Posted by: pyeager | April 30, 2009

Sometimes the Snow Comes Down in May

While I’ve written on a couple of occasions about the likelihood of late-season snow in the Rockies (most recently, Not Too Late For Snow), it is unusual to have significant snow storms during May. It can happen, though, including a particularly noteworthy storm during the first week of May1978.

A strengthening upper-level storm system slid out of the Pacific Northwest and through the Rockies, which is typical of a spring storm. It occurred a little later than normal, but it was typical slow-moving spring storm.

While everyone else was starting to plan for about the first cookout of the summer on Memorial Day in a couple of weeks, Fort Collins, Colorado, was digging out from two feet of heavy, wet snow (which collapsed some roofs). Denver had 14 inches of snow. Some of the highest elevations had 4 feet of snow.

The next time you complain about it being too cool in May, think of this.

–Paul Yeager


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