By Chris Spears
DENVER (CBS4) – In digging through all of the weather stories published on CBSDenver.com during 2017 it feels like the year was relatively quiet all things considered.
There were several extremely popular weather-related stories, including ones about the eclipse, meteor showers and the moon or sun. But heavy snow, fire, drought, wind and hail seemed to dominate the majority of headlines over the last twelve months.
January 2017: Crested Butte Receives 7½ Feet Of Snow In 10 Days
A series of wet, winter storms slammed Colorado’s high country with heavy snow in early 2017, causing everything from avalanches to a building collapse in Breckenridge. So much snow fell at some ski areas that they were forced to close.
Just 86 days after Denver recorded it’s latest 80-degree reading on record the city’s official weather station measured the earliest 80-degree temperature. The warm, dry month sparked dozens of wildfires along the Front Range.
A wind-driven grass fire scorched 30,000 acres on Colorado’s northeastern plains in March. The flames killed nearly 200 cattle, destroyed several homes and threatened the small town of Haxtun.
While the western half of Colorado was still digging out in April from several weeks of heavy snow, it was a different story in Denver. The city ended the meteorological fall and winter with the least amount of snow since records began in 1882.
May 2017: Hail Damage Spans Front Range
A severe thunderstorm unleashed a massive core of hail across parts of metro Denver, causing so much damage that it closed an entire shopping mall. Hundreds of cars, homes and businesses sustained heavy damage.
After a few very hot days in mid-June that put everyone in the summer mood some unusually cold air moved into the state and forced the closure of Denver area pools.
After a very snowy season in the mountains things dried out quickly in June and July resulting in several wildfires. One broke out so close to Breckenridge that the entire town was briefly placed on a pre-evacuation notice.
August 2017: Pikes Peak Sees Summer Snow
While it’s not uncommon to see snow on Colorado’s highest peaks during the summer it’s still always exciting to witness and the pictures get a lot of attention.
September 2017: Watch: Smokejumper Dives Towards Colorado Wildfire
September was dominated by fire headlines, especially in western Colorado, but a few fires also broke out along the I-70 corridor between Denver and Summit County.
October 2017: Denver’s Temp Drops 71 Degrees In Under 40 Hours
For many it sounds impossible, but for those who live in Denver, it’s just life at a mile above sea level, where big temperature swings are common as warm and cold air masses battle it out over the central Rockies.
November 2017: Denver Shatters All-Time Heat Record For November
For the second year in a row Denver set a new all-time November temperature record and the latest 80-degree reading since records began.
December 2017: Denver Ends Snowless Streak With 0.4 Inches Of Snow
Denver ended its snowless streak but just barely. The city had been in the running to set a new record for the number of days without measurable snow. The streak ended at 65 days when 0.4 inches of snow was reported at Denver International Airport on Dec 14.
Meteorologist Chris Spears travels weekly in the CBS4 Mobile Weather Lab reporting about Colorado’s weather and climate. Check out his bio, connect with him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @ChrisCBS4.