D.C. area forecast: A last gasp of cool weather early this week, then summer is on

Today’s Daily Digit

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

6
Might seem chilly at times but, come July, some would kill for a day like this.

Express Forecast

Today: Partly sunny. Highs: 59-64.

Tonight: Mostly clear and very cold. Lows: 32-40.

Tomorrow: Sunny. Highs: 62-67.

FORECAST IN DETAIL

Temperature Map

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

A switch is about to go off, and our weather regime will shift from one that is unseasonably cool, and even frosty, to summerlike. Highs are stuck in the 60s the next two days, with lows in the 30s for many areas tonight.  But by Wednesday, we make a run well into the 70s and there may be no turning back.  From Thursday through the weekend, and perhaps beyond, highs reach the 80s.  Say goodbye to heating and hello air-conditioning.

Today (Monday): Grab the fleeces and warm-up jackets this morning, with most of us waking up to temperatures around 40.  The morning May sunshine gives temperatures a lift, but increasing afternoon clouds apply the brakes, with high temperatures leveling off in the upper 50s to low 60s.  (These are 10-15 degrees below normal.)  Winds are from the northwest at 10-15 mph. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Evening clouds clear and winds diminish.  With cold, high air pressure overhead, these are nearly ideal conditions for the daytime heating to vent back into space and for temperatures to take a tumble.  Lows range from within a degree or so of freezing in our coldest suburbs west and northwest of the city to around 40 downtown and near the Bay.  Patchy frost is possible outside the beltway, with a number of spots into the mid-30s. Confidence: Medium-High

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

Tomorrow (Tuesday): It’s an unseasonably cold start to the day with temperatures as many as 15-20 degrees below normal.  But we make a nice recovery with beautifully clear, sunny skies, and highs mostly in the mid-60s.  Winds are light. Confidence: High

Tomorrow night: A warm front brings increasing clouds, a slight (20 percent) chance of late night showers, and winds from the south.  As such, temperatures are not nearly as cold as the previous two nights, with lows 45-50 (suburbs-city). Confidence: Medium-High

A LOOK AHEAD

Wednesday marks the stunning transition from our cool pattern to basically summer.  The morning hours may be a bit gray with a shower or two (30 percent chance), but then we should break out a bit in the afternoon, with highs climbing into the mid-to-upper 70s (with some 80+ readings not far to the south).  Mild Wednesday night with lows in the mid-50s in the cooler suburbs to low 60s downtown.  Confidence: Medium

The weather pattern hits a summery stride Thursday through Sunday.  High pressure offshore pumps in warm breezes (from the south and southwest) while some occasional weak disturbances in the flow set off isolated to scattered afternoon or evening thundershowers.  Saturday probably offers the best chance of late day storminess (30-40 percent) with odds the other days 20 percent or less. Bottom line is that it’s dry more often than not in this stretch with highs mostly 80-85 and lows 54-62 (suburbs-city). Confidence: Medium

Jason is currently the Washington Post’s weather editor. A native Washingtonian, Jason has been a weather enthusiast since age 10.
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