Memorial Day Weekend Forecast: Showers and Storms Possible

Saturady, 1:05pm: Live Blog: Tornado Watch issued for eastern Colorado


After more light rain overnight and another 0.12" precipitation in the rain gauge downtown, we should dry things out for a few hours and warm up a bit today too. A look at the latest satellite imagery shows some clearing to our south, which should work north during the morning hours.

Morning clearing across southern Colorado, moving north

By this afternoon the storm chances increase once more, and with clearing skies this morning and warmer temperatures than we've seen in several days, this should work to help fuel some severe storms across the Plains later in the day.

The current outlook from the SPC puts a narrow area across northeast Colorado under a Slight Risk for severe storms today, with 5% tornado probabilities. This area is focused along the Palmer Ridge, along and north of I-70, and south of I-76.

SPC severe weather outlook Friday

Here's a look at the 12z HRRR simulated radar forecast for this afternoon. It develops a few strong storms near the metro area, which move east into the early evening hours.

HRRR forecast | Weather2580 Models

Saturday severe weather outlook
Storms will again be likely across eastern Colorado Saturday, with a greater area under the threat for severe weather. Denver will be on the western edge of the severe threat, with the greatest threat east of the metro area. The chance for storms in Denver Saturday will be from about 30 to 40%.

SPC severe weather outlook Saturday

Saturday's greatest severe threat will likely be hail and wind, but certainly the potential for tornadoes as well. As another large upper level feature moves east tonight we should see a surface low develop east of the mountains tomorrow which will help promote storm development. By 21z Saturday the NAM has CAPE values >1900 across northeast Colorado, which is plenty high for strong storms in Colorado.

WeatherBell Models

Sunday and Memorial Day
By Sunday the severe weather threat should diminish. Temperatures will cool a few degrees, with a continued chance for showers and possibly a few storms across the region. Highs should top out in the low 60s for Denver.

For the time being, Memorial Day looks to be the driest of the next 3 days, with isolated to scattered storms, and highs in the mid to upper 60s. The severe threat should be low as well.

Brendan Heberton

Brendan is founder of Weather5280. He is co-founder of FreshyMap, and develops software for geospatial data analysis and visualization.

Denver, Colorado
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