D.C. area forecast: Warmer today before storm system approaches Sunday

Today’s Daily Digit

A somewhat subjective rating of the days weather, on a scale of 1 to 10.

7
If it was early March, I might rank it higher. Wishing for more warmth at this point.

Express Forecast

Today: Mostly to partly sunny, breezy. Near 50 to mid-50s.

Tonight: Partly cloudy. 27-35.

Tomorrow: Some morning sun, then increasing clouds. Showers/mix possible late. Mid-40s to near 50.

FORECAST IN DETAIL

Temperature Map

Temperatures:Latest D.C. area temperature map. See interactive map on our Weather Wall.

D.C. and the local metro area is now less than a week from average highs of 60 or higher, but still no stretch like that is in the forecast. Instead, we’re more likely to keep our string of below normal days going for a while, and we’ve already seen 11 of those so far this month through yesterday. Perhaps it is no surprise that after just a hint today that real spring might be in our future, we’re looking at another nuisance-type winter storm threat approaching tomorrow.

Today (Saturday): Pretty decent, especially compared to some of those cold and raw days during the work week. Skies may feature clouds from time to time, with mostly sunny to partly cloudy conditions on average. Winds should be weaker compared to recent days, so highs ranging from near 50 to the mid-50s won’t feel too bad, particularly if you hang out in the sun. Those breezes are about 5-10 mph, with some higher gusts, from the northwest. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Stars may mix with periods of clouds, but tranquil times continue. The chilly air mass is increasingly less “fresh,” so lows should be a few degrees milder than last night most spots. The upper 20s to mid-30s should do it in a lot of places. Confidence: Medium-High

For related traffic news, check out Dr. Gridlock. Keep reading for the forecast through the weekend…

Tomorrow (Sunday): We start the day with at least some sunshine, and perhaps even mostly clear skies early. Clouds increase, lower, and thicken as the day wears on. It’s still hard to pinpoint the exact onset of showers, so the late afternoon through post-sunset period is still favored. These showers may mix with or change to wet snow, particularly in higher elevations to the west and southwest. Highs reach the mid-40s to near 50, possibly depending on onset of thicker clouds and any precipitation. Confidence: Medium

Snow Potential Index

A daily assessment of the potential for *accumulating* snow for the next week on a 1-10 scale. More info

3 () Minimal risk of notable accumulation Sun nigh/Mon, but we’re closing in and a coating or so certainly possible.
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Tomorrow night: Periods of precipitation, either rain, rain and snow mixed, or snow, are possible throughout the night. Most the the activity should be pretty light, though periods of moderate precipitation may occur in short bouts after midnight. Locations, particularly north and west of I-95 and with elevation, may see some light slushy accumulation mainly on grass. A coating or so could even make it into the city or just southeast. Lows range from near freezing to the mid-30s.Confidence: Medium

A LOOK AHEAD

On Monday, the system continues its transition to a coastal storm, and it eventually should strengthen a good deal. This helps keep the risk of precipitation across the area at least through the first half of the day, and maybe much of the day. However, with sunrise, the risk for any light accumulation should quickly wane unless precipitation is very heavy. Right now, that does not seem to be the case. A transition back toward more rain across the whole area should also occur during the day, though a snow mix might continue in spots. Highs range from about 36 to 42. Precipitation tapers by Monday evening if not prior, with lows making the low-to-mid 30s. Confidence: Low-Medium

By Tuesday, the storm system is mainly a memory as we start off with partly cloudy skies and some remnant breezes. Cold air aloft should respond to any surface heating to promote more cloudiness as we work through the day. This kind of situation limits highs to the upper 40s or near 50. There could be a few showers around as well, but probably nothing too widespread or intense. Confidence: 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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Jason Samenow · March 22, 2013