Review of the Rain and Snow Event of October 8

First Winter Storm of the Season
Saturday October 8th, 2011
 
A significant rain and snow event occurred across much of southeast Wyoming and the western Nebraska Panhandle on Saturday October 8th as a very strong area of low pressure moved across the central Rockies. The eastward-advancing low pressure system was not only accompanied by a considerable amount of cold air, but also an abundance of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico and strong upslope flow over the Snowy and Laramie mountain ranges. This resulted in very heavy snow over north-facing slopes, as well as the adjacent high plains as snow levels rapidly lowered to around 5,500 feet above sea level. A few rumbles of thunder also accompanied a band of intense snowfall over the city of Cheyenne during the early afternoon hours on Saturday. The precipitation fell as predominantly rain across areas to the north and east, with little or no snowfall observed at elevations below 5,500 feet. This opened the door for significant rainfall across east central Wyoming and the western Nebraska Panhandle.
 
In general, 4 to 8 inches of snow was common across much of south central and southeastern Wyoming, with a few isolated reports of up to 12 inches over the southern Laramie Range. The heavy, wet nature of the snowfall also caused stress on area trees and power lines. A few large tree branches were downed, and several power outages were reported in and around the city of Cheyenne on Saturday evening, lasting up to 40 hours. A prolonged period of moderate to heavy rain affected areas that did not receive significant snow. A few locations across east central Wyoming and the western Nebraska Panhandle received 2 to 3 inches of rain.
 
The topographic maps below show selected snow and liquid precipitation reports across southeast Wyoming and the western Nebraska Panhandle, ending at 7:00 AM MDT on Sunday, October 9th.
 

 

 
 
 
 


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