Crank up those air conditioners: triple-digit heat could well be on its way later this week.
Temperatures could reach 100 degrees in Denver later this week as the hottest weather so far this year moves into the Front Range and most of Colorado.
After starting the work week with readings in the low 90s, temperatures will gradually build as the week wears on, with triple digits possible in the Front Range by the end of the week and into the weekend. Eastern plains locations could hit 100 degrees or above several times this week.
The last time Denver hit 100 degrees was back on Sept. 2, when Denver set its latest 100-degree reading on record. Denver averages one 100-degree day per year, according to long-term statistics from the National Weather Service. In 2012, Denver hit 100 degrees 13 times that year, making it the most 100 degree days in the city’s recorded history.
Denver could tie or break daily records on Thursday (current daily record: 98 degrees in 1989), Friday (102 degrees, 2016) or Saturday (102 degrees, 1954).
A pronounced and prolonged ridge of high pressure will be the main driver behind this week’s exceptional and potential triple-digit heat. In the tweet below, watch how the bulk of the heat concentrates over the southern and central Rockies and Plains for several days.
A ridge of high pressure, simply put, is when widespread sinking air compresses. When that happens, air particles accelerate, which is a warming process. High pressure also typically stifles rain chances, as clouds and precipitation from air rises rather than descends.
This prolonged heat wave will also keep fire danger especially high for much of this week. Hot temperatures, gusty winds and a low moisture content to the air will combine to keep fire danger high throughout most of this week and likely continuing into next weekend.
“Elevated fire danger should continue through the rest of the week as the hot and dry weather persists,” the National Weather Service office in Boulder wrote in their detailed forecast discussion on Sunday.
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