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Snow, freezing temps could relieve Colorado of Red Flag weather conditions: What to expect

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Posted at 10:47 AM, Oct 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-22 14:50:24-04

UPDATE (12:49 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 22): We have a newly updated story on what to expect from Colorado's weather over the next several days, including red flag warnings again Thursday and a snowstorm on Sunday. Click here for the latest.


DENVER — Get ready for an extreme change in the weather — and that should be a good thing for crews battling Colorado's burning wildfires.

While firefighters were bracing for another day of tough conditions Wednesday, with expected gusts up to 50 mph across the Front Range mountains and foothills and a high fire danger through Thursday.

A cold front will move into Colorado on Thursday and drop temperatures into the afternoon, according to the latest forecast discussion from the National Weather Service.

A slight chance of freezing drizzle will be possible for northern Colorado on Thursday night, though we'll likely just see an overall cooldown, with temperatures falling into the lower 20s by Friday morning.

In the high country Friday, southwest winds will create warmer and drier conditions again. But by Saturday, another cold will drop into Colorado, bringing a surge of colder air and the likelihood of snow on Saturday night and into Sunday morning.

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The precipitation could begin as rain, though it should become cold enough to produce snow. The snow could continue into Monday, if the system lingers over the Front Range. Projections on how much snow we'll see weren't available yet Wednesday.

One thing we know for sure: We're in for a cold weekend.

When the second cold front moves into Colorado on Saturday night, temperatures in Denver will drop into the low 20s and stay there into Monday, possibly dropping into the teens for lows.

A good snow would bring much-needed precipitation to the area.

The Denver area saw its first snow of the season in early September but the weather has mostly dried out over the last month.

Crews continue to battle the sprawling Cameron Peak Fire in western Larimer County and the Calwood and Lefthand Canyon fires in Boulder County, which have impacted thousands of residents since the weekend.