4 Amazing Colorado Climate Regions

Introduction

There are many reasons why one might decide to move to Colorado. The gorgeous weather and climate is one of them. The last few years have been seen a steady growth in population for Colorado. The state has also enjoyed a steady and stable boost in economic growth all year round.

However, the fundamental reason why Colorado is becoming such a booming destination for people around the country is because of its impeccable climate! When the rest of the country thinks of Colorado, their minds most likely conjure up snow, skiing, and snowboarding images. And to their credit, that’s not far from the truth in the winter months. But summers can’t be overlooked. From whitewater rafting to outdoor concerts, there’s a little something for everyone!

Colorado is a calm state when it comes to weather. Whether it’s the dog days of summer or the throes of winter, you’ll find a moderate temperature year-round compared to other parts of the country. Temperatures can fluctuate wildly in as little as 12 hours, but overall, if you dress in layers when visiting, you’ll be able to handle anything thrown your way by Mother Nature.

When you move closer to the mountains, the temperatures fall no matter what time of the year you are in. When people think of Colorado, certain things come up in their mind. However, one of these things that do come up in their mind is a great misconception.

People often think that Colorado is all about snow and ice in the winter. They also believe that the state has little other to see apart from snow when they visit it in the winter. While this conception might be true when it comes to Colorado’s mountains, this is not the case when we talk about Denver or any of the other metropolitan areas of Colorado. The Denver metro area and surrounding areas don’t quite see as much snow as depicted in movies and TV. Colorado does see an intense summer thunderstorm season, which many outsiders are oblivious to.

One of Colorado’s most devastating weather events that leads to tens of millions of dollars in damage each year is hail. Summer thunderstorms in the late afternoon during this season sees to shut down parts of the metro area, destruction of cars, breaking windows, creation of flash floods at intersections, and wreaking havoc on whatever pocket they form over. The state is also very susceptible to dangerous hail during this season because of the Rocky Mountains.

These mountains let the rain fall on the state and stop winds that carry a lot of moisture. When this happens, the mountains, due to their size and height, allow rain to fall, turn to ice, get carried back up into the atmosphere, fall again, and continue to freeze until it’s heavy enough to do damage as hail. This hail is nothing short of a natural disaster for people over here because these ice blocks falling from the sky are hazardous to sensitive buildings, cars, shelters and unsuspecting passersby on the street!

Summer is a strange yet exciting time in the state of Colorado. The state sees a lot of thunderstorms during this time, many of which catch people off guard. These storms are known to hit unexpectedly, and hence, when they do hit, they hit hard. That is why you should keep in mind some things when travelling in Colorado during the summer months. It becomes essential for people who cross the state frequently to book flights early in the morning or later at night to avoid potential delays with air travel. When they move to Colorado and are looking to drive into the state, pulling off to the side of the road and waiting it out is the safest option.

Northern Colorado Climate

Northern Colorado is that part of the state where more prominent attractions for tourists and locals are present. The north features more significant destinations such as Boulder and Fort Collins, popular Coloradoans and Wyomingites. Cities like Boulder feature breweries, shopping, and more for travelers, especially during the summer months. Denver is cradled between the north and eastern part of the state but doesn’t see as much snowfall as other cities in the area. It is a lesser-known fact. The excessive snowfall in Colorado only occurs when you move closer to the mountains or on them. The hills here are known to be notorious for precipitation and snowfall, and rain is hardly new in the winter months. Not much snowfall or rainfall occurs in the metro parts of the state, which makes Colorado the best destination for tourists and people looking to stay for business.

Parts of Northern Colorado, particularly closer to the Wyoming border, sees cooler temperatures year-round and more snow than Denver and the surrounding areas. The closer people get to Wyoming on I-25, the windier it gets, too. Northern Colorado will see temperatures fluctuate from the low 30s to low 60s during winter and high 40s to low 90s during the summer.

Average High Temperature: 65 degrees °F

Average Low Temperature: 38 degrees °F

Average Temperature: 51 degrees °F

Average Rainfall: 20 inches

Average Snowfall: 89 inches

Southern Colorado Climate

This is the part of the state that houses the big cities. Here you can find the best infrastructure and the best overall development in healthcare, education and business. Southern Colorado and its major cities like Colorado Springs, Pueblo, and Trinidad see moderate temperatures year-round. Colorado Springs is a destination for travelers, featuring the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, The Broadmoor Hotel, and the Air Force Academy.

Snowfall often accumulates more during the winter months in Colorado Springs but not so much in cities further south as you get closer to New Mexico. The Colorado Springs area does get windy during the summer and fall months. Southern Colorado will see temperatures fluctuate from the high 10s to the upper 50s during winter and low 50s to mid-80s during summer.

Average High Temperature: 62 degrees °F

Average Low Temperature: 36 degrees °F

Average Temperature: 48 degrees °F

Average Rainfall: 16 inches

Average Snowfall: 39 inches

Eastern Colorado Climate

Eastern Colorado is the gateway to the eastern portion of the United States. Filled with flat land and cities here and there, you won’t find as much travelling in this direction as you will when visiting other parts of Colorado. There are festivals, farmer’s markets, and other quirky stops along the path out of the state through its eastern part.

Although Eastern Colorado is a little less developed than the other parts of the state, the region’s climate is more dangerous and concerning compared to them. This region is likely to have tornadoes spawn during the summer and be hit by punishing winds and snow in winter. Eastern Colorado is also more likely to see hail during those summer thunderstorms. It will see temperatures fluctuate from the low 20s to mid-50s during winter and low 40s to the low 90s in summer.

Average High Temperature: 64 degrees °F

Average Low Temperature: 36 degrees °F

Average Temperature: 49 degrees °F

Average Rainfall: 15 inches

Average Snowfall: 55 inches

Western Colorado Climate

Western Colorado is the region of the state that houses the mighty Rocky Mountains. Its beautiful Rocky Mountain backdrop is almost like another state entirely when it comes to weather. From ski resorts to mountain towns, National and State Parks to visit, the river runs, hiking trails, and everything you could imagine you could do outdoors—western Colorado is the destination for outdoor enthusiasts.

Snow can accumulate year-round, even in summer, when the temperatures start to dip closer to fall. The majority of snow in the state falls across the mountains, with temperatures getting the coldest for travelers during the Spring, fall, and winter months. Western Colorado will see temperatures fluctuate from the low 10s to the high 30s during winter and low 30s to upper 70s in the summer months.

Average High Temperature: 54 degrees °F

Average Low Temperature: 22 degrees °F

Average Temperature: 37 degrees °F

Average Rainfall: 23 inches

Average Snowfall: 175 inches

Colorado Seasonal Climate

Spring in Colorado

Temperature-wise, Spring is enjoyable across the state. In contrast, Spring is generally a little nippy when it comes to regions near the Rocky Mountains or places deep within Western Colorado, the other parts of the state experience milder conditions. As I mentioned before, the mountains can still see snowfall well into May, as can the metro areas. Spring can be fickle with fog rolling in one morning and a freeze alert the following evening. Temperatures during Spring can go from blazing hot one day to cold within 12 hours. That is why people who love snow and the winter always prefer to stay in the Western parts of the state because that is where all the coldness lies!

Summer in Colorado

Summer in Colorado is dry and hot. This climate, however, is not inclusive of the thunderstorms that the region often sees in the summers. With temperatures constantly breaking 100 degrees °F in Denver and the surrounding area, it can be overwhelming for travelers not used to being a mile above sea level. Afternoon thunderstorms are frequent, often coming out of nowhere, bringing with them wind, torrential rain, thunder and lightning, and hail in the thick of it. These are the things you should keep in mind when you decide to move to Colorado.

Also check this article: The Best Time To Visit California

Fall in Colorado

Colorado sees a mild fall climate, just like Spring. However, unlike Spring, fall is a lot less predictable. Conditions and weather can change at a moment’s notice. Snow in the fall can come to the state as early as late September, especially if you decide to move to Western Colorado, closer to the Rocky Mountains. In the west, the wind picks up as winter gets closer, leading to leaves falling from trees and making it much colder than the temperature suggests.

Winter in Colorado

Winter in Colorado can be brutal, especially if travelling to the mountains. Temperatures will drop, the wind chill will freeze you to the bone, and the occasional blizzard will shut down cities like Boulder, Denver, and Colorado Springs down wholly. Be prepared for winter driving with ice, wind, and poor visibility at a moment’s notice. However, the western part of the state is a dream come true for travelers and people who love sub-zero temperatures and snowfall almost all year round. Summers are enjoyable in the mountains, even though these winters can be fierce.

Colorado Weather Stats

Here are a few things you should know before you move about how Colorado weather compares!

  • Colorado gets 16 inches of rain, on average, per year. The US average is 38 inches of rain per year.
  • Colorado averages 63 inches of snow per year. The US average is 28 inches of snow per year.
  • Colorado gets some precipitation, on average, 82 days per year.
  • August is the wettest month in Colorado with 2.2 inches of rain, and the driest month is January with 0.6 inches. The wettest season is Autumn, with 37% of yearly precipitation and 12% occurs in Spring, which is the driest season. Colorado’s average annual rainfall of 16.3 inches indicates that it is drier than most states in the United States.
  • Colorado’s average annual snowfall of 63.3 inches indicates that it is one of the snowiest states in the United States. March is the snowiest month in Colorado with 11.5 inches of snow, and nine months of the year have significant snowfall.

Conclusion

So, here are some of the climates that Colorado has to offer all the people who want to move there. With delightful springs and falls, the state is a heaven for people who love to see the flowers bloom, or the leaves dry up. Winters are nippy, and summers are stormy with a few specks of plentiful sunshine in between!

All in all, this is all the climate information you need before you move to Colorado!

Check out some of our other climate guides on Annual Weather.

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