D.C. area forecast: A mild start to February ahead of Monday’s winter storm threat

Today’s Daily Digit

A somewhat subjective rating of the day’s weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.

8
Another day with temps at comfortable levels along with plentiful sun. I’ll take it!

Express Forecast

Today: Partly cloudy. Highs: Upper 40s to mid-50s.

Tonight: Partly to mostly cloudy. Lows: 31-38.

Tomorrow: Partly sunny, increasing p.m. clouds. Highs: Mid-to-upper 50s.

FORECAST IN DETAIL

Temperature Map

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

If you’ve been wanting to spend more time outdoors but haven’t been a fan of the cold, this weekend is for you! Our winter break doesn’t last too long — we’re already closing in on our next forecast adventure. A quick-moving yet potentially moisture-laden storm system should be aiming at us by late tomorrow, ready to run into the area as we head back to work on Monday.

Today (Saturday): We could see more in the way of cloudiness than yesterday, but also plenty of sunshine. Highs rising near and above 50 seem a good bet, with a range from upper 40s to mid-50s most spots. If you’re right near the very cold and frozen waterways with a wind off them, temperatures may be on the low end or potentially lower than the rest of the area. Winds are from the south around 5-10 mph. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Skies range from partly to mostly cloudy, with lows staying above freezing in a lot of the area. For a range, 31-38 should cover most spots. A south wind slowly shifts southwest, still pumping milder air in. There could be a brief shower or two near dawn, as well as some patchy fog. Confidence: Medium-High

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

Tomorrow (Sunday): Highs rise to at least the mid-50s, and given our typical over-performance on days like this, near 60 might not be out of reach in D.C. and surrounds especially south and southwest. Skies do trend cloudier though, and that’s a harbinger of things to come. Winds around 10 mph turn from southwest to northwest by late day. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow night: Skies are mostly to fully cloudy, with a few showers possible early. As we get past midnight, precipitation odds increase to likely (60% chance) in the pre-dawn hours. This may start rain, or rain and snow mixed, but wanting to transition to wet snow — especially in the suburbs west and northwest of the city. Lows range from near 30 to the mid-30s. Confidence: Medium

A LOOK AHEAD

Snow Potential Index

A daily assessment of the potential for at least ~1″ of snow in the next week, on a 0-10 scale.

4 (↑): Monday snow risk still quite uncertain, but can’t ignore potential. An active week ahead beyond that as well.

Snow and rain changing to snow remains likely (70% chance) Monday morning across the area. The best odds for some snow accumulation should focus north and west. However, the whole area could face the risk, it’s just a little hard to say how cold it will be at the surface at this point. Temps are marginal (perhaps hovering near lows during precip) to get super excited about accumulation anywhere really, but there’s potential for heavy bands which can overcome that. Whatever is falling ends around midday or early afternoon, with highs perhaps rising to around 40 should it depart by that time frame. Confidence: Low-Medium

Coming off lows mostly in the 20s, skies generally remain cloudy on Tuesday, but perhaps we’ll get some clearer periods early in the day before the next storm moves in. We should stay dry, with highs rising to the low-and-mid 40s.  Moving into and through the evening, rain and freezing rain (probably limited in scope and impact on the latter) odds are up. That should all transition to plain rain showers everywhere as time goes, thanks to an unfavorable storm track for cold air hanging on. 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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