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Denver Weather: Winter Storm Watch Issued For Snow, 70 Degree Temp Drop By Tuesday

DENVER (CBS4) - After a high of 101 degrees in Denver on Saturday and two more days in the 90s on the way this headline feels surreal to write, but I can assure you, it's not "fake" news. A major change in the forecast will arrive sometime after sunset on Monday night.

Today will feature more widespread 90s and 100s across the lower elevations with 80s in the mountains. Denver's record high of 97 degrees will be at risk this afternoon.

With the continued hot and dry weather we have two more days with fire weather concern and Red Flag Warnings. A lot of smoke will remain in the air and it'll be dense at times, especially in parts of Larimer County.

High pressure currently dominating Colorado's weather will retrograde to the west over the next 48 hours. That ridge will build north into southern Alaska. At the same time an equally large trough of low pressure will develop over the Rocky Mountains and that will open the door for record cold air to flow straight out of the arctic.

The National Weather Service has already issued a Freeze Watch for northwest Colorado where temperatures by Tuesday morning could fall as low as the middle 20s. We may see additional freeze alerts issued.

Right now it looks like the cold front will enter northern Colorado sometime after sunset on Monday with rain developing by midnight. It will change to snow toward sunrise on Tuesday. Snow is possible most of the day on Tuesday and it could even linger into the early morning hours on Wednesday.

As far as snow amounts go we have a lot of things to consider, including how warm it has been and how high the early September sun angle is in Colorado. But having said that we do expect some accumulation in addition to a lot of melting.

Because the snow will be heavy and wet it won't take much to create problems on our trees since they still have their leaves. We are also very concerned about exposed pipes on sprinkler systems. Your buried lines will be ok! But pipes coming out of your home will need to be protected.

After a few unusually cold days we will start a warming trend as we approach the upcoming weekend. Highs in Denver will return to the 80s by early next week.

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