Okay. I’ll admit it. I am a weather chaser. No, I am not a lunatic that races across the country with a million pieces of crazy equipment trying to find the center of a tornado, nor do I go out of my way to drive in snowstorms although I love winter driving. However, I do find myself out on the porch (way too long) during thunderstorms and I keep an eye on the sky for tornadoes for I have seen several since moving to Colorado.
My husband took this photo from his office
Boulder may seem like a quaint and quiet community for some, but after living here for almost 25 years, I know otherwise. Being situated in a valley while kissing the toes of the Rocky Mountain foothills, can make for some amazing weather. Some may think that the Windy City is located in Chicago, but that, my friends, only refers to the political wind bags. Boulder truly is the Windy City. Temperatures have heated up in the Front Range this week while a cold front coming in from the west continued to dump snow in the mountains so I expected wind. It did not surprise me when they surpassed hurricane force.
There have been high-profile vehicle warnings all day! On my way home from an appointment, I saw a huge semi that had flipped over. I snapped a photo while stopped in traffic. When I got home, I took some video on the deck then noticed smoke rising from the valley. It is scary enough to hear my house being pummeled by gusts, but watching a fire being fought in 90 mph wind gusts can be especially terrifying when they are coming from only 3 miles away.
Knowing the accessibility of the fire and the fact that it would have to skip over a highway to reach our house, I went back to my computer. Then I heard a big “BOOM!” I raced to look out the window and our antique iron glider had been pitched against the railing. While it banged away, I tried to slide open the door, but the westerly wind blasted into the room and threatened to level everything inside my house. I went to a door on the leeward side to see what had crashed. After stepping back outside while leaning into the wind to move forward, I found several big heavy concrete roofing tiles that had fallen right where I stepped moments ago. It had officially become hard hat weather.
Years ago, I watched our 250 pound trampoline skitter through our backyard and disappear in high velocity winds clocked at over 120 MPH in Niwot. I raced outside and found it lodged in tree at the top of the block, threatening to flip into our neighbor’s picture window. I ran home and got a knife to cut the center of the tramp which deflated its sail. That day many car doors caught the wind and bent backwards. Light fixtures were sheared off houses. Patio sets were scattered and glass shattered as they were lifted up in the wind and thrown like paper plates. Anything that wasn’t nailed down blew to Kansas.
I turned on the TV and the fire is 100% contained, but 80 MPH winds will continue through tonight and tomorrow. It could be a long night, but lots of snow is falling in the mountains. God, how I love Colorado! It’s always a Wild Ride!
Do you ever get wild weather where you live?
All photos and video by Susie Lindau
Extreme weather… here, things have been quite tepid, what with a non-winter. Four years ago, 120 inches of snow, this year, ten. Crazy.
That is a huge difference.
The wind is kicking up again, but nothing like yesterday. Whew!
Wow! That is quite the weather you have out there! I’d love to visit Boulder, spent some time in the Denver area last summer and fell in love with the rock climbing. I lived in Dutch Harbor, Alaska for 4 years growing up and we get these winter blizzards called “williwaws” that are basically hurricanes sweeping through the Bering Sea – it was wild!
Oh I bet it was! There is nothing like ocean effect storms. I have never heard of the term Williwaws. Love it!
Thanks for reading!
Susie, I totally understand wind gusts coming off the mountain. We used to live a the tip of the Sierra Nevadas and literally we kept a spare square of roofing shingles in our garage because the winds would get so bad they would flap in the wind and you could hear them rip off the roof. It drove my husband nuts. And no hair spray worked against that force of nature! But the upside is snow. And you’ve been having a great time lately girl. I’m glad the fires out. But we call them wind of war! LOL! I can’t say that we miss it. The winds that is. Take care Susie! 🙂
Thanks Karen! We have a stack too!
We do get the snow as a bonus and have the wonderful mountains to gaze at every day. Dang down-sloping winds!!
That weather is quite strange and scary! Where I currently live, the weather is not anything extreme like the weather you spoke off, more annoying in terms of temperature mood swings than anything serious.
But the motto is that it’s ”The only place where you experience the four seasons in one hour.’
They say that here too! Boulder County has a record of snow in all months out of the year except for July…
I am glad that it is calm once again. I love your reference to temperature mood swings – excellent!
I live in the midwest near Chicago. Hot air from the politicians is not the only thing that blows around here. Tornado season ends when the cold winds of November blow in. This winter we had Thunder Snow, lightning and thunder during snow storms.
Holy cats! That is crazy weather. You are one brave woman, Susie. Definitely be safe and don’t do anything too crazy in the name of adventure. Fires terrify me, probably because we get so many devastating ones – those men and women who had to fight that one in 80 mile an hour winds? Totally heroes.
There were a couple of fires that day from fallen power lines. I had never been afraid to go out in the wind until I saw those tiles. Whew! It wasn’t my time yet……….Thanks Tameri!
Forget the dogs. That wind damn near blew me away. I stopped on a dirt road near our house that night and got out to look at the stars. I quickly grabbed the door frame of the car to keep from being blown over. It was a chore to keep the door from slamming on my shins getting in and out, too. It was amazing.
Thanks for the pics and the blog, Susie. 🙂
You have to be especially careful of car doors. They are so dangerous with the wind. It was so warm outside yesterday when we skied at Beaver Creek. We stayed and relaxed in the late afternoon sunshine. Now I think we are supposed to get snow again. You gotta love Colorado weather!
Thanks for stopping by!
Wow, that was quite a blast of air to turn that rig over…looks like it parted the clouds overhead as well. I am a lot like you, something about the negative Ions in a storm maybe…Just makes me feel alive.
After losing two homes to hurricanes, I can recall viewing most of several hurricanes since,..from my front porch.