D.C. area forecast: Winterlike temperatures return; midweek storm?

EXPRESS FORECAST

Today: Partly cloudy, windy. Low-to-mid 40s. | Tonight: Mostly clear, winds waning. Low 20s to near 30. | Tomorrow: Party to mostly sunny. Mid-40s. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail


A daily assessment of the potential for *accumulating* snow for the next week on a 0-10 scale. More info


FORECAST IN DETAIL


Today (Saturday): Plan on periods of sun and clouds, thanks in part to cold air aloft, though the cloudiest time of the day is likely midday into the afternoon given some surface heating. I can’t totally rule out a passing sprinkle or snowflake either, but it won’t amount to anything and won’t last long in any location. Highs should go down in the book near midnight many spots, with daytime temperatures having trouble rising past the low-and-mid 40s. Winds between 15-25 mph, along with gusts near and past 30 mph, will keep things feeling even colder. Be wary of a fire threat as well, thanks to dry air, dry conditions, and winds. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Winds die off to breezes during the evening, and continue to wane further into the overnight, though they likely stay up around 5-10 mph even in the calmer periods. Besides that, we trend mostly clear and that helps lows dip well into the 20s most spots. A range of about 23-30ish seems likely. I’m not confident National will make the 20s with winds keeping us a little mixed, but we should tally our first freeze of the season there regardless. Confidence: Medium-High

For related traffic news, check out Dr. Gridlock. Keep reading for the forecast into next week...

Tomorrow (Sunday): If Saturday’s chilled conditions keep you indoors, you might have a slightly better luck on Sunday. As an upper-level low moves away, we should see more in the way of sunshine -- probably partly to mostly sunny. Winds also slacken compared to Saturday, sustained around 10 mph at peak, with gusts to about 20-25 mph or so. Highs should head toward the mid-40s most spots, with wind chills a bit lower. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow night: Mostly clear is the story. Perhaps do a little star gazing? Thanks to a warmer wind direction, from the southwest, temperatures should be up a smidge compared to tonight, with lows ranging from the mid-20s to low 30s. Those winds are pretty light throughout. Confidence: Medium-High

A LOOK AHEAD

More seasonal conditions return on Monday along with mostly sunny skies. Winds should be light as highs reach near 50 to the lower 50s. Not too much to worry about, other than returning to work! We may see some increase in clouds prior to sunset as a disturbance to our west tries to throw a few our way. And partly cloudy conditions should rule the overnight, with lows ranging from near freezing to near 40 across the area. Confidence: Medium

The outlook for Tuesday remains tricky. It does appear increasingly likely that colder air will be arriving in time to keep any system from riding to our north. It seems wise to at least keep a 30%-40% chance of showers, possibly even snow showers, during the day and into the night. Some recent modeling shows us getting little to no precipitation, and temperatures may be marginal for snow either way. In other words, it has a way to go to be an event of note. Given the changes in timing of cooler air compared to earlier forecasts, daytime temperatures should rise no higher than the 40s most spots. Confidence: Low-Medium

Ian Livingston is a forecaster/photographer and information lead for the Capital Weather Gang. By day, Ian is a defense and national security researcher at a D.C. think tank.

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