* Winter weather advisory this morning for northern Maryland; watch for slick spots areawide *
6:30 a.m. forecast: A batch of light snow passed by over the past few hours, leaving a coating to a few tenths of an inch of accumulation across the local area.
I think there’s a decent chance this pre-dawn zone of snow is the biggest part of this event locally. While there’s still some activity on radar, most of it is in northern Maryland or farther north at this time, and there isn’t a whole lot to the west still to come through.
We do run the risk of snow showers over the next few hours before it all moves away entirely later this morning. Anything that falls will stick, and given that what already fell has covered sidewalks plus roadways, do take it slow out there.
From 5 a.m. …
TODAY’S DAILY DIGIT
A somewhat subjective rating of the day’s weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.
5/10: Some snowflakes should make another (briefly less) cold day a little more enjoyable, at least for people like me!
Today: Morning snow showers, then clearing. Highs: Low to mid-30s.
Tonight: Mostly clear, breezy. Lows: Near 10 to near 20.
Tomorrow: Partly cloudy, breezy. Highs: Near 20 to mid-20s.
New Year’s Day: Mostly sunny. Highs: Near 20 to mid-20s.
View the current weather conditions at The Washington Post headquarters.
FORECAST IN DETAIL
After a few winters of warmth, it seems more and more like this cold air is payback. The first big blast of cold continues in its slightly eased fashion today, after a bit of morning snow, but the next round of bitter air is on the way. We’re back in the deep freeze for the change from 2017 to 2018. All signs point to more cold as we drift into the new year as well. At least we’re getting used to it?
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Today (Saturday): It’s possible the most consistent wave of snow comes through before sunrise. If so, a coating to half an inch or so could be on the ground by that time. Do use caution if out, as surfaces are likely to be slick in places. Any activity in the morning should be mostly light, and it could be broken in more of a snow shower fashion. We should see all snow taper off relatively early, from west to east during the mid-morning or so. By noon it should be all out of the region, other than a flurry or two. We’ll have a window in the afternoon where we might rise to and above freezing ahead of the next blast of cold air. If we do, it’s just a temporary streak breaker. We should see some sun at least. Highs are mainly in the low and mid-30s. Confidence: Medium
Tonight: The next Arctic front is moving through by the evening. Behind it, winds crank back up out of the northwest, and air fresh off the frozen tundra filters in. You’ll probably want to be inside for the night, as wind chills are likely to approach zero. Actual temperatures range from about 10 to 20 across the area. Winds are about 15 to 20 mph with higher gusts. Confidence: Medium
Tomorrow (Sunday): It’s as cold a New Year’s Eve as anyone’s seen around here lately. In fact, there’s a good chance the high temperature is colder than any since the 1960s. Near 20 to mid-20s should do it. We’ll see some more in the way of clouds at times, but it should stay dry. Winds are still there, gusting near 25 or 30 mph in the afternoon. Confidence: Medium
Tomorrow night: Still cold if you’re headed out. Way cold. Wind chills head toward zero as 2018 approaches and overnight lows end up in the single digits to teens. If it wasn’t still breezy and we had some decent snow cover, zero wouldn’t be too hard. Nonetheless, you might not have to go far to find it. Confidence: Medium
A LOOK AHEAD
New Year’s Day Monday is one of those days that looks beautiful, until you step out into it. Actually, a diminished wind might help it not be too bad. The real question is how much the wind diminishes. I think it stays up enough to be annoying, at least here and there. Temperatures are still in the near 20 to mid-20s range for highs. Uncle. Confidence: Medium
By Tuesday, we’ve got a big warm up underway. Okay … not really. Sorry. It’s mostly clear, but the weak January sun doesn’t do a whole lot other than add light to the day. Highs might edge up a bit, toward the mid- and upper 20s. Confidence: Medium
SNOW POTENTIAL INDEX
A daily assessment of the potential for at least 1 inch of snow in the next week, on a 0-10 scale.
3/10 (→): After any Saturday snow, not a whole lot on our plate. But we’re heading toward peak snow season.