Denver Hasn't Seen Measurable Snow in 222 Days, This Hasn't Happened Since the 1880s

Denver has not recorded any measurable snowfall in at least 222 days, marking the first time the Colorado city hasn't been blanketed in winter weather in that long since the 1880s.

Denver is just days away from surpassing its second and third-longest consecutive streaks without measurable snowfall, local news channel KDVR reported Monday.

In 1889, the city recorded 224 days without measurable snow, while in 1888 there were 227 days. Now, the city may be on its way to surpassing both records as meteorologist Chris Tomer told KDVR that there isn't a snow forecast for at least another week.

Only time will tell whether or not Denver could surpass its longest-ever streak without measurable snow, which was recorded at 235 days in 1887, according to the news channel. The National Weather Service (NWS) defines measurable snowfall as one-tenth of an inch or more. Though Denver has had some light dusting of snowflakes so far, it hasn't accumulated enough to reach those standards.

Denver's lack of snow also comes as the city has been experiencing unusually warm temperatures this month. On Monday, KDVR forecast a high temperature of 70 degrees, which is 23 degrees warmer than average for this time of year. Monday's forecast follows after the city saw temperatures in the high 60s and 50s throughout the weekend, according to the Denver Post.

On November 6, Denver broke a record with 80-degree weather, surpassing a previous high of 79 degrees recorded that day in 1934, the Post reported. That number was tied for the second-highest November temperature ever recorded in Denver.

Denver Snow
Denver hasn't recorded measurable snowfall in 222 days—which hasn't happened since the 1880s. Here, snow falls outside the Colorado State Capitol building in Denver, Colorado, on September 8, 2020. ELI IMADALI/AFP/Getty Images

The warmer temperatures and lack of snow coincide with a La Niña weather event, which is returning to the U.S. for the second winter in a row. According to an October forecast by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), La Niña will cause the southern U.S. to experience warmer temperatures and less precipitation, while the northern U.S. and Canada will have a cooler, wetter, season.

La Niña is one of two opposing climate conditions in the Pacific Ocean (the other being El Niño) that break normal trade wind patterns. Together, two phenomena are collectively known as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) cycle.

La Niña is expected to cause nearly the entire state of Colorado to see above-average temperatures this winter, while drought conditions across the Western Slope and northern part of the state are expected to get worse, according to Axios.

"Consistent with typical La Nina conditions during winter months, we anticipate below-normal temperatures along portions of the northern tier of the U.S. while much of the South experiences above-normal temperatures," Jon Gottschalck, chief, Operational Prediction Branch of NOAA's Climate Prediction Center said in a statement in October.

"The Southwest will certainly remain a region of concern as we anticipate below-normal precipitation where drought conditions continue in most areas," Gottschalck added.