Is another bomb cyclone coming to Denver?

By Jim Lawson on January 11, 2024
Is another bomb cyclone coming to Denver?
(Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Is another bomb cyclone coming to Denver?

The last time we remember hearing the words “bomb cyclone” in Denver was in March of 2019, and that storm ended up being one of the most brutal we can remember.  We just may have another one.

Our friends at 9News say over the course of the next week, a formidable winter weather pattern is expected to develop, featuring a potential bomb cyclone followed by a polar vortex. The intense winds are a result of a storm system that is beginning to form in the Rocky Mountain region. The impact on the Front Range is projected to be minimal:  Today (Jan. 10), as the storm system gains strength, it will bring moderate snowfall to the nearby mountains and perhaps a light dusting of snow to certain areas of the Front Range in the morning. However, the storm is anticipated to intensify into a powerful cyclone as it progresses towards the eastern states of Colorado.

A Bomb Cyclone occurs when a high-pressure mass encounters a low-pressure air mass, resulting in the formation of a powerful storm. The movement of air from high to low pressure generates winds. The distinguishing characteristic of a bomb cyclone is the rapid decrease in pressure within the low-pressure mass, typically by at least 24 millibars in 24 hours. This significant drop in pressure intensifies the pressure gradient between the two air masses, leading to stronger winds.

Like most Colorado weather, this bomb cyclone may not happen and if it does, it should be much less impactful that the one in 2019. 


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