Denverites could not be blamed for looking back on December 2012 and thinking it was miserably cold. However while this was true for the end of the month, overall it actually ended up warmer and drier than normal.
December started out very mild with the first eight days seeing overall average temperatures 12.7 degrees above normal. Colder air moved in after that for a few days before above normal temperatures returned again and continued through the 18th.
Another three day cold spell arrived but mild temperatures returned on the 21st. Christmas Eve ushered in a big chill that lingered through the end of the month.
Overall December’s average temperature in Denver as measured at Denver International Airport was 31.2 degrees. This was 1.2 degrees above the 1981 to 2000 average of 31.0 degrees.
Denver temperatures ranged from a high of 69 degrees on the 5th down to a bitter cold low of -2 on the 26th. Eight days failed to reach high temperatures above the freezing mark in the Mile High City and it recorded two days with low temperatures at or below zero.
Precipitation as recorded at DIA was slightly below normal during December. 0.27 inch was recorded as compared to the average of 0.35 inch.
Snowfall fell short of average as well during the month as Denver recorded only 5.2 inches. On average the Mile High City records 8.4 inches during the month.
With the end of the month, Denver’s 2012 – 2013 seasonal snowfall total falls further behind average. To date it is 8.8 inches below normal. While the snowpack has rebounded considerably thanks to the storms in the latter half of the month, it is currently at 72% of normal.