Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Denver/Boulder, CO

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Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Denver/Boulder CO
259 AM MST MON DEC 5 2016

...Today in metro Denver weather history...

1-5   In 1913...the 1st marked the start of the heaviest 5-day
        total snowfall in the city`s history.  During this period
        snowfall totaled 45.7 inches.  Starting on the 1st...snow
        fell intermittently for 3 days and accumulated a little
        over 8 inches.  On the 4th and 5th...an additional 37.4
        inches of snow fell.  At Georgetown in the foothills west
        of Denver even more snow fell...86 inches over the 5 days
        with the most...63 inches...on the 4th.  In Colorado...snowfall
        was heavy along the eastern slopes of the mountains from the
        Palmer Divide north.  High winds during the storm caused
        heavy drifting...which blocked all transportation.  Snow
        cover of an inch or more from the storm persisted for
        60 consecutive days from the 1st through January 29...1914.
        Additional snowfall in December and January prolonged the
        number of days.  This is the third longest period of snow
        cover on record in the city.
2-17  In 1939...more than 2 weeks of unseasonably warm weather
        made the month the 3rd warmest on record.  Seven daily
        temperature records were set...including the all time
        record high temperature for the month of 79 degrees on
        the 5th.  Daytime highs were balmy with 14 days in the
        60`s and 70`s.  Low temperatures dipped to freezing or
        below on only 5 days.  The period was dry with only a
        trace of snow on the 12th.
3-15  In 1972...a protracted cold spell held an icy grip on metro
        Denver when maximum temperatures never reached above
        freezing for 10 consecutive days from the 3rd through
        the 12th and minimum temperatures dipped below zero on
        eleven consecutive days from the 5th through the 15th.
        Daily low temperature records were set with 15 degrees
        below zero on the 5th...17 degrees below zero on the 6th...
        and 18 degrees below zero on the 10th.  Daily record low
        maximum readings were set with 3 degrees on the 6th and
        6 degrees on the 9th.  The very cold temperatures were
        caused by 3 to 5 inches of snow cover and a Canadian air
        mass.
4-5   In 1912...5.2 inches of post-frontal snow fell in downtown
        Denver.  Most of the snow fell on the 4th when northeast
        winds were sustained to 42 mph with gusts to 46 mph.
      In 1913...a major winter storm produced heavy snowfall and
        blizzard conditions in the city.  The snow fell continuously
        for 40 consecutive hours from 4:30 AM on the 4th until just
        before midnight on the 5th and totaled 37.6 inches.  The
        greatest accumulation on the ground was 32.6 inches at 6:00
        PM on the 5th.  Strong north winds accompanied the storm
        with sustained speeds of 30 mph or more for more than 25
        hours.  The highest sustained wind velocity was 44 mph
        during the afternoon of the 5th.  Winds gusted to 46 mph
        on the 4th and to 47 mph on the 5th.  The winds piled the
        snow into 4-and 5-foot drifts.  By noon on the 4th traffic
        was interrupted...and by evening the heavy wet snow had
        blocked most streets and highways.  Street cars stalled
        when streets became blocked.  Automobiles and other
        conveyances were abandoned in the streets.  By the 5th...
        the blockage extended to steam railroads.  Flat roofed
        buildings collapsed...including the roof of the Calvary
        Baptist Church.  Many downtown workers were unable to make
        it home on the night of the 4th and filled downtown hotels
        to overflowing.  Some enjoyed the festive mood of the
        occasion and partied through the night.  The City
        Auditorium...jail...and several movie houses served as
        shelters for hundreds of people.  The snow was remarkably
        moist for this time of year with a total water content of
        3.44 inches.  Temperatures during the storm were between
        25 and 34 degrees.  Cold weather followed the storm and
        snow remained on the ground for a long time.  On some street
        car lines...it took 6 to 7 days before the right of way could
        be cleared.  The foothills measured even more snow from the
        storm.  At Georgetown...the 2 day snowfall totaled 71 inches.
        The 2.12 inches of precipitation measured on the 4th is the
        greatest calendar day precipitation ever recorded during the
        month of December in Denver.  The 2.29 inches of
        precipitation measured from the 4th into the 5th is the
        greatest 24 hour precipitation ever recorded in the city
        during December.
      In 1972...only 4.5 inches of snow fell at Stapleton
        International Airport...but high winds on the evening of
        the 4th caused blizzard conditions over the plains east of
        Denver.  A 21-year-old University of Colorado student
        caught in the storm while cross country skiing west of
        Boulder froze to death.  North winds gusted to 32 mph
        at Stapleton International Airport.
      In 1979...the Front Range was hit by strong chinook winds.
        The Boulder area was hardest hit with winds gusting to
        119 mph at Rocky Flats and 92 mph in the city.  A wind
        gust to 104 mph was recorded at Wondervu.  Damage was
        widespread...amounting to 1.2 million dollars mainly around
        Boulder.  Roofs were blown off several buildings and homes...
        hundreds of windows were broken...and many cars were damaged
        by flying debris.  Small planes were severely damaged at
        3 airports in the area.  West winds gusted to 55 mph at
        Stapleton International Airport on the 5th.
      In 1996...persistent westerly flow aloft produced more high
        winds in and near the Front Range foothills.  Several
        locations reported hurricane force winds with peak gusts
        of 100 to 120 mph.  The high winds downed trees and power
        lines...leaving 700 residents without power for nearly 4
        hours in the communities of Beaver Brook...Blue Valley...
        Conifer...Evergreen...and Floyd Hill.  A wall of a building
        under construction in Lafayette was toppled...a semi-truck
        was blown over near the Boulder turnpike damaging a
        concrete barrier...and a 60-foot tree crushed a parked
        pick-up truck at a Denver residence.  High wind gusts
        included:  an estimated 120 mph at Blackhawk...115 mph at
        Aspen Springs...100 mph at the Eldora Ski Resort...75 mph
        atop Shanahan Ridge near Boulder...74 mph near Conifer...and
        71 mph at the Rocky Flats Environmental Test Facility.
        At Denver International Airport...west winds gusted to 51
        mph on the 4th and to only 38 mph on the 5th.
4-6   In 1960...heavy snowfall totaled 12.0 inches over the 3 days
        with 5.1 inches on the 4th...5.2 inches on the 5th...and
        1.7 inches on the 6th.  Rain changed to snow early on the
        4th and ended by early afternoon.  Snow started again early
        on the 5th and continued through midday on the 6th.  West
        northwest winds gusted to 30 mph on the 4th.  Post cold
        frontal temperatures cooled from a high of 38 degrees on
        the 4th to a low of 7 degrees below zero on the 6th.
5     In 1897...west chinook winds sustained to 48 mph with gusts
        to 60 mph warmed the temperature to a high of 60 degrees.
      In 1906...only a trace of snow fell in downtown Denver.
        This...along with a trace of snow on both the 28th and 29th...
        was the only snow of the month...ranking the month the
        second least snowiest December on record.
      In 1939...the highest temperature ever recorded in December...
        79 degrees...occurred.
      In 1979...strong chinook winds gusted to 55 mph at Stapleton
        International Airport.
      In 1993...strong winds in and near the foothills swept across
        metro Denver.  Wind gusts to 71 mph were recorded atop
        Squaw Mountain and 68 mph at Rollinsville.  Wind gusts to
        69 mph were observed at Jefferson County Airport near
        Broomfield...and to 68 mph on Table Mesa in southwest
        Boulder.  Northwest wind gusts to 44 mph were recorded at
        Stapleton International Airport.
      In 2002...only a trace of snow fell at the site of the former
        Stapleton International Airport.  This...along with the trace
        of snow on the 18th...was the only snow of the month...ranking
        the month the 2nd least snowiest on record.
      In 2005...high winds in Boulder broke windows...damaged roofs...
        and produced power outages that left around 10 thousand
        people without electricity.  In the Golden area along
        C-470...I-70...and the McIntyre Parkway...seven tractor
        trailers were overturned by strong cross-winds.  Peak
        wind gusts included:  98 mph near Eldorado Springs...90 mph
        at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder...
        85 mph near Evergreen...83 mph at Jefferson County Airport
        near Broomfield...80 mph near Golden...and 76 mph near
        Longmont.  West to northwest winds gusted to 39 mph at
        Denver International Airport.
5-6   In 1883...a major snow storm hit the city.  Heavy snow fell
        from 10:00 AM on the 5th to 7:30 AM on the 6th.  The amount
        of snowfall was not recorded...but precipitation from melted
        snow totaled 1.75 inches...which would give an estimated
        snowfall of nearly 18 inches.  Temperatures during the
        storm were in the 30`s...so some of the snow may have melted
        as it fell.  However...railroads were blocked and telegraph
        lines were downed in all directions.  Telephone wires and
        poles were nearly all broken down.  The company manager
        estimated the damage at 30 thousand dollars.  Northeast
        winds were sustained to 24 mph in the city.
      In 1892...heavy snow totaled 6.2 inches in downtown Denver.
        Most of the snow...6.0 inches...fell on the 6th.
      In 2001...high winds developed in the foothills northwest of
        Denver.  Winds gusted to 74 mph at Aspen Springs.  West-
        northwest winds gusted to 35 mph at Denver International
        Airport...where the temperature warmed to a high of 55
        degrees on the 6th.
5-7   In 1978...a major storm dumped heavy snow across metro Denver.
        At Stapleton International Airport...snowfall totaled 8.5
        inches...northeast winds gusted to 46 mph...and temperatures
        plunged from a high of 49 degrees on the 5th to a low of
        only 6 degrees on the 6th.  Maximum temperature of 6 degrees
        on the 7th was a new daily record low maximum reading.  Most
        of the snow...6.7 inches...fell on the 5th.
5-8   In 1983...high winds occurred in and near the foothills each
        day.  Wind gusts to 63 mph were registered in Golden Gate
        Canyon on the evening of the 5th.  On the evening of the
        6th...winds knocked down trees...snapped power lines...and blew
        out windows across metro Denver.  Gusts were clocked to 102
        mph in southwest metro Denver...while wind gusts to 38 mph
        were recorded at Stapleton International Airport.  On the
        7th...winds overturned a tractor trailer near Castle Rock.
        After midnight on the 8th...gusts to 97 mph were reported in
        southeast Boulder.  Wind speeds of 60 to 70 mph were
        reported in other parts of metro Denver.

$$


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