Mother Nature is keeping things interesting for Colorado Springs residents by breaking the all-time high temperature record for Dec. 18, with a balmy 65 degrees reported at 1:03 p.m., according to the National Weather Service.
Denver also set a record when the temperature hit 68 degrees at 1:29 p.m., surpassing the 1917 record of 67 degrees, the weather service said. Pueblo was unseasonably warm at 68 degrees, but did not reach its 70-degree record high.
The former record high of 63 degrees on Dec. 18 in Colorado Springs was set in 1919 and tied in 1958, said meteorologist Larry Walrod.
"We're definitely above average temps for the Pikes Peak region," Walrod said. "The usual range during this time of year is between 40 to 45 degrees."
A tie for the record was forecast between 2 and 3 p.m., Walrod said, but weather service meteorologist Randy Gray confirmed temperature readings at 65 degrees earlier than expected.
Just to shake things up, a nearly 30-degree drop and slight chance of snow are in the local forecast for this week.
As El Paso County enjoys warm temperatures and sunny skies, a weather system from Canada is approaching and expected to cool things off, possibly bringing about an inch of snow to the Front Range by the weekend.
"Temperatures will begin to taper off. Tomorrow we'll still be above average with a high of 53 in Colorado Springs," Walrod said. "But once that Canadian front pushes in Thursday evening, it will bring some precipitation and increasing clouds. It will definitely feel a lot more like December."
Friday's forecast high in Colorado Springs is 39 degrees, and temperatures are expected to be in the 30s through the weekend, according to the weather service. A second low-pressure system is expected early next week, but temperatures won't get above the mid-40s, Walrod said.
"It's tricky to say what it's going to look like for Christmas, because it's still several days in advance and the weather models flip-flop a lot that far off," he said. "But there's a chance we could have a white Christmas."