5 Things Coloradans Need To Know About This Weekend’s Winter Storm
"Fake Spring" is the term I hear being used by longtime Colorado residents about the recent, almost summer-like, weather over the past few days.
I get it...I used to live in Northern Nevada, where the elevation and climate were pretty similar. The recent beautiful days have us dreaming of a time when we can consistently wear our short-sleeve shirts and shorts, drive with the windows down and enjoy some outdoor time without freezing our buns off.
But those days will have to wait for a while. According to weather.com, a forecasted snowstorm is expected to dump multiple inches, even FEET, of snow on Northern Colorado this weekend.
However, just like the weather, these storms can change course and even the slightest shift can mean the difference between 2 inches of snow and 2 feet. Still, even though I don't want to drive in a storm like that, I have to admit it would be wonderful for our mountain snowpack and outdoor recreation.
Now, according to KDVR's weather guru Matt Makens, there are a few things we need to know about this upcoming storm:
- The brunt of the storm is expected to hit on Saturday, so we're still five days away from that. A LOT can happen between now and then in terms of the direction of the storm. That could mean a lot more or a lot less accumulation, too, depending on the winds and how the storm shifts. Plan for the worst case scenario and hope for the best.
- As of Monday, snowfall totals look significant across much of the state, especially in the Denver area and foothills and mountains just to the west of the city. The data through Monday hold onto a snowfall forecast that will be historic for a La Niña March. We're talking FEET here, people, IF the pattern holds.
- If the current pattern holds, we could see weekend travel come to pretty much a complete halt, and some pretty significant agriculture losses will probably occur as well.
- But, once again, even the most minor shift in the storm’s direction and speed will dramatically alter the total precipitation/snowfall on the way. Meaning, we could see just a few inches to possibly a couple of feet. I say let's hope for something in the middle, because we definitely need some snow up in the mountains to avoid another horrendous fire season. Plus, I wouldn't mind getting another round of sledding in with my son.
- These kinds of systems can also spawn some pretty severe thunderstorms, including severe weather in the warm part of the system. As of now, that risk is off to the east in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas.