D.C. area forecast: A Saturday to savor ahead of Sunday’s soaking

Today’s Daily Digit

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

8
A few clouds may be around at times, but highs in the 50s with fairly light winds sounds like a winner.

Express Forecast

Today: Mostly to partly sunny. Highs: 51-58

Tonight: Increasing clouds. Rain becoming likely around sunrise. Lows: 30s.

Tomorrow: Rain likely, ending late. Highs: Near 40 to mid-40s.

FORECAST IN DETAIL

Temperature Map

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

Today is shaping up to be a great day to get outdoors and take in some sunshine along with mild temperatures. Clouds may filter the sun here and there before it sets, and they’ll certainly increase and lower overnight. Rain is likely for a good chunk of the day on Sunday as a storm system tracks up the East Coast. It’s a quick hitter though, with colder and drier air on its heels.

Today (Saturday): This is quite a nice late December day as long as you don’t mind above normal temperatures. Skies should be mostly to partly sunny, perhaps with the most concentrated sun during the first half of the day. Any clouds around should largely be of the high level variety. Highs range from about 51-58 most spots. Winds are from the south to southwest around 5-10 mph, with higher gusts. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Clouds begin to thicken as a storm gathers off to the southwest. Around midnight we should be fully cloudy, and showers or a general rain begins to move in during the pre-dawn hours, especially to the south and west. Slight chance a pocket or two of freezing rain develops well north and west, but it should be brief and no real problem. Lows dip to the lower 30s in the coldest spots to the upper 30s downtown. Confidence: Medium-High

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

Tomorrow (Sunday): Widespread showers or a general rain are likely (70% chance) by the time the sun rises, perhaps still moving in well north and east. The heaviest is probably centered on the morning into midday, but may not taper until afternoon or even close to sunset. With enough rain around, we should mainly see highs in the near 40 to mid-40s range, but they could be a touch higher with less precip in the area. Totals in the 0.6-1.2″ range seem about the most likely scenario across the area. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow night: A few showers may still be around early, but if so, they’re gone pretty quick. Skies trend partly to mostly clear with some gusts from the northwest. As skies trend clearer, but winds stay up, we should see most temperatures reaching the low-to-mid 30s. Confidence: Medium

A LOOK AHEAD

On Monday we start off with a good deal of sun, but there may be some midday cloudiness as a reinforcing shot of cooler air pushes through. With that colder air filtering in, we should see highs mainly in the low-to-mid 40s or so. Perhaps dropping on northwest wind by mid-afternoon. Confidence: Medium

New Year’s Eve should be partly to mostly sunny and chilly. Winds relax compared to days prior, so it shouldn’t feel too bad out there. That cold air is more strongly in control, meaning highs are mostly in the mid-to-upper 30s. An early look at ball drop weather: Mid-20s in the coldest suburbs to near 30 downtown. Confidence: Medium

Also on Capital Weather Gang

PM Update: Sunny, mild Saturday, rainy Sunday; ISS flyby this evening