D.C. area forecast: Cloudy today, with a chance of showers; heading warmer this weekend

** Winter weather advisory southernmost counties until noon(map) **

9:00 a.m. update: The winter weather advisory for the immediate area has been dropped. Since precipitation has shrunk to the south and shifted even further away, the odds of rain are probably down to a slight chance locally today.

7:40 a.m. update: The northern edge of the precipitation shield has shrunk to the south. Even getting any rain up here may be in question at this point. Certainly no weather worries for the rest of the morning commute.

6:10 a.m. update: Precipitation remains south of the area, a trend that may continue. Last night, models trended further south and east with the rain shield, and that seems to be verifying thus far. The closest precipitation is still mainly south of Frederickburg, Va. With temperatures in the upper 20s and lower 30s most spots, and sunrise less than a half hour off, it does not appear there will be any serious issues with the morning rush. If the rain shield to the south makes it into the area, it appears it will come in after temperatures rise above freezing, though some patchy light drizzle can’t totally be ruled out before then. Below is the latest short-term RAP model, showing the freezing line moving through the area at 9 a.m. and precip still to the south.

(Weatherbell.com)

(Weatherbell.com)

Today’s Daily Digit

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

2
High nearing 40 about the only positive, w/ light freezing rain threat early in a gloomy damp day.

Express Forecast

Today: Freezing drizzle possible, changing to rain showers (mainly S & E). Highs: 36-41.

Tonight: Showers possible early, decreasing clouds. Lows: Mid-20s to mid-30s.

Tomorrow: Sunshine should win over clouds. Highs: 51-58.

Sunday: Mainly sunny, cooler. Highs: 49-54.

FORECAST IN DETAIL


Radar & lightning: Latest D.C. area radar shows movement of precipitation and lightning strikes over past two hours. Refresh page to update. Click here or on image to enlarge. Or see radar bigger on our Weather Wall.

From 5:00 a.m.: You’ve got a reward coming after this morning’s possible frozen precipitation and today’s somewhat raw overall feel. A warm-up is eying us this weekend, and especially early next week. We should get a small taste tomorrow, with even Sunday’s cooler temperatures not feeling too wintry. By the time the workweek comes along, you may not want to do any work! Temperatures in the 60s are a good bet for at least a day or two. The main story: we shouldn’t have to bundle up as much after today, at least for a while.

Today (Friday): Commute cautiously since a slight chance of freezing drizzle or light freezing rain (perhaps a few pellets of sleet) could impact the area, mainly the southern Beltway or south and east. Any iciness should turn to liquid as we get past the 9-11 a.m. time frame, with north and west of town potentially dodging most or all of the bullet (even staying dry?). We have perhaps 50% chance of precipitation during the day in the city/south and east, with a 30% chance north and west. We’re on the edge of this system, so we cannot be confident on the precipitation’s duration or how far north and west it invades until it’s fully underway. I think ice accumulation should be negligible overall, but we all know it doesn’t take much.

Even near and around D.C., we shouldn’t see too much precipitation. A few spots well south and east like southern Va. and the Delmarva could have some more significant, respectable rain totals. The storm system should pull away by late afternoon to early evening, with most of us still managing high temperatures in the upper 30s to near 40. North winds around 10 mph could chill us a bit. Confidence: Low-Medium

Tonight: Some showers are possible (40% chance), mainly to the east of I-95 into the evening. Clouds remain until perhaps as late as dawn, but they are on the move out on the whole. Light northwest winds around 5-10 mph could assist us with drying out some, for those of us who see rain drops. Low temperatures may dip to the mid-20s well outside the Beltway to the north and west, but mid-30s are possible downtown. Confidence: Medium

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

Tomorrow (Saturday): This one has outdoor activities written all over it. Mainly sunny skies win out over the clouds for the most part, with high temperatures largely in the mid-to-upper 50s. Even a 60 degree reading is not out of the question south of the city, though if you’re well north and west low 50s are also possible. A light 5-10 mph northwest breeze shouldn’t bother us too much. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow night: Just a few showers may move in (15-25% chance), but nothing too heavy appears to be associated with a passing upper level disturbance. Perhaps a snowflake mixes in well north of town. Luckily this precipitation moves quickly and, as temperatures bottom out in the mid-to-upper 30s just before sunrise (did you move your clocks ahead one hour?), the showers should be done. Confidence: Medium

Sunday: This one has wide-ranging temperature potential. But, I believe the cooler air in the upper 40s to low 50s may dominate since we could have persistent north-northwesterly breezes during the day. Luckily we also have the potential for a good deal of sunshine as skies mostly clear out by midday. So, all-in-all, not too bad. Confidence: Low-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. More info

1 (→) Maybe a flake Fri AM, but mostly light ice risk. Possible storm a week away or so too far off for much worry.

Sunday night: Such late sun (an hour later, haha!), my eyes hurt! But, eventually, as teammate David Streit told us, “the quarter moon will be in conjunction with Jupiter overhead,” so enjoy the view. Low temperatures in the low-to-mid 30s look likely for the region. Confidence: Medium-High

Monday’s appearing quite nice with a decent amount of sunshine and temperatures around 60 possible, perhaps higher! Yes time for lunch outdoors, or a run, or… any recreation for that matter. Finally some very pleasant outdoor conditions! Confidence: Low-Medium

Tuesday’s sky conditions may have a bit more in the way of clouds, but we still enjoy temperatures likely in the 60s, with 70 degrees maybe even creeping in well south of town. We could upgrade this from “thaw” to perhaps, now, a legitimate warm up? Too bad it won’t last. The toasty conditions shouldn’t offend, since hopefully snow lovers have gotten their fill this year. Confidence: Medium

Ian Livingston contributed to this post.

Also on Capital Weather Gang

PM Update: Winter weather advisory for iciness Friday morning; Walter’s March lion