The weather pattern over the past five days has been notable in many different ways. For one, a prevailing easterly, upslope flow along and east of the Front Range mountains has resulted in a persistent cloud cover with locations in the foothills typically being in the cloud. We have not seen much of the sun since Friday, and this is unusual for Colorado. Temperatures have been very cold for early October. Highs have not been above freezing (32 F) since Sunday with nighttime temps in the low 20s F. Since Friday, we have had 7.3 inches of snow and 0.82 inches of liquid (yes, there was some rain mixed in there). This has brought welcome moisture to the Colorado Front Range Foothills which are running a large precipitation deficit for 2018. On top of that, we had a prolonged period of freezing drizzle last night which left a shiny coating of ice on everything.
The trough of low pressure anchored over the western United States that has brought this damp, cool weather pattern will bring one more day of unsettled weather across Colorado on Thursday. On Friday, this trough will split, with some of its energy forming a cut off low off of the California coast while the northern stream branch of the trough lifts far enough north of Colorado to allow some milder temperatures to return. This respite from the stormy weather will be brief. By Saturday evening, the models are in agreement that a strong cold front will sag southward across Colorado. Behind this front, strong easterly upslope winds and moisture will combine to bring another round of snow to Nederland and the surrounding foothills communities Saturday night and Sunday. At the moment, moderate snowfall amounts are expected, but there are still plenty of details to iron out in the forecast. The good news is that temperatures should reach into the low-mid 40s in Nederland on Friday and Saturday. Then some of the coldest temperatures of the season will settle in on Sunday and Monday. Monday morning will be especially cold as a cold dome of high pressure settles in over the Central Rockies.
Stay tuned for more details on the weekend storm!