The annual, inevitable slide into winter continues. Now, Denver finds itself sitting at the beginning of the traditional temperature “rock bottom.”
Historically, December is the Mile High City’s coldest month of the year, just narrowly beating out January by a few tenths of a degree. But will this December be even colder than normal, or will the warm theme from November carry us through to the end of the year?
If you have been enjoying the frequency of the mild and sunny days of November, then you might be in luck again. While a “hat-trick” of chilly days will greet the Front Range to kick off the new month, it will not be December’s defining weather.
The Climate Prediction Center and some other long range forecasting tools are suggesting that December will be another mild month for much of the United States, including Colorado.
Average highs in Denver throughout December are in the low to middle 40s, with typical nighttime temperatures in the upper 10s. While arctic air outbreaks can still take swipes at the region, the threat for a long stretch of very cold days seems to be rather low. We will likely be gifted with many days to enjoy the outdoors, and another month of friendly heating bills.
Unfortunately, the dry theme of 2020 also looks to continue. Signs point to December being another below average month in the precipitation department across Colorado. This is disappointing news for the ongoing drought, and also for snow lovers.
December is typically Denver’s third snowiest month, coming in behind March and April. The city would normally tally 8 inches of snow this month. However, the expectations for a mild and dry conclusion to the year mean that Denver will almost surely miss that mark.
Interestingly, December has not delivered in the snow department for several years. The last time that Denver had a snowier-than-average December was in 2016, when 9.7 inches fell. Last year, only 2.8 inches of snow blanketed the city, and it all came with one storm on Dec. 28.
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