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Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 03/31/2011

Forecast: Chill fest continues with late day rain

NatCast: Chillly and damp

Weekend gradually dries but weak warm-up

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

 
Two points because it isn't blowing or snowing, otherwise zip for this day
 
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EXPRESS FORECAST

Today: Cloudy, showers late. 45-49. | Tonight: Occasional rain, possibly mixing/changing to snow. 34-39. | Tomorrow: Rain/snow showers end early, windy. 47-51.| A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail

FORECAST IN DETAIL

March is supposed to go out like a lamb...right? Hope his wool doesn’t shrink in this damp weather! April could be confused with March as it comes in like a lion too with the raw temperatures reinforced by strong winds and dare I mention it, even some wet snow flakes in the early morning. Drying and clearing this weekend actually allow temperatures to struggle closer to normals (62/42 National) but not quite.

Snow Potential Index: 2 (→) - A coastal low passes by just as the colder air comes in. It will quickly draw moisture out of the area as it pulls north. If the low is ever so slightly slower and the cold air ever so slightly faster coming in, grassy surfaces could get a coating before sunrise with the best chances north and northwest of the city.
 
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
 


Radar & lightning: Latest D.C. area radar shows movement of precipitation and lightning strikes over past two hours. Refresh page to update. Click here or on image to enlarge. Or see radar bigger on our Weather Wall.

Today (Thursday): Roads could be dampened by a drizzle and with pockets of fog this morning, drive carefully. Spotty showers and drizzle probably continue into the afternoon (70% chance). This is not the way I pictured opening day for the Nats! With a little luck, though, the soaking rain arrives just after Atlanta’s final out. Amounts should remain light but are likely to slow the evening commute. Clouds will dominate with a breeze from the northeast at 5-10 mph. Highs only manage to reach the mid-to-upper 40s. Confidence: Medium

Tonight: Rain showers continue through the evening (90% chance) and could be moderate for a time. Rainfall potential is up to around 0.5” with more to the east and northeast. Winds pick up from the north at 5 to 15 mph. The incoming colder air aloft is marginally strong enough in the models to perhaps allow a partial or full changeover to snow in the predawn hours primarily in the colder north and west suburbs. Drier air comes rushing in by daybreak and ends the threat of any serious snow. Lows should fall no further than mid-to-upper 30s. Confidence: Medium

Keep reading for the forecast through early next week...

Tomorrow (Friday): Today is a bad April Fool’s joke. A few breaks are possible in the morning clouds but they quickly fill back in and the day is another gray one. Winds behind the coastal storm chill the bone, coming from the west at 10-20 mph, gusting to 30. Temperatures don’t stand a chance of reaching average levels only crawling to the upper 40s to lower 50s. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow night: Just bundle up and keep telling yourself this has to end soon...right? The chill comes from both the temperatures and the slow-to-die-down winds. Skies remaini cloudy. At least lows should stay above freezing with mid-to-upper 30s expected. Confidence: Medium-High

A LOOK AHEAD

Saturda yshould actually start out with a fair amount of sun but just as soon as the temperatures start to rise so do the clouds and a stray shower or two cannot be ruled out in the afternoon (20% chance). Breezes are still fairly brisk from the west much of the day. Highs do a little better despite the challenge and peak in the low-to-mid 50s. The evening calms down and skies clear out for a change. Lows should bottom in the mid-to-upper 30s most spots, keeping pockets of frost isolated to the colder suburbs where lows dip to the low 30s. Confidence: Medium

Sunday is true to its name with non-stop sun and only light winds. This is as good as it has been for nearly a week and a half. Temperatures climb steadily and peak in the mid-to-upper 50s. Clouds increase quickly in the evening but showers are not likely until after midnight (50% chance). Lows hold in the upper 30s to lower 40s Confidence: Medium

Monday features another damp commute, oh joy. The showers (60% chance) should let up later in the day and despite all the clouds this is a warm front and temperatures rise reasonably. Highs are expected to still reach the mid-to-upper 50s. Confidence: Low-Medium

By  |  05:00 AM ET, 03/31/2011

Categories:  Forecasts

 
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