with the greatest
intensities in a band along the foothills from about 25
miles southwest of Denver northward to Estes Park. Storm
totals by both official and unofficial measurements
exceeded 10 inches over much of this area and were over 12
inches in some localities. Heavy snow fell in the higher
mountains and in the foothills later in the period. The
saturation of the soil resulted in numerous rock and land
slides...and the heavy run-off caused severe damage along
many streams and flooding on the South Platte River. Many
foothill communities were isolated as highways were blocked
and communications disrupted. Roads were severely damaged
over a wide area...and a large number of bridges washed out.
Many roads were closed due to the danger from falling
rocks. A building in Georgetown collapsed from the weight
of heavy wet snow. In Boulder...a man drowned when caught
by the flooding waters of Boulder Creek...and a patrolman was
injured. Rainfall totaled 7.60 inches in Boulder with
9.34 inches recorded at the Public Service Company electric
plant in Boulder Canyon. In Morrison...rainfall totaled
11.27 inches in 4 days. Heavy rainfall totaled 4.68 inches
at Stapleton International Airport over 3 days from the 5th
through the 7th. Rainfall of 3.14 inches was recorded in 24
hours on the 6th and 7th. Downstream flooding continued
along the South Platte River until the 12th when the flood
crest reached the Nebraska line.
5 In 1903...apparent post-frontal northeast winds were sustained
to 48 mph with gusts to 60 mph.
In 1950...a northwest wind gust to 52 mph was recorded at
In 1969...a funnel cloud was observed for 2 to 3 minutes just
north of Parker. Two other funnel clouds were sighted in
the same area. The public sighted a tornado 15 miles
east of Stapleton International Airport. No damage was
In 2012...severe thunderstorms produced damaging hail ranging
in size from quarters to golfballs in metro Denver
including: Aurora...Centenniel...Cherry Creek...Englewood...
and southeast Denver. Aurora was hit the hardest...with
extensive property damage reported to homes and automobiles.
5-6 In 1907...rain changed to snow on the 5th...continued through
the night...and totaled 3.50 inches. Northeast winds were
sustained to 15 mph on the 5th.
In 1917...post-frontal rain changed to heavy snow and totaled
12.5 inches over downtown Denver. Most of the snow...
12.0 inches...fell on the 5th and this was the greatest
24-hour snowfall ever measured during the month of May.
This was also the only measurable snow of the month that
year. Low temperatures of 27 degrees on the 5th and 23
degrees on the 6th were record minimums for the dates.
High temperatures on both days were in the lower 40`s.
Southeast winds were sustained to 24 mph with an extreme
velocity to 26 mph.
In 1964...high winds gusted to 54 mph in Boulder and to 80 mph
at Jefferson County Airport near Broomfield. Wind gusts of
50 to 60 mph were common over all of eastern Colorado.
Buildings...power lines...trees...and vehicles were damaged by
the wind. South-southwest wind gusts to 54 mph caused some
blowing dust at Stapleton International Airport where the
visibility was briefly reduced to 2 miles.
In 1973...a heavy driving rain storm with embedded
thunderstorms...produced 1 to 5 inches of rain and caused
local flash flooding along the east slopes of the Front
Range. The greatest flash flooding occurred in metro
Denver where rainfall totaled 3.56 inches at Stapleton
International Airport. Flooding in metro Denver occurred
on Clear Creek and the South Platte River...already swollen
from heavy snowmelt. Numerous basements were flooded...
roads and streets were washed out...a bridge was demolished...
and miscellaneous other damage was reported. North winds
gusted to 39 mph at Stapleton International Airport during
the storm. The storm produced major downstream flooding
along the South Platte River all the way to the Nebraska
border during the next two weeks. One person died and
total damage was estimated at around 120 million dollars.
In 1978...heavy wet snow of around 24 inches collapsed an
office and hotel building in Boulder. Many cars were
abandoned in the city. Denver received 14 inches of
heavy wet snow with Evergreen and Golden reporting 12
inches. Snowfall totaled 12.4 inches at Stapleton
International Airport with a total accumulation of snow
on the ground of 8 inches due to melting. Southeast winds
gusted to 23 mph on the 5th. Temperatures both days
remained in the lower to mid 30`s.