Storm system bringing beneficial moisture to Colorado this week

A slow-moving low pressure system is pushing into Colorado today, bringing a variety of weather from rain to thunderstorms to mountain snow.  Northeast Colorado, including Denver metro, is likely to experience some of its best moisture in quite some time.  Widespread rain showers and thunderstorms will fill in this afternoon and continue overnight into Thursday, with short-range models indicating anywhere from 0.75-2.00″ of rain across Northeast Colorado with the highest amounts along/west of I-25 from Denver north to the Wyoming border.  The image below shows the trough of low pressure tracking into Colorado.

 

Source: (National Center for Atmospheric Research)

 

In addition to the beneficial rains, there is also a threat for strong to possibly severe thunderstorms across the eastern plains of Colorado today.  East of Colorado, the threat for severe weather is further enhanced across Kansas and the plains states, where there will be a threat of tornadoes and large hail this afternoon.  Below is the Storm Prediction Center’s Outlook for today.

 

 

Of course, given the time of year with a system of this nature, we can also expect some good snow for the mountains of Colorado.  Snow levels are expected to dip to about 7,000′ tonight, so Denver will not see any snow out of this but the foothills west of Denver will likely pick up some wet snow accumulations.  The potential for snowfall will increase the higher up in elevation one goes.  Winter Storm Warnings and Winter Weather Advisories are out for much of the higher elevation mountain areas in Colorado, with some areas likely picking up double digit totals.  The highest snowfall amounts are expected in the Northern Front Range Mountains, including Rocky Mountain National Park.

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