It was the coolest day since late May as clouds kept temperatures in the 60s in most spots. Back then, everyone was complaining about the endless cloudiness and rain, but now it’s a bit more welcome as we usher in fall. Next up might be dealing with the “too dry” problem.

Through Tonight: Showers and storms to the west continue to move this way headed into evening. There’s some indication that the first batch, which would move through by late evening, might fall apart a bit on approach. That’s because our air mass is quite stable. Nonetheless, shower chances grow by 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., out west at first. Any thunder risk is minor given the cooler air around. The most widespread activity should tend to focus later at night as the cold front itself nears and passes the area. It could be widespread light-to-moderate stuff in the near-midnight through near-sunrise time-frame. This is mostly a few tenths of an inch of rain, at most, but we’ll take it. Lows dip to the upper 50s and lower 60s. A few patches of fog are possible late night.

View the current weather conditions at The Washington Post.

Tomorrow (Tuesday): The most consistent rain should be winding down near sunrise if it hasn’t done so already. Any rain after that time should be quite light and probably more scattered. It’s hard to totally rule out raindrops into midday, though. With time, more and more breaks are likely. We could end up partly cloudy in the afternoon. Highs range from near-70 to the mid-70s. Winds are from the north in the morning, but flip back toward the south by late day.

See Jason Samenow’s forecast through the weekend. And if you haven’t already, join us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram. For related traffic news, check out Dr. Gridlock.


Farmers market in Bethesda. (Joe Flood via Flickr)

Pollen update: Mold spores are MODERATE/HIGH. Tree pollen is LOW/MODERATE, with elms the main producer right now. Grass and weed pollen is low, as ragweed season starts to come to a close.

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Just the start? It has been dry recently. But that’s typical of late summer and much of fall. So is the risk of big rain events. We might be staring one down later this week and into the weekend.


500mb vorticity on today’s Global Forecast System model run. This shows the mid-level storm sitting and spinning to our west. (College of Dupage)

Why? That loop above tells much of the story. A big ole’ mid-level low-pressure system gets into a stuck pattern while dropping to our west. Some locations on the east and northeast side of that low are likely to see periods of moderate-to-heavy rain, some of which could really add up. Flooding could certainly become a risk somewhere.


Rainfall forecast for the next seven days from the Weather Prediction Center. (NOAA)

“Cutoff” lows, or those not strongly influenced by the overall jet stream, are notoriously difficult to predict. Some models show the rain focusing on our area. Others are focusing elsewhere. We’ll need to watch and fine-tune, but the threat is certainly there. For now, it seems rain from this system could start as soon as Wednesday, but Thursday seems like the bigger risk for the beginning of heavier activity.