PM Update: Cold blast, possible snowflakes closing in on D.C.

November 11, 2013

Temperature Map

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

A wall of clouds descended on the D.C. region this afternoon, presaging the Arctic cold front poised to blow through the region towards Tuesday morning. Temperatures Tuesday will be close to 20 degrees below normal and, yes, we may see some snowflakes flying through the skies. But they won’t lay and stay on the ground.

Through Tonight: Cloudy and dry until just before dawn. Scattered bands of precipitation move into the region between 4 and 7 a.m. Precipitation may begin as rain showers, but probably changes over to mostly snow showers and flurries. Chance of precipitation varies from about 20-50 percent – with highest percentages well west of the District prior to dawn (Loudoun and Frederick counties), with areas in town and to the east probably staying dry. Low temperatures range from the mid to upper 30s (suburbs to city). Winds shift from out of the southwest to out of the northwest late at night, at around 5-10 mph.

Tomorrow (Tuesday): Scattered snow showers and flurries are possible in the morning (40 percent chance area-wide) – which may initially mix with rain along and east of I-95. This snow may very briefly reduce visibilities and even the coat the grass in colder areas (upper Montgomery, Loudoun and Frederick counties) before melting. During the afternoon it becomes partly sunny and blustery – with maybe a flurry or two (20 percent chance), with temperatures making little headway – perhaps reaching the low 40s, with upper 30s in the colder suburbs. Winds are from the north at 10-20 mph.

See my forecast through the weekend. And if you haven’t already, join us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter . For related traffic news, check out Dr. Gridlock.


Leading edge of cloud bank moving into metro region this afternoon (Becky Howarth via Facebook)

November snows: The last time we had at least a trace of snow in November was not that long ago: 2012. All three airports received a trace of snow on November 7 last year! But it’s been much longer since we’ve observed measurable November snow: not since 1996 when Reagan National picked up 0.2″ and Dulles 0.7″.

Snow graphics:

The National Weather Service’s take on our chance of getting at least a trace of snow


The percent chance of at least a trace of snow Tuesday in the region (National Weather Service)

The GFS model simulates parts of an inch of snow accumulation in the region – but any snow that falls will not stick.  Accumulating snow, however, is possible in the mountains of West Virginia and western Maryland.


GFS Model snow simulation showing “accumulation” through 7 p.m. Tuesday night (WeatherBell.com)
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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Jason Samenow · November 11, 2013