Hail Storms, Tornadoes and Bad Weather Plays Havoc With Teller County and Pikes Peak Region

Rick Langenberg


The last week was reported as the warmest recorded temperature for the world in the last 1,000 years, according to national news accounts.


Apparently, the communities of Cripple Creek, Green Mountain Falls and much of the Teller County/Pikes Peak region, didn’t get the message, along with much of southern Colorado, where tornadoes became a daily occurrence.


The July 4th holiday and follow-up days provided a massive attack by severe weather events, causing washed-out roads, floods, extreme hail damage, and scary fog conditions.


The peak of this assault occurred in Cripple Creek Friday night, with reports of huge damages due to quarter-sized hail pelts that hit the area with little mercy. Reports abounded of broken windows and downed phone lines, following a surprise storm that struck the region. Law enforcement officials also observed a slew of broken phone and cable lines.


Many windshields on vehicles were destroyed and windows on homes were ravaged, as hail pounded the area. Damage assessments are now being conducted.


The hail hit other parts of Teller, but not to the extreme as what occurred in Cripple Creek.


Officers have observed broken phone and cable lines, including some over cars. Three inches of hail accumulated in the downtown section of Cripple Creek, as one local news station touted the headline message:“Cripple Creek hits the storm jackpot.”

Police Chief Bud Bright expressed much concern over the situation in interviews with several news stations. “It makes me sick to my stomach, because I live here and I’ve got personal vehicles and personal property here that’s at risk,” Bright said, in an interview with KKTV. “The city’s got a lot of property and these vehicles sitting out here that sustained quite a bit of damage, so yeah, it hurts.”

Bright admits that hail storms are not unique to the Cripple Creek/Victor area, but storms of this magnitude are unusual.


Besides the hail invasion, a tornado warning was issued Friday in the Victor and Goldfield area. Lamar, Colorado was riddled by frequent storms and tornado threats for several days.


The hail hit other parts of Teller, but not to the extreme as what occurred in Cripple Creek.

Television news reports throughout the week almost spent their entire 30-minute segments talking about the weather.


On July 4 and July 5, Green Mountain Falls and the lower Ute Pass was bombarded by huge rain storms that provided another bad day for their deteriorating roads. Ironically, these bombardments occurred shortly after a mayoral forum, which touched on the dire conditions of local roads. A bizarre fog also encompassed the region on Wednesday, making travel between Woodland Park and Cripple Creek an alright scary experience.


The bad weather attack followed an amazing series of stellar days, featuring ideal summer weather, featuring bonus days for hikers, campers and golfers. The Shining Mountain Golf Course reported a huge spike in play, with the arrival of a dry spell.


Unfortunately, this spell didn’t last with the arrival of July 4th, which kicked off a series of ugly weather days.

The bad weather days are attributed to a persistent weather trough, an extended low atmospheric pressure system known for producing cold, stormy weather. It hovered over Canada for an extended period, and officials say it is responsible for creating waves of high-impact storms hitting the Pikes Peak region over the past weeks, according to a report in The (Colorado Springs) Gazette.