Jack Frost is coming before Oct. 15

Staff reports Published: October 4, 2013 | 7:52 am 0

We've seen a lot of crazy weather this year, but it's not supposed to freeze for at least several more days in the Colorado Springs area.

When will Jack Frost make his first appearance? When will you have to cover tomatoes or disconnect the hose?

Of course that's impossible to predict for sure, but the National Weather Service can provide us with the history, as well as educated guesses for the probability for when the first freeze will occur.

For instance, the earliest first freeze on record for Colorado Springs occurred Sept. 1, 1911 - 102 years ago. The latest first freeze happened on Oct. 31, 1963.

If the 10-day weather forecast is correct, there is a decent chance of reaching a low of 30 degrees in Colorado Springs on Friday. According to the NWS probabilities for annual weather events, there is a 50 percent chance of a freeze in the city by Oct. 3 of any given year. There is a 90 percent chance there will be a freeze by Oct. 15.

If you dislike it that winter is coming too soon, consider that it could be worse. You could live in Alamosa, where the altitude is 7,544 feet.

The NWS says that the earliest first freeze in Alamosa occurred on Aug. 9, 2009. The latest first freeze recorded there was Oct. 3, 1990, and there is a 90 percent probability every year that the first freeze will occur by Sept. 28. And yes, the forecast called for a low of 32 degrees in Alamosa on Sept. 28.

If you want the warm weather to last just a bit longer and you can't afford to go to Costa Rica, drive to Pueblo, where the lower elevation of 4,662 feet gives, on average, about a week's worth of relief.

The earliest first freeze in Pueblo was Sept. 9, 2001.

If you don't care for the government's predictions and prefer the Old Farmer's Almanac, here is that publication's prediction for November 2013 to October 2014 for the region including Colorado:

"Winter will be much snowier than normal, with near-normal rainfall. The snowiest periods will be in late November, early and mid-December, mid- and late January, mid-February, and early March. Temperatures will be below normal in the north and near normal in the south, with the coldest periods in mid-December, mid- and late January, and in early to mid-February."

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Contact Barry Noreen at 636-0363 or barry.noreen@gazette.com.

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