A storm transposition approach is investigated as a possible tool of assessing the frequency of extreme precipitation depths, that is, depths of return period much greater than 100 years. This paper focuses on estimation of the annual exceedance probability of extreme average precipitation depths over a catchment. The probabilistic storm transposition methodology is presented, and the several conceptual and methodological difficulties arising in this approach are identified. The method is implemented and is partially evaluated by means of a semihypothetical example involving extreme midwestern storms and two hypothetical catchments (of 100 and 1000 mi2 (˜260 and 2600 km2)) located in central Iowa. The results point out the need for further research to fully explore the potential of this approach as a tool for assessing the probabilities of rare storms, and eventually floods, a necessary element of risk‐based analysis and design of large hydraulic structures.