Denver weather: Recapping the wild weather along the Front Range Friday – The Denver Post

After a slow start to the severe weather season along the Front Range, Friday featured more than a little bit of everything: flooding, large hail and even tornado warnings. More storms could be in the forecast for Saturday as well, though this weekend isn’t expected to be as eventful as Friday.

Parts of the west Denver metro area saw over an inch of rain in 15 minutes, prompting flash flood warnings, tornado warnings and reports of hail up to the size of baseballs on Friday evening.

In Wheat Ridge, one rain gauge recorded 1.26 inches of rain in just half an hour, an astonishing amount of rainfall for the Denver area. That led to the National Weather Service office in Boulder to issue a flash flood warning for downtown Denver and areas just west of the city.

Rain totals ranged from only a few hundredths of an inch of rain on the south and east sides of town to over an inch on the west sides of the city. Two rain gauges near downtown Denver recorded over three-quarters of an inch of rainfall, all of that falling in less than an hour.

For context, that’s about 5-10 percent of Denver’s average annual rainfall (about 14 inches) falling in less than an hour.

Meanwhile, along the Palmer Divide, huge hail rocked areas from Castle Rock to Colorado Springs. Up to baseball-sized hail pummeled parts of the Colorado Springs area, while hail covered the ground in the Castle Rock and parts of the Palmer Divide.

Hail covered the ground across parts of the metro area, including Golden and areas just west of downtown Denver, and in the southern metro area as well.

North of Colorado Springs, tornado warnings were issued for a string of storms along the Palmer Divide. While as of Friday evening no tornadoes were confirmed to have touched down on Friday, a wall cloud was spotted in Black Forest.

A rotating wall cloud (seen below) is the cloud from which tornadoes typically form. That was with a tornado-warned storm just north of Colorado Springs on Friday afternoon.

Ample wind shear and moisture, along with a mid-level trough of low pressure, combined to soak and pelt the Front Range on Friday. While the rain is certainly needed in light of the ongoing drought, it came with a severe weather element that’s often not quite as welcome along the Front Range.

More strong storms are possible on Saturday in eastern Colorado, though Saturday’s storms probably won’t have quite the punch that Friday’s had. Damaging winds and large hail, though, are possible along the Front Range on Saturday.

By Sunday, drier and hotter weather will move into the region, with temperatures expected to bounce up into the mid 90s. Monday will again feature sunny and hot weather, with highs back into the 90s, before a stormy cool down on Tuesday and Wednesday. Temperatures will likely top out in the mid 80s on Tuesday and Wednesday.

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