The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

D.C. area forecast: Snow showers may impact the evening commute as frigid air dives in for a weekend visit

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

5/10: Evening snow showers may impact commute. Less wind makes clouds seem tolerable. Just really bundle up!


Today: Cloudy, chilly. Snow snarls late? Highs: Upper 20s to low 30s.
Tonight: Snow wanes, winds increase, skies clear. Lows: Teens to near 20.
Tomorrow: Windy, frigid. Highs: Near 20 to mid-20s.
Sunday: Mostly sunny, lighter breeze. Highs: Low-to-mid 20s.


Today’s cold, and this weekend’s even colder. As that next cold punch to the gut arrives, some snow showers may whip through the area this evening. Given that it’s been cold, some road problems could arise. This weekend features truly bitter cold, so count on needing that scarf, gloves, hat—even balaclava—regardless of precipitation threat or not!

Today (Friday): Nice sunrise alert? Let us know! Mainly overcast skies reign but at least lighter 5-10 mph southerly breezes shouldn’t make it feel too bitterly cold. Temperatures slowly rise to the upper 20s to low 30s for highs. A late afternoon snow shower band (50% chance) could snarl the evening rush hour so stay tuned. We’ll want to start watching for snow shower activity out ahead of the Arctic cold front by late afternoon into evening. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Snow showers (50% chance) are a risk this evening into early overnight. This activity may impact parts of the commute, though the main risk may be later into the evening. Anything that falls can stick, and there’s the chance of upwards of an inch or so if it maximizes potential. Slick spots are certainly a threat if this comes together. Around or after midnight, winds shift behind the front into the northwesterly direction, and boy do they gust toward 30 mph a few times. Pre-dawn low temperatures bottom out in the the teens most spots, maybe 20 or so downtown. Wind chills easily reach the single digits. Use ALL the winter gear! Confidence: Medium-High

For related traffic news, check out Dr. Gridlock. Keep reading for the forecast into next week…

Tomorrow (Saturday): Welcome to the tundra. Arctic northwesterly winds continue to gust at or above 30 mph at times, especially midday into afternoon. High temperatures struggle to near 20 and perhaps as high as the mid-20s D.C. and southeast. Wind chills in the single digits (or lower) mean continued use of ALL the gear. Sunshine may dominate over periodic clouds, but it’s of little use. Isolated afternoon snow flurries or a snow shower (20% chance) can’t be totally ruled out either. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow night: Northwesterly winds luckily “diminish” to around 20 mph, with fewer big gusts intermixed. Mentally prepare for District of Canada as temperatures drop into the single digits in most locations, perhaps around 10 degrees downtown. Wind chills are the main concern, dipping to around 10 below zero. Bitter, frigid, out of synonyms… cold. Confidence: Medium-High

Sunday: Sunnier than Saturday most likely but–yep–snuggle weather it is for Valentine’s Day. High temperature get capped by this frigid air still in place. Highs make the low-to-mid 20s. Brrrr. Breezes may remain somewhat noticeable as well. Note the air is very dry so lots of static “sparks” are possible. That can be fun sometimes? Confidence: Medium-High


Sunday night: Cold again, with a mix of clouds and clear skies, allowing some stars to shine through. Overnight low temperatures downtown may attempt to hover around 20 degrees by just before dawn. Outside of the Beltway, teens are easily attainable, it appears. Continue to bundle up! Confidence: Medium

A developing storm system overspreads the region on Monday into Tuesday, likely beginning as snow and ending as rain. High temperatures on Monday range from near 30 to the mid-30s as light snow becomes more likely late day or into overnight. After what should be minor accumulations at the start of the storm, it seems we should want to transition over to rain. It could get briefly mild on Tuesday with highs headed through the 40s and maybe even above 50. There’s still a good deal of uncertainty here, so this forecast is of course subject to change! Confidence: Low

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

4/10 (↑): A few spots may near 1″ Friday evening if snow squalls materialize. Perhaps a more widespread risk on Monday.