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Old 04-02-2011, 09:58 PM
 
Location: Littleton, CO
3,108 posts, read 4,658,992 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Optional Angel View Post
Thanks so much. I was a bit scared after hearing 180 out of 365 days in the year were below 30 degrees. I think jazzlover included nighttime lows. I don't really care if its -100 degrees at night, since I'll be sleeping. When I say 30 degrees I mean 30 between dawn and dusk. So far it kinda looks like its 2, maybe 3 months where you can expect below 30 all day. By the way, how's the snowfall in Denver? People describe it as dry and semi-arid. Does this mean that it barely snows in the winter? I don't really like the cold that much but I would rather have a snowy day than 8 months of dry cold with all the dead trees and stuff. How depressing.
There is no month when the normal daily highs are 30 degrees or below. Snow comes in spurts. We have occasional storms followed by a melt off, usually before the next storm comes. In fact, the record for number of days for having snow on the ground in Denver is "only" 61 days. In other words, you are looking at about 5 months of dry cold with dead trees.
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Old 04-02-2011, 11:04 PM
 
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The dominant weather pattern in Florida is humid summer weather.

The dominant weather pattern in Colorado is dry windy winter weather.

Colorado is at the crossroads of several seasonal weather patterns and the mountain elevation plays a major part in weather in CO. Compared to other states with more predictable weather patterns, it's more extreme in CO. Even in Denver you can get some cool days in summer(60's 70's) and some warm days in winter(50's 60's) but for a lot of the year it will be cool and the wind can play a major part in how things feel.

I would say if you enjoy the south florida beach weather, Colorado is not for you. However if you are open to cooler weather and weather extremes, then it is worth looking into.
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Old 04-03-2011, 04:47 AM
 
Location: The Big CO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
Humidity is very rare here, almost non-existent. Rarely does the temp get above 90 in summer, but it can and does. We do get an occasional cold spell in winter with -20F, but it doesn't last long. Climate here is rather mild compared to Chicago, St. Louis, Phoenix, etc. LOTS of sunshine too.
Rarely above 90 degrees in CO??? Pueblo averages 69 days of 90 or more in the summer, and about 9 days of 100 or more. Denver has about 25-35 days of 90 or more as well.
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Old 04-03-2011, 05:10 AM
 
Location: The Big CO
198 posts, read 1,043,296 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Optional Angel View Post
Hello. I am strongly considering Colorado as a place to move to sometime in the future, due to the really nice scenery and lots of jobs in my future career field. There is one thing that worries me though, the weather/climate. Being from Miami, I am well aware that pretty much any place I go to will be too cold, I am willing to adapt. But I am a bit scared after hearing the horror stories about the humid 110 degree summers in Chicago and Boston followed by -20 degrees 5 month winters. I realize that the temperature would vary greatly depending on elevation, but I just want to know the overall climate of the major cities, Denver, Boulder, Ft. Collins, etc. Is it humid or dry? Does it get over 90 in the summer? How long is the summer? One thing that would be a deal breaker for me is more than 2 months of 30 or lower temps. Thanks for the help.
Colorado is mainly arid and dry, with some alpine climates WAY UP IN the mountains. It does snow in the winter, but the winters here are not as bad as one might think. We do get some extreme cold, but it rarely lasts that long at all. In the winter, the normal high's are anywhere from the low 40's to the low 50's. Some colder days are usually in the 30's for highs, and more hot days can be in the mid to upper 50's, even the 60's. Sunshine is abundant, even in the winter! CO is a very sunny state. Colorado cities generally average atleast 70% of all possible sunshine hours, which ranks high for the country. Our winters are dry, and when it does snow, it melts VERY quick in arid climates and due to the chinook winds off the mountains. People always seem so surprised when it will be a high of 30, and snow 2, 3, maybe 4 inches or so. Than it will be in the upper 40's to upper 50's the rest of the week and sunny, and the snow will melt in a day, sometimes even less.

I must point out that when the sun does down in high elevation areas, the temperatures to drop significantly from the daytime. You can see this in NM, CO, UT, and Northern AZ. However, do not listen to anyone who tries to knock CO's weather. Colorado has pretty mild weather, for the most part. You can see extreme weather, but its not a common occurrence, and does not even happen every year like other parts of the country.

Our summers are typically hot and dry. If you look it up, Denver actually is much more hot than a city like Chicago in the midwest. I believe Denver usually gets 25-35 days of 90 or more on the low side. On the high side, Denver can have 50-60 days of 90 or more, depending on the summer. Normal summer highs can range from the upper 80's to the mid 90's. High 90's are not uncommon. We usually get atleast one or two days with 100, 101, or 102. Precipitation is low, only 15 inches per year in Denver. Not as low as the desert lands in CO, but still low.

Trust me when I say that we have mild weather compared to most places in America. I prefer our dry climate. I couldn't stand to live somewhere in the south. It may not get cold in the lower south, but its humid and rains a bunch, and the sunshine hours for southern states are only really abundant in far southern Florida, where you are from. The sun belt in the south (Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Arkansas, Tennessee, South Carolina, Northern Florida) is a lie. Just look the numbers. Even the upper south is uncomfortable for me. It gets cold there, and its humid as well. The Midwest...forget about it LOL. Nothing against the midwest, but the weather is not nice, in my opinion. Sunshine is low in most all areas, it rains way more than the SW, and has frequent extended periods of cold. The Northeast??? Its too humid for me, and snows like crazy. Also, the snow in these other areas does not melt very quickly.

So it really depends on what you like. CO weather has so many stereotypes, but our winters are actually mild in most cities. Granted, IN the mountains, it snows like crazy and is cold. However, most of our population lives on the front range and the western CO desert lands by Grand Junction. The weather in CO is great. Also, its very RARE to see extended periods of clouds. by extended periods I mean one, two, three days in a row of clouds. It just RARELY happens.
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Old 04-03-2011, 05:26 AM
 
Location: The Big CO
198 posts, read 1,043,296 times
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The whole "300 DAYS OF SUN" thing in CO is saying that there are over 300 days a year where the sun is out for atleast a significant amount of hours. Its like that everywhere. If you wanna see one place in the USA that has 300 days of complete sunshine for the entire day, than no place does. Yuma, Arizona might come close but thats it. So when CO, NM, UT, AZ, NV, CA say there cities and towns have 300 days of sunshine, they mean 300 days where the sun is out for a significant amount of those days.

For example, if you look climate data for New York City, it will say that NYC has about 230 days of sun, but NYC has nowhere near 230 days of complete sun. They have about 35-40 days of complete sun, if that. But they have 230 days where the sun is out for a significant amount of time. Therefore, CO and all southern mountain west cities and west coast cities have all over 300 days of sun and usually over 100 days of complete and total sunshine.

A better stat to look for is the total hours of sun that a city receives or the total percentage of poissible sunshine hours. In that case, most ALL colorado cities have over 3,000 hours of sunshine and have a 70% of possible sunshine hours.

These are statistically the sunniest cities in the US. This is a list of the days with 100% sunshine for the entire day and the percentage of sunshine where sun is possible. For the MAJOR CITIES, the list is as follows:

1. Phoenix- 211 clear sunny days and 85% possible sunshine hours
2. Las Vegas- 210 clear sunny days and 79% possible sunshine hours
3. Fresno- 194 clear sunny days and 85% possible sunshine hours
4. Tucson- 193 clear sunny days and 85% possible sunshine hours
5. El Paso- 193 clear sunny days and 84% possible sunshine hours
6. Sacramento- 188 clear sunny days and 78% possible sunshine hours
7. Albuquerque- 186 clear sunny days and 76% possible sunshne hours
8. Los Angeles- 167 clear sunny days and 73% possible sunshine hours
9. San Francisco- 160 clear sunny days and 66% possible sunshine hours
10. San Diego- 146 clear sunny days and 68% possible sunshine hours
11. Oklahoma City- 139 clear sunny days and 68% possible sunshine hours
12. Denver- 115 clear sunny days and 69% possible sunshine hours

Sunniest US Cities - Current Results

Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Colorado, and Utah (SLC receives over 3000 hours of sunshine) are generally the sunniest states in the US. Oklahoma, West Texas, and the very southern tip of south Florida ranks high as well.

Other CO cities have tons and tons of sunshine as well.

*Pueblo- 3500 hours of sunshine and 79% of possible sunshine hours
*Colorado Springs- 3300 hours of sunshine and 75% of possible sunshine hours
*Fort Collins- 3000 hours of sunshine and 68% of possible sunshine hours
*Boulder- 3100 hours of sunshine and 70% of possible sunshine hours
*Greeley- 3000 hours of sunshine and 67% of possible sunshine hours
*Grand Junction- 3200 hours of sunshine and 73% of possible sunshine hours

Most all cities in CO are very sunny cities. Southern, Southeastern and Southwestern Colorado tends to be the sunniest. Western and Northwestern Colorado are very sunny but not quite as sunny as the southern parts of CO. And Northern, Northeastern, and Eastern Colorado are very sunny as well but not as sunny as the other areas in the state. 3000 hours of sunshine generally translates to 300 or more days a year where the sunshine is abundant for atleast several to a few hours of those days. Thats what 300 days of sunshine mean in the mountain west and west coast.

Too see how CO compares to major cities and states in other regions, i will show some easy to research stats for cities in the midwest, northeast, south, and northwest.

*Seattle- 2100 hours of sunshine
*Portland- 2300 hours of sunshine
*Boise- 2900 hours of sunshine
*Cheyenne- 2900 hours of sunshine
*Kansas City- 2800 hours of sunshine
*Wichita- 2900 hours of sunshine
*St.Louis- 2500 hours of sunshine
*Omaha- 2700 hours of sunshine
*Des Moines- 2600 hours of sunshine
*Chicago- 2500 hours of sunshine
*Milwaukee- 2400 hours of sunshine
*Minneapolis/St.Paul- 2700 hours of sunshine
*Detroit- 2400 hours of sunshine
*Indianapolis- 2400 hours of sunshine
*Cleveland- 2100 hours of sunshine
*Cincinatti- 2300 hours of sunshine
*Pittsburgh- 2000 hours of sunshine
*Philadelphia- 2400 hours of sunshine
*New York City- 2600 hours of sunshine
*Buffalo- 2200 hours of sunshine
*Boston- 2600 hours of sunshine
*Washington D.C.- 2500 hours of sunshine
*Baltimore- 2500 hours of sunshine
*Richmond- 2800 hours of sunshine
*Charlotte- 2800 hours of sunshine
*Columbia- 2800 hours of sunshine
*Louisville- 2500 hours of sunshine
*Nashville- 2500 hours of sunshine
*Knoxville- 2600 hours of sunshine
*Atlanta- 2700 hours of sunshine
*Little Rock- 2900 hours of sunshine
*New Orleans- 2600 hours of sunshine
*Jackson- 2700 hours of sunshine
*Jacksonville- 2800 hours of sunshine
*Tampa- 2900 hours of sunshine
*Miami- 3100 hours of sunshine
*Dallas- 2800 hours of sunshine
*Houston- 2500 hours of sunshine
*San Antonio- 2600 hours of sunshine

Only Miami really can compete with the total number of sunshine hours in the southwest/southern mountain west and west coast cities.

All in all, CO cities are VERY SUNNY. The "REAL SUN BELT" should not include areas in Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Alabama, Mssissippi, Georgia, etc. The real sunniest states are Arizona, California, Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah. Oklahoma, the far western parts of Texas, and the southern most parts of Florida are very sunny as well. Also, Arizona is the REAL sunshine state, it shouldn't be Florida.


Thats a post I left on the forum, "What is Northern CO really like?". You can easily look all these stats up on climate data charts. That is just explaining what the 300 days of sun mean out west.
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:03 AM
 
20,302 posts, read 37,784,136 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CO.Native.SW View Post
Rarely above 90 degrees in CO??? Pueblo averages 69 days of 90 or more in the summer, and about 9 days of 100 or more. Denver has about 25-35 days of 90 or more as well.
True, but we sure aren't Phoenix or Las Vegas, with their months of blistering 100+ days. I live on the north end of COLO SPGS, near the USAF Academy and we rarely ever see 90F at the house, and only run the A/C for a few days.
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:16 AM
 
9,816 posts, read 19,014,998 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
True, but we sure aren't Phoenix or Las Vegas, with their months of blistering 100+ days. I live on the north end of COLO SPGS, near the USAF Academy and we rarely ever see 90F at the house, and only run the A/C for a few days.
Some of my relatives lived in 1930's and 40's houses in Denver and they only had a window AC or two, if necessary. It helped that trees had grown up over 70 years as well and provided shade.

I'd say there is about a 7 week window in Colorado where it can get pretty hot from the last week of June to about halfway into August, but temps start inching downward after that. I think some of my favorite days in CO are in September.

When I lived at 8000 ft, fall arrived by august 15. You could tell ever so slightly that it was cooler at night and leaves started to change.

What I find having lived back east and in Colorado is that CO is much more extreme in weather swings. You can have some stunning days in CO that are amazing and other days that are crazy with wind, cold, heat, snow and so on.
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Old 04-03-2011, 10:55 AM
 
Location: The Big CO
198 posts, read 1,043,296 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
True, but we sure aren't Phoenix or Las Vegas, with their months of blistering 100+ days. I live on the north end of COLO SPGS, near the USAF Academy and we rarely ever see 90F at the house, and only run the A/C for a few days.
Thats true. C-Springs is even higher in elevation that Denver is, which may have something to do with that. C-Springs has pretty comfortable weather in the summer. I think the highest average high temperature for a month is 85, which is nice. I am pretty sure they get 15-20 days of 90 degrees or more, which is less than Denver, Pueblo, Grand Junction. Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Tucson are probably the hottest places in this country BY FAR. I know it seems to people like LA and SoCal is really hot in its cities, but San Diego has mild temperatures in the summer and even LA's greatest average temperature for a month is 86 degrees on average.

The hottest places in CO are pretty much Pueblo, Grand Junction, La Junta, Rocky Ford. Our climate in CO is pretty comparable to places in Central and Northern New Mexico, Utah, and Northern Arizona. The mountains in these other states also receive lots of snow IN the high elevation mountains, just like Colorado. A funny fact is that Flagstaff, Arizona receives more snow and has more snowy days than any cities off the mountains in CO.
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Old 04-03-2011, 11:22 AM
 
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People confuse the term "mild climate" with "mild weather." Compared to, say, Minnesota or Maine, Colorado's lower elevations have a relatively mild climate, meaning that average temperatures, precipitation, snowfall, etc. are fairly "mild"--though "mild" is certainly a subjective term.

Colorado weather, however, is NOT mild--in fact, Colorado weather can be quite extreme, in both variation and event. Not only is Colorado weather history full of extreme events, but extreme weather occurs just about every year in Colorado. Things like massive temperature changes within hours, huge snowfalls, high winds, extreme hailstorms, flash floods, searing drought, etc.--all of those occur in Colorado with relatively frequency. As I read years ago in an article about Colorado weather, "There is nothing 'precious' or 'cute' about Colorado weather." How true.

San Diego, California has pretty mild, benign weather--Colorado ain't that.
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Old 04-03-2011, 03:26 PM
 
Location: Golden, CO
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For 2010 in Denver, the number of days above 90F were 49. Normal is 33.1. 2009 had 18.

Days where highs were below 32F were 13. Normal is 22.2. 2009 had 26.

5 days were below 0F. 9 is average. 2009 had 7 days. When you do get below freezing days in arow up here, I'd say on average it's 4 days. Not like the northeast where it can be like 2-3 weeks. But the weather is erratic up here. to know more click here for 2010 summary:

http://www.crh.noaa.gov/bou/?n=annsum2010

Last edited by j96g; 04-03-2011 at 03:27 PM.. Reason: forgot link
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