Recalling the Holly Tornado and Extreme Fire Danger Now

Five years ago today, the small town of Holly, Colorado was struck by and EF3 tornado.  Just to the north of town, there was even some EF4 damage to a farm house.  That means wind speeds in excess of 150 mph were common along the tornado's path.  It struck with little warning and was responsible for two deaths.  Tornado deaths in Colorado are extremely rare, and this was the first since 1960.  The weather conditions that day produced wildfires and very strong wind for most.  However, enough moisture and instability backed it's way westward from Kansas by evening, to develop severe storms.  Unfortunately, one of those was a killer.

Wiki also describes the event pretty accurately:

Quite a different story going on right now.  Moisture to get thunderstorms going is nowhere near our great state, and that means drought and fire danger are the story.  The Lower North Fork Fire just to the southwest of Denver is responsible for burning 4000 acres, destroying over 25 homes, and has killed two people. 

Denver has not received any snow during the month of March and no precipitation at all.  This will be the driest March and the least snowy March on record for Denver.  March and April are the snowiest months for Colorado, and the current weather pattern is not favoring us getting any good moisture anytime soon.  If we can get through this dry time without another catastrophe, it will be a miracle...

Chief Meteorologist Brian Bledsoe

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