January 2013 Climate Summary for Denver — NWS Boulder #codrought #cowx

February 1, 2013

From the National Weather Service Boulder office:

JANUARY 2013 STARTED OUT COLD AND DRY…WITH THE FIRST THREE DAYS OF THE MONTH BEING 9.3 DEGREES BELOW NORMAL. ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES RETURNED ON THE 7TH AND CONTINUED THROUGH THE 10TH. THE WEATHER TURNED SHARPLY COLDER ON THE 11TH AS AN UPPER LEVEL TROUGH OF LOW PRESSURE AND ASSOCIATED ARCTIC COLD FRONT MOVED INTO COLORADO. FOR A THREE DAY PERIOD FROM THE 12TH THROUGH THE 14TH…THE HIGH TEMPERATURE DID NOT REACH THE TEENS WITH OVERNIGHT LOWS BELOW ZERO.

IN ADDITION TO THE COLD TEMPERATURES…1.4 INCHES OF SNOW FELL AT DENVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT FROM THE 11TH THROUGH THE 14TH. MUCH ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES RETURNED TO DENVER ON THE 16TH AND CONTINUED THROUGH THE 28TH AS UPPER LEVEL HIGH PRESSURE TOOK HOLD OF THE REGION. DURING THIS PERIOD…THE HIGH TEMPERATURE AT DENVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT EXCEEDED 60 DEGREES THREE TIMES WITH THE MAXIMUM TEMPERATURE OF 66 DEGREES ON THE 24TH BEING THE WARMEST DAY OF THE MONTH. ON THE 28TH…A WEAK UPPER LEVEL STORM SYSTEM MOVED INTO COLORADO FROM THE SOUTHWEST PRODUCING LIGHT RAIN ACROSS MUCH OF NORTHEASTERN COLORADO. COLDER UNSETTLED WEATHER RETURNED TO DENVER ON THE 28TH…AS AN UPPER LEVEL TROUGH OF LOW PRESSURE AND ASSOCIATED COLD FRONT MOVED INTO THE STATE. 3.3 INCHES OF SNOW FELL AT DENVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT FROM THE EVENING OF THE 28TH THROUGH THE MORNING OF THE 29TH.

TEMPERATURES:

THE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE FOR THE MONTH OF JANUARY WAS 30.3 DEGREES F WHICH WAS 0.4 DEGREES BELOW NORMAL. JANUARY OF 1986 IS THE WARMEST JANUARY ON RECORD WITH AN AVERAGE TEMPERATURE OF 40.3 DEGREES F. THE COLDEST JANUARY ON RECORD (16.9 DEGREES F) OCCURRED BACK IN 1930.

THERE WERE NO DAYS IN WHICH THE MAXIMUM TEMPERATURE EXCEEDED 90 DEGREES. THERE WERE 6 DAYS IN WHICH THE DAYTIME HIGH TEMPERATURE DID NOT EXCEED 32 DEGREES F AND 4 DAYS WITH LOW TEMPERATURES AT OR BELOW ZERO DEGREES F. THE HIGHEST TEMPERATURE OF THE MONTH WAS 66 DEGREES WHICH OCCURRED ON THE 24TH. THE COLDEST TEMPERATURE OF THE MONTH WAS 12 DEGREES BELOW ZERO ON THE MORNING OF THE 12TH.

PRECIPITATION:

PRECIPITATION FOR THE MONTH OF JANUARY WAS 0.31 INCHES…WHICH IS 0.10 INCHES BELOW THE NORMAL 0F 0.41 INCHES. THE WETTEST JANUARY ON RECORD OCCURRED WAY BACK IN 1883 WHEN 2.35 INCHES OF PRECIPITATION WAS RECORDED. THE DRIEST JANUARY ON RECORD OCCURRED BACK IN 1952 AN OTHER YEARS.

4.6 INCHES OF SNOW WAS RECORDED DURING THE MONTH…WHICH IS 2.4 INCHES BELOW THE NORMAL OF 7.0 INCHES. THE SNOWIEST JANUARY ON RECORD OCCURRED BACK IN 1992 WHEN 24.3 INCHES OF SNOW FELL. THE LEAST SNOWIEST JANUARY ON RECORD OCCURRED BACK IN 1934 AND AGAIN IN 2003. ON THOSE YEARS…ONLY A TRACE OF SNOW WAS RECORDED AT DENVER.

THERE WERE NO THUNDERSTORMS OBSERVED AT DENVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT. THERE WERE TWO DAYS WITH DENSE FOG WITH A VISIBILITY AT OR BELOW 1/4 MILE DURING THE MONTH. A PEAK WIND OF 45 MPH FROM A WESTERLY DIRECTION WAS RECORDED ON THE 24TH.


Snowpack news: Statewide = 75% of avg, San Miguel/Dolores/Animas/San Juan = 89% (best in state) #codrought

February 1, 2013

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The Jan. Climate review and Feb. preview for SE CO is hot off the press from the NWS Pueblo #codrought #cowx

February 1, 2013

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From the National Weather Service Pueblo office:

January of 2013 was a relatively cold and dry month across the state, save for portions of southwest Colorado, which saw above normal precipitation thanks to two storm systems which brought 1 to 3 inches of snow water equivalent to the Continental Divide at the end of the month. The following graphics depict departures from normal for both temperatures and precipitation experienced across the state over the past month.

After a very cold start to the month, in which the average temperature through January 18th was an amazing 18 degrees below normal, Alamosa was finally able to break stubborn inversions and warmed up through the last week of the month. With that said, the average temperature for the entire month came in at 4.6 degrees, which is 11.7 degrees below normal. This makes January of 2013 the 5th coldest on record in Alamosa, well behind the average temperature of 1.4 degrees recorded in January of 1992. Alamosa received 0.07 inches of precipitation and 1 inch of snow through the month of January, which is 0.19 inches and 3 inches below normal, respectively.

The average temperature in Colorado Springs through the month of January was 30.3 degrees, which is 0.2 degrees below normal. Colorado Springs received 0.18 inches of precipitation and 3.2 inches of snow through the month of January, which is 0.14 inches and 2.4 inches below normal, respectively.

The average temperature in Pueblo through the month of January was 29.4 degrees, which is 1.1 degrees below normal. Pueblo received 0.21 inches of precipitation and 3.8 inches of snow through the month of January, which is 0.14 inches and 2.7 inches below normal, respectively.

Looking ahead into February, in Alamosa, the average high and low temperature of 36 degrees and 1 degree on February 1st warms to 45 degrees and 12 degrees, respectively, by the end of the month, with an average monthly temperature of 22.8 degrees. Alamosa averages 0.26 inches of precipitation and 3.8 inches of snow through the month of February.

In Colorado Springs, the average high and low temperature of 43 degrees and 18 degrees on February 1st warms to 48 degrees and 22 degrees, respectively, by the end of the month, with an average monthly temperature of 32.1 degrees. Colorado Springs averages 0.34 inches of precipitation and 4.9 inches of snow through the month of February.

In Pueblo, the average high and low temperature of 48 degrees and 15 degrees, respectively, on February 1st warms to 55 degrees and 21 degrees by the end of the month, with an average monthly temperature of 33.9 degrees. Pueblo averages 0.30 inches of precipitation and 3.8 inches of snow through the month of February.

Here’s the latest local storm report from the National Weather Service Boulder office.


Colorado Water Congress 2013 Annual Convention: Water leaders eyes are on the drought and wildfire impacts #codrought #2013cwc

February 1, 2013

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I’ll be live-tweeting the high points today @CoyoteGulch. Twitter users are using hash tag #2013cwc.

From The Pueblo Chieftain (Chris Woodka):

Drought and wildfires are at the top of the list of concerns for state lawmakers and water leaders.

Nearly everyone who spoke at the annual convention of the Colorado Water Congress touched on the topics Thursday morning. More than 500 attended. “Drought has an impact on water quality,” said Steve Gunderson, director of the Colorado Water Quality Control Division. “Wildfire has a catastrophic impact on water quality.”

One-­fifth of the state’s 250 public water systems were affected by last year’s wildfires, and the watersheds that supply them will take years to recover. “Last summer was a nightmare, and next year could be worse,” Gunderson said.

State Engineer Dick Wolfe said the recent storms that left snow in the mountains raised the snowpack to 76 percent, up from 62 percent one week ago. “We need 130 percent for the rest of the season to get to average,” Wolfe said. “But we need to get to 20 percent to 30 percent above average to make up for dry soil.” That isn’t likely to happen, according to the long­term forecast.

That could make things difficult for state parks and wildlife. “Without water, we don’t have a revenue stream,” Cables said. “We don’t have a grand plan.” State lawmakers also addressed the Colorado Water Congress, explaining several bills that finetune state water laws, including measures that would encourage agriculture efficiency, create guidelines for using “gray water,” prevent federal “taking” of ski­area water rights and provide more mitigation for wildfires.

State Sen. Gail Schwartz praised Gov. John Hickenlooper’s announcement Wednesday that $10.3 million in state money will be made available for wildfire mitigation designed to clear more than 4 million acres of standing timber. There were strong sentiments from lawmakers to protect agricultural ownership of water rights.

“We in the urban areas of Colorado can use water in the most efficient way so we don’t buy up and dry up agriculture,” said state Rep. Randy Fisher, chairman of the state House ag committee.


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