DENVER (CBS) – The second storm to hit Colorado this week was already bringing snow to the mountains Thursday morning. The moisture will eventually reach Denver and the Front Range mainly as rain.
Snow will impact mountain areas west of the Continental Divide through Noon on Thursday before spreading east of the Divide by the early afternoon. There are no warnings or advisories posted for the mountains but travel along I-70 above Georgetown could become very slow by the end of the day. Most mountain areas in Colorado above 9,000 feet will see 1-4 inches of accumulation. Isolated higher amounts are also possible.
For Denver and the Front Range, rain showers will develop mainly after 3 p.m. and many roads in the metro area could be wet for the evening commute. By 7 p.m., temperatures should be cold enough around Denver, Boulder, and Fort Collins to support snow but moisture will be very limited by that point and no accumulating snow is expected below 6,000 feet.
For areas above 6,000 feet on the south and west sides of the metro area like Castle Rock and Evergreen, minor accumulation is possible by late evening mainly the grass. All the precipitation should end for areas east of the mountains by midnight.
In terms of temperatures, Thursday will be a chilly day for October with high temperatures only in the upper 40s to around 50 degrees. That is what’s considered normal in early December or late January. Most mountain towns won’t get out of the 30s on Thursday.
Then the coldest night of the season so far is expected going into Friday morning thanks to clearing skies behind the storm system. Some mountain communities will drop into the single digits for the first time this season while a widespread freeze is expected for all neighborhoods around Denver, Boulder, and Fort Collins.
A Freeze Warning has been issued for the Denver metro area as well as the northeast plains of Colorado from 12 a.m. until 9 a.m. Friday. Be sure to protect plants and drain sprinklers.
Looking ahead to Friday, it will be sunny and dry but also quite breezy. The wind will be coming from the northwest making it feel quite chilly for most of the day. Warmer weather will finally return for the weekend.