D.C. area forecast: Nicely sunny, milder today; but real warmth waits for weekend

December 19, 2013

Today’s Daily Digit

A somewhat subjective rating of the day’s weather, on a scale of 1 to 10.

7
Temperatures take a nice jump up today under a bright sun but still a far cry from the warmth awaiting us this weekend.

Express Forecast

Today: Mostly sunny, noticeably warmer. Highs: 49-53.

Tonight: Mainly starry. Lows 30-37.

Tomorrow: Partly sunny, breezy. Highs: 54-59.

FORECAST IN DETAIL

Temperature Map

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

Brace yourself as we get set for a wild ride, something akin to a roller coaster over the next week. The climb is steep with highs jumping 5-10 degrees each day, culminating in a potentially record-breaking Sunday, when many areas could crack the 70 degree mark! Not bad for the first full day of winter, at least astronomically speaking. You know what happens on the roller coaster after reaching the peak, but that is next week. So let’s just live it up for now and suffer later.

Today (Thursday): The sun’s time is short-lived right now but it makes the most of it. Highs climb to the upper 40s to lower 50s. Breezes from the southwest are on the light side but signal the influx of warmer air that builds over the next few days. Confidence: High

Tonight: The stars shine bright through the night. A light southwest wind stays up, but lows still fall to the low-to-mid 30s burbs and upper 30s downtown. Confidence: High

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

Tomorrow (Friday): The southwest winds build and moister air begins to feed into the area as well. Highs easily reach the mid-to-upper 50s despite more in the way of pop up clouds in the afternoon. Confidence: High

Tomorrow night: The steady southwest wind flow and higher humidity finally make some headway in the overnight hours holding lows in the low-to-mid 40s. There is only a very slight (20%) chance of a light shower. Confidence: Medium-High

A LOOK AHEAD

Saturday (Winter Solstice) sees more mid- and high level clouds start feeding into the area. But who can complain with highs likely to be in the low-to-mid 60s? The clouds are courtesy of a strong storm forming out in the Midwest. Hopefully, they diminish enough in the evening to allow a view of the conjunction of the rising moon and the bright blue star Regulus in the eastern sky. The overnight lows exceed our normal highs, with most areas staying in the 50s! For some areas, the result will likely be record high lows.  Confidence: Medium-High

Sunday is just about as good as it can get for temperatures, as many areas take a whack at a record high for the date. Highs should reach upper 60s to lower 70s!  And all this under mostly cloudy skies. The real threat to records comes as moisture continues to stream into the area from the Midwest storm. There is a 40% chance for a few showers to develop in the afternoon that could prematurely cut-off the rise in temperatures. The main showers (and even a rumble?) are not likely to arrive until overnight with a 90% chance of light rain (mainly less than a half inch). Lows hold in the low-to-mid 50s. Confidence: Medium

The shift to strong northwest winds is the first signal that Monday is the downhill plunge. Given the mild start, even if we just hold in the low-to-mid 50s it will still be a victory in my book. Skies should clear quickly during the day but there is still a 30% chance of an early morning shower. Confidence: Medium

David Streit grew up on a farm/ranch in Nebraska. Witness to severe weather of all varieties focused his career path. Degrees from the universities of Nebraska and Wisconsin prepared him to be a forecaster for Capital Weather Gang as well as his day job as COO of Commodity Weather Group.
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Thu.

partlycloudyday
63° /82°

Fri.

partlycloudyday
64° /82°

Sat.

thunderstorms
65° /82°
Drop 20%

Sun.

rain
69° /83°
Drop 30%

Mon.

rain
69° /86°
Drop 30%

Tue.

thunderstorms
70° /85°
Drop 20%

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