By Chris Spears


DENVER (CBS4) – Severe thunderstorms hit northeast Colorado on Sunday afternoon, producing everything from heavy rainfall with flash flooding to tornadoes and massive hailstones. In northeast Washington County, reports to the Storm Prediction Center show that hail measured 4.5 inches in diameter in the small town of Otis. That is roughly the size of a grapefruit.

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According to the Colorado Climate Center in Fort Collins the state record for hail in Colorado is 4.5 inches in diameter. Hail of this size has been recorded nearly two dozen times since 1970.

4.5″ June 9, 1971 Kit Carson County
4.5″ June 22, 1979 Morgan County
4.5″ July 30, 1979 Larimer County

4.5″ June 4, 1983 Weld County
4.5″ June 12, 1983 Washington County
4.5″ August 2, 1983 Denver County
4.5″ June 23, 1987 Otero County
4.5″ July 9, 1987 Sedgwick County
4.5″ June 29, 1989 Cheyenne County
4.5″ June 30, 1989 Morgan County

4.5″ July 6, 1993 Washington County
4.5″ June 7, 1994 Yuma County
4.5″ May 22, 1996 Sedgwick County
4.5″ July 23, 1996 Elbert County
4.5″ October 11, 1997 Bent County

4.5″ July 5, 2000 Logan County
4.5″ May 17 2001 Baca County
4.5″ August 17, 2002 Washington County
4.5″ August 9, 2004 El Paso County

4.5″ July 13, 2011 Adams County

Chances are that hailstones have been bigger in our state, especially on the northeast plains, but one problem with documenting hail is safely getting to the stone before it endures any significant melting.

Chris Spears

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