I’ve lived in Fort Collins now for 2.5 years so this will be my third spring here. This also means that I’ve survived a third winter in Northern CO, and am happy to declare that they are on the whole quite nice—if a little unpredictable.
To summarize the last three winters:
- 2005-2006: One of the warmest on record with very little snow. I still remember cycling on December 28th with Sandi up to 8000 feet in elevation and having to strip down because it was so warm (60 degrees). Sunny virtually every single day and probably the best winter I’ve ever experienced in my life, which made training for an April Ironman triathlon very possible.
- 2006-2007: It still probably snowed no more than 10 days all season, but a couple of these days produced the longest-lasting snow Fort Collins had ever seen. For the first time in its history, the City of FC even plowed all the neighborhood streets (it normally only does the major arteries). Still—except for a few days after the initial 24-inches-in-24-hours barrage—I didn’t think the winter was “that bad.” It did make for some nice snowshoeing and skiing opportunities around town.
- 2007-2008: The amount of snow FC got in December (a total of 8″?) wasn’t too abnormal, but then it barely snowed in January-March. However, temperatures were lower than normal. Then, we repeatedly got false calls for spring, with 50-60 degree days interrupted by snowfall in mid- to late-March and throughout April. The good thing was the snow could never stick to pavement during those months, so it didn’t pose any inconvenience aside from being cold on those days.
There have been some consistency during all the winters, such as (1) it simply does not rain from mid-October through March out here, and (2) I never have to do any yard work (e.g., lawn mowing) during those six or seven months since nothing grows.
Anyhow—at last—it seems like spring has arrived, with the trees blossoming nicely, if a couple weeks later than usual. The downside to all this is it is also weed-pulling and lawn-mowing season! I just mowed the lawn and fired up the sprinklers for the first time on May 3.
But with the grasses greening, flowers blooming, and trees leavening, it is a very pretty time of year. Here is one more pic from my neighborhood where you can see Richards Lake and Horsetooth Rock, although barely because my photographic skills (and camera) are pretty bad.