Wednesday, 4 Aug 2021

Thursday’s snowstorm pushed Boulder to its snowiest winter on record

After a fresh 10 inches of snow on Thursday morning, it is officially Boulder’s snowiest winter on record.

With at least 10.5 inches (and counting) from Thursday’s storm, Boulder is now up to 145 inches so far this winter, surpassing the winter of 1908-09 for the snowiest winter on record in the city.

The National Weather Service in Boulder reported the 10.5 inch total on Thursday morning.

With 10.5 inches of fresh snow, Boulder’s seasonal total is up to 144.8 inches, with snow expected to boost that number throughout the day Thursday.

— NWS Boulder (@NWSBoulder) April 16, 2020

Denver’s seasonal total is far below that, with about 56 inches of official snow before the current storm system. But, Boulder has been boosted by heavy upslope-style snow events. Because of Boulder’s location on the edge of the foothills, easterly winds rapidly rise and efficiently condense into snow there — far more than Denver.

“This is because Boulder sits in the premier geographic location for snow, definitely the best of any ‘Plains’ city across the Front Range,” said Boulder-based meteorologist Ben Castellani of BoulderCAST. “The sharp rise of the Flatirons is the first significant obstacle easterly winds encounter.”

There are some gaps in Boulder’s official data, mainly over the course of a few months in the late 1800s and early 1900s. However, based on the National Weather Service’s metrics, this winter is now Boulder’s snowiest on record.

Boulder averages about 85 inches of snow each winter, while Denver typically gets about 57 inches.

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