High impact weather event with 1 to 2 feet of snow in parts of Teller and El Paso counties

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Posted at 6:53 AM, May 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-20 18:35:45-04

Today’s Forecast:
Some of the heaviest snow we've forecast in two years is set to hit southern Colorado this afternoon through Saturday morning.

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Snow totals from Friday through Saturday 5/20 - 5/21/2022.
Snow totals from Friday through Saturday 5/20 - 5/21/2022.
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Snow totals from Friday through Saturday 5/20 - 5/21/2022.

We'll start locally with rain mixing with snow over Monument Hill and northern Teller county by 12 pm. We'll see rain and snow push farther south through El Paso County through the mid-afternoon, changing fully to snow by 6 pm tonight in Colorado Springs. Teller county will see a much quicker change to snow by 2 to 3 pm.

Pueblo and Fremont counties will see rain this evening, but afternoon 10 pm or midnight, we'll change that rain to snow, especially in Fremont County. Much of that will melt on pavement that was at one point yesterday warmer than 100 degrees.

Rain and snow will spread down I-25 into Walsenburg overnight but east of I-25 for areas like Otero, Bent, and Baca counties, most of your moisture will fall as rain, not snow.

Heavy snow could easily down tree limbs and knock out power today and tonight, with dangerous if not impossible travel conditions overnight.

Colorado Springs forecast: High: 51; Low: 30. Rain and snow move into El Paso county between 1 to 3 pm with a total switch over to snow by 5 to 6 pm across Colorado Springs. We'll see really have snow with lots of water content through Saturday morning. A general 6 to 12 inches of snow is possible across town, but we know that nearly 3 inches of that snow could melt as it falls from warm pavement. Don't park under trees if you can because heavy snow could easily rip down weak limbs.

Pueblo forecast: High: 61; Low: 33. Cloudy today with rain moving into Pueblo after 5 pm today. We'll see rain through the evening but after 10 pm, we may have enough cold and energy to change rain to snow over the city. Warm pavement temperatures will likely melt most of the snow that hits the ground in Pueblo, but we could still see a couple of inches in the grass or on elevated surfaces.

Canon City forecast: High: 55; Low: 33. Cloudy and dry until rain moves into Fremont County late today. We'll see a quick snow changeover in the mountains with really heavy accumulations north into the mountains of Fremont county. Canon City, Penrose, and Florence should see rain turn to snow after 5 to 6 pm, but the snow changeover could take a couple of hours. The ground will melt the first couple inches of snow, but a general 1 to 5 inches in the grass and elevated surfaces is possible through Saturday morning.

Woodland Park forecast: High: 42; Low: 22. Cloudy and cold with snow through the afternoon and overnight hours. We could see rain at first just after the lunch hour, but it should be a quick switch to snow by 3 to 4 pm. Really heavy accumulations are expected across all of Teller County through Saturday morning, and the weight of the snow will easily take down tree limbs and possibly lead to power outages. An easy 10 to 20 inches is possible across Teller County broadly, even accounting for some early melting and compaction.

Tri-Lakes forecast: High: 30s; Low: 20s. Rain will move down from Denver just after lunch, but the elevation of Monument Hill and Black Forest will likely turn that rain to snow pretty quickly, generally around 1 to 2 pm. Snow will start to accumulate by 4 pm followed by heavy accumulation through the overnight hours. 12 to 18 inches are possible in Palmer Lake, Monument, and Black Forest, although 2 to 3 inches of that snow could melt as it first starts to fall. Travel to and from Denver will be difficult between 3 to 6 pm, and near impossible after 8 pm tonight due to heavy snow and large accumulations.

Plains forecast: High: 60s; Low: 30s. Oddly for most of the plains along and south of Highway 50, this will be a pretty nice day! We'll see rain move across the plains tonight but most of the region will not see any snow accumulation. Even if there is a chance for a snow changeover in places like Crowley or northern Otero county, it just won't accumulate on the warm ground. A quarter of an inch to 3/4 of an inch are possible along Highway 50 with a little less as you head southeast to Baca County.

Walsenburg and Trinidad forecast: High: 60s; Low: 30s. Warm, dry , and windy today with rain and some snow falling overnight. We'll see rain push down to Walsenburg by 8 pm tonight but the snow changeover may not happen till midnight. Warm pavement could melt most of the snow from Walsenburg to Trinidad, but a few inches could collect in the grass at Walsenburg. Heavier snow is forecast west into the mountains with 6 to 12 inches for La Veta.

Mountains forecast: High: 30s; Low: 20s. Huge snow is forecast for most of the Front Range with an easy 2 feet from the Rampart Range and north to the mountains west of Denver. We'll see about 10 to 20 inches over the Wet Mountains in towns like San Isabel, with around 6 to 10 inches in the Wet Mountain Valley by Westcliffe. Tree limbs could easily come down from the weight of the snow today and tonight and power outages should be expected.

Extended outlook forecast:
Snow will fall through Saturday morning but taper off into the afternoon. We'll see a harder freeze Saturday night with even Pueblo getting down near 32 degrees.

We will keep seeing scattered rain chances in the forecast from Sunday through Tuesday of next week, but snow could mix in with the rain on Sunday for areas like Teller county and west into the mountains.

Curious about the First Alert 5 Weather Storm Impact Scale? Check out our cheatsheet explainer.

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