A warm start to September

Hot, with a few afternoon thunderstorms

DENVER - Early September typically marks the transition from the daily summer thunderstorm threat, to what is often considered the best time of the year in Colorado! A few showers and light thunderstorms will be possible each afternoon and early evening for the next few days, but we are on the tail end of the season.  

With lighter winds and rather warm temperatures aloft, the atmosphere is pretty stable, so any thunderstorms that develop tend to be modest and short lived. In contrast, during springtime, the winds aloft are usually fast and the upper level temperatures are chilly after the long winter. The result is plenty of surface instability and powerful thunderstorms.

We'll see mostly sunny skies this morning, with mid-80s by lunch and highs in the low 90s on the plains this afternoon.  The mountains will see 60s and 70s.  

Look for mostly sunny skies through midday, with a 10 to 20% chance of storms along the Front Range this afternoon.  

By this weekend, the winds aloft will begin to shift a bit and bring a pool of cooler air into the western United States. The strengthening flow from the northwest will help drive a cold front into Colorado on Saturday, bringing some scattered thunderstorms along for the ride.

By Sunday and Monday, cooler air will arrive in Colorado and highs will stay around 80 degrees on Sunday and just in the upper 70s for Labor Day. In the mountains, plan on some chilly nights with low to mid 30s early Sunday and Monday.

The air coming in behind the front should be pretty dry, so rain chances will be lower for the second part of the holiday weekend. We might get some more of that smoke flowing back into our skies as the winds behind the front will swirl into Colorado from the northwest.

Right now, the monthly outlook for September is calling for cooler than average conditions for most of Colorado with slightly above average precipitation. With the notable exception of 2013, September is typically a fairly dry month, so even with the rainfall outlook slightly elevated, it should still be a pleasant next few weeks.

It will not be long before those early reports of fall color begin to filter into the 7News Weather Center - keep your eyes open for the first glimpses of gold!


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