City of Steamboat saw 21 inches of snow in October

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— For the second straight month, Steamboat Springs has had substantially higher than normal precipitation.

Unofficial National Weather Service observer Art Judson reported Thursday morning that his weather station between downtown and the mountain received 3.25 inches of precipitation, 50 percent more than the average for the month. And although it did not stick to the ground, the 21 inches of snow that fell in the city in October was well above the normal 6.4 inches as recorded by the National Climatic Data Center.

Judson’s final October measurement was taken at 7 a.m. Thursday and as snow continued to fall on All Hallow’s Eve, anything that accumulated was counted toward the total for November when, on average, 25.4 inches fall in the city.

The Weather Service was forecasting Thursday afternoon that overnight snowfall into Friday would be light, but the automated forecast for Storm Peak, at 10,200 feet elevation at Steamboat Ski Area, was more bullish.

With the forecast calling for up to 3 inches during the day, the upper mountain was expected to get an additional 2 to 4 inches by Friday morning. There also was a chance that the snow would get redistributed by a west wind of 20 to 25 miles per hour at that elevation.

The October snow total in town was driven by the 10.5 inches reported Oct. 4 and followed up by another 3.5 inches the next day. All told, there were eight days in October when measurable snow fell. The third highest total was the 3.4 inches that fell Oct. 30.

The wettest month of 2013 was September, with 4.44 inches of precipitation. That compares to the September average of 2.19 inches. Steamboat blew past normal September moisture levels with seven straight days of rain that ended on the sixteenth of the month.

Although daytime highs in October were relatively mild, there were 24 subfreezing nights at Judson’s weather station. The other side of that story is represented by the 13 days when the temperature rose above 60 degrees.

Steamboat residents could catch another brief interlude of pleasant fall conditions during the weekend when skies are expected to be sunny both Saturday and Sunday with high temperatures of 51 and 50, respectively.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205, email tross@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ThomasSRoss1

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