The outdoor season is picking up into full swing, and that no doubt increases the importance and impact of the weekend forecast. We’ll use this space as a regular (most weeks) chance to review our forecasts leading up to and through the prior weekend, and see how the forecasts compared with reality. It’s also your chance to grade us and comment about how our forecasts might have helped or failed you. And, hopefully, this exercise will be a learning experience for us at CWG, helping to improve our forecasts in the long run.
So, let’s review our forecasts leading up to and through this past weekend...
On Monday we wrote:
Weekend weather should be mild, but given the continued proximity of a stalled out front, we may have to contend with a few periodic (not all-day) rain showers. We should remain on the warm side of the front, resulting in forecast highs near 70 or even into the 70s. ... Confidence: Low-Medium
Keep reading for a full review of our forecast for this past weekend, and your chance to grade us...
On Tuesday we wrote:
The weekend can’t seem to shake the stalled warm front at the start with more scattered showers (40% chance), cloud cover, winds from the east, and temperatures in the 60s on Saturday. ... Sunday is our best hope to save the weekend as we could finally break free into the “warm sector” to favor highs in the low 70s and partly sunny skies. ... Confidence: Low
On Wednesday we wrote:
Friday through Saturday night are likely mostly cloudy and could be occasionally showery (thunder?) depending on the position of the front. A cool, moist flow from the east probably limits Friday and Saturday highs to the 50s or 60s (wide forecast temperature range due to uncertain location of front) .... Confidence: Low
Sunday we should begin to break out of our flow-from-the-east funk. That probably means decreasing rain chances, though we might still see an isolated shower or t’storm, and warmer temperatures as winds come more from the southeast or south ... Skies should be at least partly sunny with highs at least to near 70. Near 80 isn’t out of the question if winds from the south can pick up their pace early enough in the day. Confidence: Medium
On Thursday we wrote:
Saturday starts out clammy with plenty of clouds and a few sprinkles possible. However, winds are going to be shifting slowly to come from the south .... With a little luck the breezes get an assist from breaks in the clouds later in the day and we make a push for a high in the lower 60s. ... Confidence: Medium
Sunday sees spring come back in full force with strengthening winds from the south and gradually clearing skies. The trick is just how fast those skies clear. If the clouds hold tough mid-to-upper 60s are it for highs. However, if clearing comes early it could end up a full 10 degrees warmer. Being the optimist, I am going for the mid-to-upper 70s! ... Confidence: Medium
On Friday we wrote:
Tomorrow (Saturday): The day starts out fairly dank and bone-chilling with essentially overcast skies. A shower or two can’t be ruled out either. High temperatures are in question .... If we see warmth transported on ... southerly winds sooner in the afternoon than it currently appears, we could hit the lower 60s without trouble! But clouds may hang tight along with that easterly breeze through a good portion of the day -- and that would keep temperatures ... in the upper 50s. Confidence: Low-Medium
Sunday: It should be pretty spectacular .... Assuming that the clouds are thin and we’re mainly clear by midday, temperatures should head toward the mid-to-upper 70s. However, should we not see as many breaks in the clouds as currently expected -- look for readings near 70 or a bit above.... Confidence: Low-Medium
On Friday afternoon we wrote:
Tomorrow (Saturday): The day begins with pockets of fog and drizzle. By afternoon, it probably remain cloudy, but the sky may brighten some. Overall, conditions improve relative to today, with highs 55-60.
On Saturday we wrote:
Today (Saturday): There could be drizzle or patchy fog early, but breezes should keep it from being widespread. Otherwise, it’s mostly cloudy as winds with an easterly component continue .... There could be an isolated shower around during the day, but more places stay dry than may briefly get wet. Highs reach the mid-50s to near 60. Confidence: Medium-High
1:00 p.m. update: Clouds have been pretty thick so far, with a few breaks now trying to make inroads from the east. Highs seem more likely to end up closer to the lower end of the range previously anticipated, and perhaps a bit lower in spots.
Tomorrow (Sunday) Clouds may initially be stubborn to depart, but an increasing south and southwest wind should scour them out enough for partly sunny skies by the afternoon. Highs should rise toward the mid-70s, though places north and northeast of D.C. could be cooler while places south and west near or top 80. There may be a late-day shower .... Confidence: Medium-High
On Sunday we wrote:
Today (Sunday): As a warm front lifts north, partly sunny skies and winds from the south at 5-15 mph bring welcome warmth after our cool and damp start to the weekend. Afternoon highs should climb at least to the upper 60s, and with enough sun
mid-70s low 70s are possible. Confidence: Medium-High (strikethrough edit made during 9:45 a.m. forecast update)
12:45 p.m. update: Still waiting for some sun. If it doesn’t make much of an appearance, then mid-60s may be about the best we can do for highs.
What really happened? Saturday was overcast with early-morning fog/mist and highs near 50 (51 @ DCA, 50 @ IAD, 52 @ BWI). Sunday was overcast through morning with early-to-mid morning fog/mist, and turned partly sunny in the afternoon with highs in mid-60s (63 @ DCA, 66 @ IAD, 63 @ BWI).