Current Watches and Warnings
Colorado, South and Southeast Grand/West Central and Southwest Boulder/Gilpin/Clear Creek/Summit/North and West Park Counties Above 9000 Feet
Public Information Statement
Statement as of 6:45 PM MDT on August 29, 2015
... This week in Metro Denver weather history...
19-30 in 1875... grasshoppers appeared in great numbers at 10:00 am
on the 19th. Thousands landed on the ground. The streets
were literally covered with them. Swarms of grasshoppers
were seen on each day. All gardens in the city were
devastated... and in the Countryside the grasshoppers were
very destructive to ripened grain. On the 30th the
grasshoppers were so numerous as to almost darken the sun.
30 in 1981... 60 mph winds were reported in Boulder.
In 2004... a severe thunderstorm produced hail as large as
1 inch in diameter in south Aurora near Cherry Creek.
31 in 1951... hail as large as 1 3/4 inches in diameter caused
an estimated 300 thousand dollars damage in Metro Denver.
Hail as large as 1 1/2 inches in diameter was measured
at Stapleton Airport.
In 1978... strong thunderstorm winds tore the roof off an
apartment building in Aurora... downed trees... and damaged
windows in Denver. A microburst wind gust to 58 mph was
recorded at Stapleton International Airport.
In 1985... a thunderstorm wind gust to 60 mph was clocked at
Buckley field in Aurora.
In 1997... hail to 1 1/4 inches in diameter was measured in
In 2006... a female postal worker was struck and injured by
lightning while delivering mail in Westminster.
In 2008... lightning struck a home in Brighton... damaging the
roof and a bedroom. The damaged totaled 20 thousand
1 in 1951... large hail pounded Boulder... causing thousands of
dollars in damage to roofs and automobiles. Heavy
thunderstorm rainfall flooded basements and produced
widespread street flooding.
In 1966... severe thunderstorms caused local flooding in areas
from Denver to the north and east. There was scattered
damage from hail and lightning. Streets were flooded in
Boulder... and streets and basements were flooded in several
areas of Metro Denver. The public reported 1 inch
diameter hail in Aurora and near Cherry Creek Reservoir.
Thunderstorm rainfall totaled only 0.39 inch at Stapleton
In 1985... severe thunderstorms dumped heavy rain and hail at
many locations along the Front Range from Denver south.
The southern and eastern suburbs of Metro Denver were
especially hard hit. Rainfall from 1 1/2 to 3 inches
caused extensive street flooding in Aurora where Two
Creeks rose out of their banks. Two homes in the city
suffered minor lightning damage. Almost 4 inches of rain
fell in the Parker area. Hail up to ping-pong Ball size
piled up to a foot deep and closed a Road in Evergreen.
Hail as large as 1 3/4 inches in diameter was reported
8 miles northeast of Deckers. Wind gusts to 65 mph were
estimated in southeast Aurora.
In 1990... Marble size hail piled up to 2 inches deep in the
foothills community of Kittredge... 18 miles southwest of
Denver. As much as half an inch of rain fell in just 15
minutes and caused minor Road and small stream flooding.
A thunderstorm dropped pea to Marble size hail and brief
heavy rain near Ward Road and 64th Avenue in Arvada.
Minor street and small stream flooding was reported in
In 1995... a strong thunderstorm microburst with only a few
drops of rain produced a recorded wind gust to 85 mph at
the site of the former Stapleton International Airport.
The wind gust occurred at 8:30 PM MDT. The all-time
highest recorded temperature in September... 97 degrees...
occurred. The same temperature also occurred on
September 5... 1899... September 4... 1960... and September 4...
1-5 in 1995... record breaking heat occurred on the first 5 days
of the month when the temperature climbed into the 90's
on each day. Record high temperatures of 97 degrees on
both the 1st and 4th equaled the all-time record maximum
for the month. High temperature of 95 degrees on the 3rd
was a record for the date. High temperatures of 94 degrees
on both the 2nd and the 5th were not records. The low
temperature of 64 degrees on the 4th equaled the record
high minimum for the date.
1-7 in 1978... the temperature reached 90 degrees or more on seven
consecutive days with the highest temperature... 94 degrees...
recorded on both the 4th and 6th.
2 in 1938... heavy cloudbursts in the foothills near the top of
Genesee Mountain caused flash flooding on Bear Creek at
Morrison. Nearly 8 inches of rain fell just north
of Morrison in 6 hours and drowned 6 people in a car
between Morrison and Kittredge. Damage was estimated at
nearly a half million dollars. Flash flooding also
occurred on south Boulder Creek in Eldorado Springs.
Rainfall totaled 4.42 inches in Eldorado Springs... and
rainfall was estimated to more than 6 inches in the
foothills west of the town. Many buildings and residences
were damaged in Eldorado Springs... and bridges were swept
away. The high waters forced residents from their homes
as far downstream as Erie. This was the flood of record
on south Boulder Creek.
In 1973... hail to 3/4 inch diameter was reported in Boulder.
In 1987... lightning struck two men who were standing under a
tree in downtown Denver. Both were seriously injured and
In 1996... lightning sparked a brush fire in the south buffer
zone of the Rocky Flats environmental test facility. No
structures were damaged... but the fire burned about 100
acres of grassland before being contained.
2-3 in 1892... there was a trace of rainfall each day. This...
together with a trace of rain on both the 7th and 8th... was
the only rainfall of the month... making the month the driest
on record. The monthly record was equaled in 1944.
3 in 1901... a thunderstorm produced rain... hail of unknown size...
and south winds sustained to 40 mph with gusts to 43 mph.
In 1961... Labor Day snow storm is the earliest date of the
first snow... trace and measurable... of the season. The heavy
wet snow broke many limbs from trees that were still in full
foliage. The storm produced 4.2 inches of snowfall at
Stapleton Airport with nearly a foot of snow in western
suburbs and in the foothills. Minimum temperature of 33
degrees was a record for the date and the coldest ever
recorded so early in the season.
In 1999... severe thunderstorms dumped large hail across Metro
Denver. Hail as large as 1 inch in diameter was measured
near Cherry Creek in Aurora and near Bennett. Hail to 3/4
inch in diameter fell in the city of Denver.
In 2002... a thunderstorm produced a wind gust to 51 mph at
Denver International Airport.
In 2003... very heavy thunderstorm rain washed out parts of
the Virginia Canyon Road above Idaho Springs. Up to
4 feet of mud reportedly washed down the Road during the
storm. Several vehicles were trapped on the Road. In
Idaho Springs... several streets... including the Main Street...
were also buried in mud and gravel. Some buildings in
town experienced minor flooding... including the basement
of the town Library and the police station.
3-6 in 1909... rainfall for the 4 days accumulated to 3.97 inches
in Boulder... while in Denver rainfall totaled 2.45 inches
on the 4th... 5th... and 6th.
4 in 1909... apparent Post-frontal heavy rainfall totaled 1.94
inches in downtown Denver. North winds were sustained
to 19 mph.
In 1944... a trace of rain fell. This together with a trace
of rain on the 9th... 10th... and 30th was the only
precipitation for the month. The total of a trace of
precipitation for the month equaled the driest September
on record first set in 1892.
In 1960... the highest recorded temperature in September... 97
degrees... occurred. The same temperature also occurred on
September 5... 1899... September 1... 1995... and September 4...
In 1989... a strong thunderstorm wind gust flipped a plane
taxiing on a private runway in Adams County east of Denver.
Two people were slightly injured and the plane was heavily
In 1992... strong winds developed across Metro Denver behind a
Pacific cold front. Sustained winds above 40 mph with gusts
as high as 60 mph were recorded mainly in and near the
foothills. Pre-frontal south winds gusted to 37 mph at
Stapleton International Airport.
In 1995... two people were injured when lightning struck their
home in Lakewood. The lightning entered the attic where it
started a small fire. It then traveled through the walls...
exploding a mirror and spraying glass on the residents.
Lightning also sparked small grass fires near Aurora... Denver
International Airport... and Bennett. The highest recorded
temperature in September... 97 degrees... occurred. The same
temperature also occurred on September 5... 1899... September
4... 1960... and September 1... 1995.
In 2000... thunderstorm winds gusted to 64 mph in Castle Rock.
5 in 1899... the highest recorded temperature in September... 97
degrees... occurred. The same temperature was also reached on
September 4... 1960... and September 1 and 4... 1995.
In 1940... a severe wind and hail storm confined mostly to the
west and north parts of the city occurred shortly after
4:30 PM. Hail stones ranged in size from 1/4 to 1/2 inch
in diameter. In north Denver... hail piled to a depth of
4 inches. Flooding occurred in one underpass... which
stalled 2 cars. One girl was injured when the weight
of the hail flattened a porch on which she stood.
Northeast winds were sustained to 29 mph with gusts to
32 mph in downtown Denver.
In 1987... a thunderstorm complex produced hail as large as
1 3/8 inches in diameter... 2 miles east of Buckley field in
Aurora. No damage was reported.
5-9 in 1988... layers of smoke aloft from large Forest fires in
Yellowstone National Park completely obliterated the sun
at times. At Stapleton International Airport... surface
visibility was reduced at times to 5 and 6 miles in smoke.
5-13 in 2010... the Fourmile Canyon wildfire... northwest of Boulder...
broke out on the morning of the 5th. It originated from
an unattended fire pit at a local residence. The wildfire
quickly consumed 5 1/2 square miles or 3500 acres the
first day... and forced the evacuation of over three
thousand residents. Erratic 45-mph gusts sent the fire in
two directions at times. Very dry weather conditions
preceded the fire. The combination of strong winds... low
relative humidities and dry fuels allowed the wildfire
spread rapidly through the steep... heavily forested terrain.
The flames were reportedly 20 to 50 feet in length. Towns
within the burn area included Salina... Wallstreet and Gold
Hill. The dry conditions coupled with gusty winds ranging
from 45 to 64 mph persisted for several more days. Fire
managers used as many as 700 firefighters and support
personnel from 35 agencies and seven air tankers to battle
the wildfire. A total of 6181 square acres or
approximately 10 square miles were burned. The Fourmile
Canyon wildfire was the most destructive fire in Colorado
history in terms of the damage to personal property. It
destroyed 171 homes with an estimated cost of 217 million
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