May 2017 lived up to what we expect in a Colorado spring, it was a rollercoaster ride that featured everything from a late season snowstorm to damaging baseball sized hail hitting the Northwestern parts of Denver. We generally see an uptick in severe weather during the month of May but despite a few big, newsworthy storms it was a relatively quiet month. The big news is that the snow storm coupled with an overly wet pattern has put Colorado drought free statewide! This is great news, we hope the trend continues into June all indications are that for at least the first half of June, we could continue our wetter pattern.
May 2017 was the first month we've seen in quite awhile that actually finished with lower than average temperatures for the month! The cooler temperatures were very welcome after a stretch of several abnormally warm months throughout the fall, winter and spring season.
The monthly mean temperature for Castle Rock finished at 53.48 degrees which is 2.02 degrees below average.
We had to track both snowfall and rainfall this month as we saw a large, late season snowstorm drop anywhere between 4-12 inches in and around Castle Rock (depending on where you lived.) We officially recorded 6.2 inches at our station in the Meadows. While snow is no stranger to the month of May along Colorado's front range, this particular storm was quite cold and wet for so late in the season. Additionally, the weather pattern has brought several wet, soaking storm systems to the region meaning that May 2017 finished well above average in terms of precipitation.
Total liquid precipitation for Castle Rock finished at 3.60 inches which is 1.42 inches above average.
Snowfall for Castle Rock finished at 6.2 inches which is 5.5 inches above average!
Current Drought Conditions
The latest drought monitor update for the state of Colorado shows no drought conditions at all in the state! This is the first time this has happened since 2001 but it's interesting to note the drought monitor was only started in 2000.
Keep in mind, even with the wet conditions we have now that we can still see drought conditions re-develop into the summer and late fall. Currently we don't see an extended period of heat or dryness that will change this in the near future, but we'll keep an eye on it!