Denver weather: Tuesdays snow should push January snowfall total above normal

A storm moving into the Denver area will bring a cold front and snow, with the possibility of upslope winds.

The areas expected to see the most snow are in the foothills south and west of Denver, where 4 to 8 inches of snow is possible.

For much of the I-25 corridor, up to 5 inches is possible. Since it will be cold and snowy for Tuesday morning’s commute, winter weather advisories have been posted from Castle Rock to Fort Collins for accumulating snow and travel impacts.

Most of Colorado will get a little something from this storm but those in the southwest foothills of Denver, as well as the Sangre De Cristos and the Wet Mountains, will see the most snow through Tuesday. Denver area roads are expected to be covered in snow and ice by Tuesday morning leading to a tough commute.

This snow will inevitably melt to water and that is the important factor to watch. With the ongoing drought, moisture is what we need and the storm Tuesday will provide up to a quarter-inch of liquid water for Denver while some areas could get more than a half-inch of liquid from this storm.

So far, January has delivered 5.6 inches of snow for Denver. With the storm coming on Tuesday, we will likely rise above the “normal” amount of snow that is typically expected for the month which is 6.5 inches.

It’ll take less than an inch of snow in Denver on Tuesday to get us to the average monthly total. We haven’t had a month this season with above-normal snowfall. The season started off extremely bleak with no snow reported in all of October and November. We finally got some snow in December but we ended with several inches less than normal. With January likely to produce above-normal snowfall, Denver would benefit if this trend continues. In total, we are running well over a foot deficit in terms of snowfall this season.

With that said, our snowiest months of the year are coming up (March and April) so we have plenty of time to make up this deficit. However, the latest 3-month outlook is calling for February through April to feature warmer and drier than normal conditions.

Andy Stein is a freelance meteorologist.

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