Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Denver/Boulder, CO
NOUS45 KBOU 010045
Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Denver/Boulder CO
645 PM MDT SAT APR 30 2016
...This week in metro Denver weather history...
29-2 In 1954...a major storm dumped 10.1 inches of snowfall at
Stapleton Airport. Most of the snow...7.5 inches...fell on
the 29th and 30th. The maximum snow depth on the ground
was 5 inches on the 30th due to melting. No strong winds
accompanied the storm.
30-1 In 1980...to the west of Denver...heavy rain changing to snow
buried the foothills above 7 thousand feet in 4 to 8 inches
of snow. Precipitation in the foothills ranged from 1 to 3
inches...which caused some local flooding. Rain fell at
lower elevations. Rainfall at Stapleton International
Airport totaled 1.05 inches from the storm.
1 In 1902...northwest winds were sustained to 68 mph with
gusts as high as 74 mph in the city during the early
morning. The apparent very strong chinook winds warmed
the temperature to a high of 78 degrees.
In 1912...south winds were sustained to 42 mph with gusts
as high as 58 mph. South to southwest winds were strong
In 1935...a moderate duststorm blew into the city at around
2:00 PM on northwest winds sustained to 17 mph with gusts
to 19 mph. Later in the afternoon...the dust receded to
the east in advance of a rainstorm from the west.
In 1988...very strong winds behind a vigorous cold front
produced a blinding dust storm that closed I-70 east of
Denver. Northeast winds over metro Denver peaked to 45
mph at Stapleton International Airport...but only kicked
up some blowing dust. The temperature plunged from a
high of 76 degrees at midday to 36 degrees at midnight as
light rain changed to light snow.
In 1991...3/4 inch diameter hail fell at Standley Lake in
northwest metro Denver.
In 1999...heavy snow developed in the foothills above
7 thousand feet elevation. Snow totals included:
10 inches at Rollinsville...7 inches near Conifer...and
6 inches atop Crow Hill. Rain fell across metro Denver.
1-2 In 1903...post-frontal rain changed to light snow overnight...
but totaled only 2.0 inches. This was the last snow of
the season. Northeast winds were sustained to 45 mph
with gusts to 48 mph on the 1st.
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 In 1874...strong winds upset two railroad passenger coaches
near Georgetown. The baggage was retrieved and placed in
a heavy...large wagon. The passengers then seated
themselves on top of the baggage. Another strong gust
of wind upset the wagon. The driver`s shoulder was
dislocated...and a passenger`s leg was badly injured.
In Denver...northwest winds increased and blew in gusts
and heavy winds were observed on the ridge tops. On
the Kansas Pacific R.R. east of Denver...the wind was so
strong that it blew the train back several lengths...which
caused the train to be about 7 hours late arriving in
In 1901...south winds were sustained to 50 mph with gusts to
60 mph from an apparent thunderstorm with hail.
In 1944...snowfall of 8.3 inches was accompanied by a
thunderstorm. This was the last snowfall of the season
and the only snow of the month. Northwest winds were
sustained to 25 mph.
In 1955...southwest winds at speeds of 37 mph with gusts as
high as 58 mph caused some blowing dust at Stapleton
In 1983...1 inch diameter hail fell a few miles south of
In 1984...3/4 inch diameter hail fell in Northglenn.
In 1988...I-70 east of Denver was closed for the second
straight day...this time due to snow and blowing snow
producing up to 2 foot drifts. While only 2 to 4 inches
of snow fell across metro Denver...Strasburg...just east of
Denver...received a foot of snow. North winds peaked to
51 mph at Stapleton International Airport where snowfall
totaled only 1.3 inches.
In 1995...lightning struck a house in Westminster sparking an
2-3 In 1979...heavy rain changed to snow on the 2nd. Snowfall
totaled 3.9 inches at Stapleton International Airport...
where northwest winds gusted to 26 mph. The greatest
depth of snow on the ground was only 1 inch at midday on
the 2nd due to melting. Total precipitation for the 2
days was 1.65 inches.
2-4 In 1987...a slow moving storm brought rain...wind...and snow
to metro Denver. Rainfall totaled 1.04 inches at
Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted
to 48 mph on the 3rd. The foothills received 5 to 10 inches
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 In 1898...heavy snowfall of 6.2 inches fell over downtown
Denver. Most of the snow melted as it fell. The greatest
snow depth on the ground was 2.5 inches during the evening.
In 1907...the all-time lowest recorded temperature in the
month of May...19 degrees...occurred.
In 1925...an apparent microburst produced sustained northeast
winds to 44 mph with gusts to 52 mph. Rainfall was only
0.01 inch in downtown Denver.
In 1981...lightning struck 9 golfers at the South Suburban
Golf Course. None were injured seriously.
In 1983...hail 1 1/2 inches in diameter fell at Green
Mountain west of Lakewood...with 3/4 inch stones reported
In 1986...a thunderstorm wind gust to 51 mph was recorded at
Stapleton International Airport.
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 In 1893...northwest winds were sustained to 42 mph.
In 1971...a funnel cloud was sighted 10 miles southwest
of Boulder. Hail stones to 1 inch in diameter fell in
southeast Denver...but caused only minor damage.
In 2006...a severe thunderstorm produced hail to 1.00 inch
in diameter in Aurora near Cherry Creek Reservoir.
In 2010...high winds downed trees and power lines across
parts of the Front Range Foothills and Urban Corridor.
Downed power lines sparked a 12-acre wildfire near
Conifer. In Boulder...Longmont and Louisville...the wind
damaged roofs and broke windows and skylights. Peak
wind gusts included: 75 mph in northwest Longmont...71 mph
at the National Wind Technology Center and 4 miles south-
southwest of Superior...61 mph at Broomfield and 56 mph in
Erie. At Denver International Airport...a peak wind gust
to 46 mph was observed.
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.
6 In 1876...heavy snow fell during the night and ended during
the morning...but no amount was recorded. Light hail fell
briefly during the late afternoon. Precipitation for the
day totaled 1.05 inch which would give an estimated snowfall
of nearly 11 inches had all of the precipitation been snow.
In 1889...northwest winds were sustained to 45 mph in the city.
In 1893...heavy snow of 8.9 inches fell over downtown Denver.
Once on the ground...the snow melted rapidly. This was the
only snow of the month. Northwest winds were sustained to
In 1904...west winds were sustained to 45 mph with an extreme
velocity to 46 mph.
In 1914...an apparent dry microburst produced sustained north
winds to 44 mph with gusts as high as 50 mph.
In 1920...a thunderstorm produced hail and 0.55 inch of rain.
The hail of unknown size covered the ground.
In 1921...thunderstorm winds were sustained to 42 mph with
gusts to 44 mph. Rainfall was only 0.17 inch.
In 1936...a light to moderate duststorm moved in from the
east on southeast winds and lasted most of the day. The
dust reduced the visibility to two miles at times. Winds
from the northwest sustained to 21 mph swept the dust out
of the city during the late afternoon.
In 1966...a funnel cloud was sighted for 7 minutes to the
southwest of Stapleton International Airport. The funnel
appeared to be picking up dust from the ground...but was
too distant to tell. No damage was reported.
In 1968...a thunderstorm wind gust to 53 mph was recorded at
Stapleton International Airport.
In 1988...high winds raked the state. Wind gusts ranged from
60 to 80 mph in Boulder...Aurora...and at Centennial Airport.
South-southwest winds to 53 mph were recorded at Stapleton
International Airport. Across metro Denver...the strong
winds knocked windows out of buildings...downed power poles
and wires and some fences...unroofed several buildings...and
In 1997...strong winds from a dry microburst blew an empty
18-wheeler on its side in the northbound lane of I-25
north of Denver near the Brighton exit. There were no
injuries. West winds gusted to 46 mph at Denver
6-7 In 1873...snowfall totaled 8.9 inches in downtown Denver.
Most of the snow fell on the 6th.
7 In 1904...west winds were sustained to 48 mph with gusts to
60 mph. A shower produced 0.16 inch of rain.
In 1953...a microburst caused a brief wind gust to 58 mph at
In 1958...3/4 inch diameter hail fell over south metro Denver...
10 miles southwest of Stapleton Airport.
In 1977...baseball size hail damaged windows in Wheat Ridge.
Hail was 4 inches deep on the ground in Arvada. Hail 3/4
to 1 inch diameter fell in Westminster and Kittredge.
In 1990...a fast moving cold front produced wind gusts of 40
to 60 mph. Brighton reported a wind gust to 57 mph...while
north wind gusts to 44 mph were measured at Stapleton
In 1995...severe thunderstorms struck Aurora. Hail piled 4 to
5 inches deep in the vicinity of Quincy Reservoir in south
Aurora. Lightning struck an Aurora Police communications
tower causing significant malfunction to the primary
system. Minor damage was sustained when lightning struck
an apartment building. Hail...up to 1 1/4 inches in
diameter...while soft and slushy...accumulated up to 6 inches
deep in 15 minutes. Many streets were closed for an hour
or more due to flooding caused by heavy rain and melting
hail stones. Some trees were stripped of their leaves.
Hail as large as 1/2 inch diameter was measured at Denver
International Airport where a funnel cloud was sighted.
In 2003...a tornado touched down briefly near Bennett...but
did no reported damage.
In 2005...severe thunderstorms produced 3/4 inch hail near
Brighton and a thunderstorm wind gust to 60 mph near
In 2014...severe thunderstorms produced large hail...from 1 to
1 1/2 inches in diameter...across parts of Arvada...Broomfield...
Dacono...Northglenn and Thornton.
7-8 In 1958...rainfall totaled 2.50 inches at Stapleton Airport.