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Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 03/25/2011

Forecast: Chill continues ahead of snow risk

11 a.m. update: Don’t be surprised to see some rain and snow showers this evening after around 7 p.m. Rain showers are mostly likely at the onset, but they may mix with or change to snow showers with a higher percentage of the precipitation in the form of snow as you head west and up in elevation. Precipitation is likely to cutoff between midnight and pre-dawn . No accumulation is expected except well to the southwest and in the mountains where a dusting to an inch could fall.

Today's Daily Digit
 
A somewhat subjective rating of the
day's weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.

 
Don't really want chilly 40s, somewhat cloudy skies, and a wind chill for the first Friday of spring. Do you?
 
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EXPRESS FORECAST

Today: Clouds mix with sun. Mid-40s to 50. | Tonight: Becoming cloudy. Chance of rain and/or snow showers. Upper 20s to low 30s. | Tomorrow: Sun again shrouded. Mid-to-upper 40s. | Sunday: Morning snow? Mostly cloudy. Mid-30s to near 40. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail

FORECAST IN DETAIL

Feel stuck in a murky, cool region? That’s because the jet stream is stuck too. It’s dipping through the region, opening the door for cooler air and storminess. And we won’t get out of this phase until next week sometime. Today and Saturday are salvageable, if somewhat cloudy. Saturday night (pre dawn) and Sunday morning is probably what everyone is interested in. Well, we’re still looking at a real snow risk! After that, we stay cool but a slow temperature climb appears likely. Allergy sufferers should enjoy any relief though. Chilly, sun-starved trees won’t be pumping out as much pollen!

Snow Potential Index: 5 (↑) - Perhaps some accumulation, particularly grassy surfaces early Sunday. March sun angle may prove difficult for any daytime snowfall.
 
The SPI is a daily assessment of the potential for accumulating snow for the next week on a 0-10 scale. Get the 'SPI' on Twitter
 

Temperatures: Latest D.C. area temperature map powered by iMapWeather (base map by Google). Click and hold on map to pan. Double-click to zoom. Refresh page to update. See larger map on our Weather Wall.

Today (Friday): Clouds appear to be battling the sun today, yet I think by a slim majority, the sun may actually win the war. We have somewhat unstable conditions aloft that produce the clouds, as sun-warmed morning air percolates upward into the atmosphere and encounters colder air further overhead. Highs should head for the upper 40s mainly, but the lack of sunshine at times will facilitate a chilly feeling. Mid-40s in Frederick might be the maximum, while 50 degrees is possible in and south of town. You might not like a slightly cool 5-10 mph breeze out of the northwest. Brrrr. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Watch out, temperatures are chilly early and head downward toward the upper 20s (suburbs) to lower 30s (downtown). The slightest breeze is possible out of the north, but mostly calm (thank goodness, we don’t want a wind chill). A few clouds enter into the region late in the evening -- perhaps even a passing shower or snowshower -- helping keep our temperatures from dropping even lower. Phew! Confidence: Medium-High

Is the snow a real threat for Sunday? Keep on reading...

Tomorrow (Saturday): Should be reminiscent of today. Runners in the National Marathon may want to bundle up a bit as temperatures are bound to be chilly, in the 30s. I can’t completely rule out the chance during the first hour of a light flurry, either. High temperatures again may only make it into the mid-to-upper 40s as clouds attempt ample shrouding of the sun for parts of the day. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow night: Clouds may dominate by dinner time as temperatures dip -- back into the 30s, through late evening. Precipitations chances increase (60-70%) after midnight, when sprinkles probably change to snow as the intensity picks up before dawn. At this time it appears precipitation should be mostly light, but some moderate activity is also possible. By dawn, low temperatures bottom out in the mid-20s to near 30. Winter again? Confidence: Low-Medium

Sunday: Morning could be tricky in spots, but late-March sun goes to work on roadways (even through the clouds) as it rises. Light snow or potentially a rain/snow mix currently appears likely (60% chance) into the morning or midday. The track is still sort of up in the air, and a drift south or north could have consequences. When considering what, if any, accumulation may occur -- the answer is: not a lot, but maybe more than very little. Getting some accumulation (coating to 1”+) is more likely than it was yesterday. By afternoon, we stick with a mostly overcast sky, unfortunately. Temperatures don’t move up too far, probably mid-30s to near 40. Brr! Confidence: Low

A LOOK AHEAD

Sunday night we slowly clear out with, overall, an uneventful evening. Temperatures still get darn chilly in the mid-20s in the coldest spots to around the freezing mark downtown. We may have to revise the temperatures downward even a bit more, if the trend continues.... Confidence: Low-Medium

On Monday, we again stick to our temperature range of late, in the mid-to-upper 40s. Clouds in the afternoon could hinder hitting the 50 degree mark. Can you believe our average is 60 degrees at this point in March? We are chilly indeed! Then, Tuesday, finally may see us break above the 50 degree mark. This assumes overnight clouds clear out for the most part, and sunny skies get us perhaps as high as mid-50s. But I could be overly optimistic! Confidence: Low-Medium

By Camden Walker  |  05:00 AM ET, 03/25/2011

Categories:  Forecasts

 
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