AREA FORECASTS

WASHINGTON: Today, becoming mostly sunny, windy, cooler. High 66. Wind northwest 15-25 mph. Tonight, clear, chilly, diminishing wind. Low 44. Wind northwest 5-10 mph. Friday, sunny, tranquil. High 68. Wind east to southeast 6-12 mph.

MARYLAND: Today, becoming mostly sunny, windy, cooler. High 65-68. Wind northwest 15-30 mph. Tonight, clear, chilly, diminishing wind, frosty spots. Low 37-40. Wind northwest 5-10 mph. Friday, sunny. High 68-71. Wind east to southeast 6-12 mph.

VIRGINIA: Today, becoming sunny, windy, cooler. High 64-67. Wind northwest 15-25 mph. Tonight, clear, chilly, diminishing wind, frosty areas. Low 35-38. Wind northwest 4-8 mph. Friday, sunny, bright. High 67-70. Wind east to southeast 6-12 mph.

Recreational Forecasts

MOUNTAINS

Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia: Today, sunny, breezy, cool. High 53-58. Low 33-38. Wind northwest 10-20 mph. Friday, sunny, a milder afternoon. High 58-63. Wind south 6-12 mph.

BEACHES

Maryland and Delaware: Today, becoming mostly sunny, windy, cool. High 63-68. Low 40-45. Wind northwest 20-30 mph. Friday, sunny, tranquil. High 65-70. Wind east 6-12 mph. Surf 65-68.

Virginia: Today, becoming mostly sunny, windy. High 70-77. Low 45-50. Wind north to northwest 12-25 mph. Friday, sunny, tranquil. High 68-73. Wind northeast 5-10 mph. Surf 67-70.

BOATING

Upper Potomac River: Today, becoming sunny, windy, cool. Wind northwest 15-30 knots.

Lower Potomac and Chesapeake Bay: Today, becoming sunny, windy. Wind northwest 15-30 knots. Waves 2 feet on the lower Potomac and 2-3 feet on the Chesapeake Bay.

River Stages: The National Weather Service estimates the stage at Little Falls to be near 4.0 feet this morning and predicts the stage to fall slightly to 3.9 feet Friday morning. Flood stage at Little Falls is 10 feet.

PLANER WATCH

Sun

Rise: 7:16 a.m.

Set: 6:32 p.m.

Moon

Rise: 11:53 a.m.

Set: 10:00 p.m.

Mercury

Rise: 9:14 a.m.

Set: 7:20 p.m.

Venus

Rise: 3:35 a.m.

Set: 4:33 p.m.

Mars

Rise: 12:55 p.m.

Set: 10:03 p.m.

Jupiter

Rise: 7:00 p.m.

Set: 8:15 a.m.

Saturn

Rise: 7:44 p.m.

Set: 9:22 a.m.

Uranus

Rise: 3:38 p.m.

Set: 1:46 a.m.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Forecasts for Washington area, 202-334-9000 code 9100.

Long range regional forecasts, 703-260-0405.

Chesapeake Bay boating forecast, 703-260-0505.

Recreational and traveler's forecast, 703-260-0706.

Smithsonian Institution star/planet information, 202-357-2000.

Air Quality Index, 202-962-3299

For hourly updates of major cities on the internet,

http://www.weatherpost.com