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Front Range snow forecast: How much to expect and where

Posted at 12:38 PM, May 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-08 14:38:37-04

DENVER — We're more than a week into May, but that's not stopping the snow.

The rainy weather this week was already turning to snow in the mountains and foothills west of Denver on Wednesday, and the snow coverage was expected to gradually move east throughout the day.

The heaviest snowfall totals will be in the mountains along I-70, where up to 16 inches could accumulate by Friday morning, according to the National Weather Service office in Boulder.

We won't see those kind of totals here in Denver. But we can expect 1-2 inches late Wednesday and into Thursday morning, with up to three inches by Friday. Suburbs to the south, toward the Palmer Divide, and to the west could see 3-6 inches above 6,000 feet.

What's a high-end possibility for the Front Range? The Weather Service gives Denver a 10% chance of seeing as much as five inches by 6 a.m. Friday, with as much as nine inches in Boulder and as much as five inches in Castle Rock.

Those are unlikely scenarios, but possible. The low-end totals – also a 10% chance – could be less than an inch in Denver, two inches in Boulder and four inches in Castle Rock.

Here's a more general idea of what we can expect by Friday morning – and where we'll see those amounts, according to the Weather Service.

Denver: 2-3 inches

Castle Rock: 3-4 inches

Boulder: 2-3 inches

Fort Collins: 1-2 inches

Estes Park: 4-6 inches

Winter Park: 4-6 inches:

Conifer: 8-12 inches

Colorado Springs: Less than one inch

Fairplay: 8-12 inches

Byers: 1-2 inches

What about the snowpack?

Colorado's snowpack,which has helped pull Colorado out of the severe drought conditions it experienced last year, was already at 135% of the median before this latest round of heavy snow, according to the Natural Resources Conservation Service of Colorado.

According to the NRCS models, this is the latest in the season that Colorado's snowpack has been this favorable since 2011.