Think it's cool in Michigan? A 60 degree drop and snow is coming for Colorado

From mid 90s to mid 30s in just 3 days!
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Posted at 11:16 AM, Sep 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-05 11:18:30-04

While our mornings have been in the 50s and our highs in the 70s here in West Michigan, it will be a far cry from where places in Colorado will be this next week. In fact, if you're an investor, temperatures and conditions over the next few days will resemble the rise and fall of the Dow Jones and Nasdaq this past Thursday and Friday. After a super high climb, the bottom will literally fall out with highs dropping 60 degrees or more in just three days with accumulating snow quite likely.

Take a look at the weather/surface map below from the Weather Prediction Center. All the green on the map signifies precipitation, while the blue over Colorado shows snow. The map is valid for Tuesday.

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It may be a tad early for Colorado snow, but frankly I've been in the Rockies in Estes National Park in early September when they do receive snow (sometimes several inches) in the higher elevations. What's wild about this is temperatures on Sunday expected in the low/mid 90s, then dropping like a rock into the 30s with snow on Tuesday. But what's driving the huge change? An upper level low pressure system and "trough" in our jet stream will allow temperatures to plummet (temporarily) for the central and northern Rockies. Take a look at the position of the jet stream on Tuesday below. This is a forecast model showing the approximate position of our fast-moving upper level winds. You can see the huge trough or dip in the central Rockies over Colorado and the "L" in the area. The bright colors of yellow, orange, and red denote the upper level spin and energy at 500 millibar or 18,000 foot level that provide dynamical cooling and lift.


Our last snapshot is from the National Weather Service and their probability of snowfall. The image only goes out until Tuesday, but already look at the chance for six inches or more across Wyoming. If we could extrapolate the image further out, we would find the snow possibility would extend well into Colorado.

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Check out the National Weather Service zone forecast for Colorado here. Pay particular attention to the Sunday versus Tuesday. Quite remarkable...from low/mid 90s to mid/upper 30s with snow in many spots...especially the higher elevations. We'll hear more about this next week.

This system will not bring snow to West Michigan, but it will cool our temperatures off and likely bring rain by Thursday and Friday next week. Get our complete West Michigan forecast at