Warm, dry weather to increase fire danger again with temperatures across Colorado 10 to 15 degrees above normal
SUMMIT COUNTY — A strong ridge of high pressure is in place over the Great Basin and will continue to be the main factor shaping high country weather for the coming week bringing sunny skies and the potential for increased fire danger, with no moisture in the forecast. A slight shift of the ridge to the east late in the week could open the door for a bit of subtropical moisture in what would be an unusual late-season monsoon pattern.
Highs will range from the upper 60s and into the 70s, which is about 10 to 15 degrees above normal for this time of year, and record highs are possible at some locations across western Colorado, especially Monday afternoon, according to the National Weather Service. Other spots across the West are also forecast to reach record highs, including Salt Lake City, where temperatures will reach the 90s. Many locations in California are also expecting record-high readings this coming week.
Frisco’s average high for Sept. 26 is 61 degrees and the record for the date is 77 degrees. Low temperatures will also remain above normal. Frisco’s average readings for late September are in the upper 20s. Forecast lows the next few days are in the mid-30s.
Early Sunday morning, Leadville reported a reading at the freezing mark, with Vail Pass at 29 degrees. But temperatures at higher mountain stations were warmer, with 35 degrees at Copper Mountain (10,500 feet), 41 degrees at Loveland Pass (11.399 feet), 40 degrees at Fremont Pass (11,399 feet), 44 degrees at Hoosier Pass (11,399 feet) and 42 degrees at Grizzly Peak (11,100 feet).
Dry air and longer nights will allow for strong radiational cooling the next few nights, but it’s not clear if mountain temperatures will drop down into the snowmaking range this week.
The nation’s hot spot Saturday was Death Valley, at 112 degrees, with the coldest reading reported in Yellowstone, Montana, at 23 degrees. The National Weather Service also reported that Philadelphia recorded its hottest summer on record, on the heels of the snowiest winter ever in the City of Brotherly Love.