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D.C.-area forecast: It’s frigid for the entire first week of 2018

An icy Capitol Reflecting Pool on Dec. 31. ( <a href="">Jason Vines via Flickr</a> )
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A somewhat subjective rating of the day’s weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.

2/10: Despite the brutally cold beginning, hope is alive for plenty of warm sunshine in 2018!


Today: Mostly sunny, very cold and breezy. Highs: 19-24.
Tonight: Clear, windy and bitterly cold. Lows: 8-13.
Tomorrow: Mostly sunny, still breezy and unseasonably cold. Highs: 20-25.

View the current weather conditions at The Washington Post headquarters.


The first week of 2018 may well rank among the coldest starts to a calendar year in Washington’s recorded history. Temperatures have a hard time rising above freezing as highs frequently stall in the mid-20s, when we’re lucky. Lows most nights plummet to the teens and single digits. Gusty winds frequently make it feel even colder, near and below zero at times. While we’ll need to monitor an ocean storm making its closest approach Thursday, snow chances appear to be low like last week — with flurries most common.

Listen to the latest forecast:

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Today (Monday): Happy new year! 2018 greets us this morning with wind chills near zero and air temperatures in the teens. Despite plenty of sunshine, these temperatures aren’t going far, with highs struggling to make much headway above 20. With breezes from the northwest at 10 to 15 mph, wind chills hover in the single digits and low teens. Confidence: High

Tonight: Arctic cold continues funneling into the region overnight as winds from the northwest at 10 to 15 mph persist. With air temperatures falling to near 10 degrees, that means dangerously cold wind chills near and below zero at times, under mostly clear skies. Confidence: Medium-High

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for the latest updates. For related traffic news, check out Dr. Gridlock. Keep reading for the forecast through the weekend…

Tomorrow (Tuesday): We should lose a bit of the wind Tuesday (decreasing to 5 to 10 mph) but, after such a cold start, temperatures have a hard time going up too far. Despite sunshine, highs are only 20 to 25. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow night: Clear, calm and bitter cold. Lows range from 5 to 10 in our colder areas to 10 to 15 elsewhere. Confidence: Medium-High


Wednesday may be one of the milder days of the week, but highs still struggle to reach freezing. A sunny start to the day turns partly cloudy by evening. Confidence: Medium-High

Wednesday night and Thursday we’ll need to watch the western periphery of a rapidly developing ocean storm. The areas most likely to get scraped by some snow are over the Delmarva. West of the Chesapeake Bay, the chance of snow decreases from 40 percent in our eastern areas to 10 percent toward Interstate 81. Temperatures mostly hold in the 20s as winds crank up. Confidence: Low-Medium

Thursday night through Saturday has the potential to be one of the coldest stretches the region has seen in years. As the ocean storm explodes off the Northeast coast, it drives punishing winds (gusting up to 30 mph) and frigid air south on its backside. High temperatures struggle to escape the teens while lows are in the single digits in many areas. Wind chills at times could drop to near minus-10. Confidence: Medium

By Sunday, winds should abate and temperatures moderate, with highs 30 to 35, as clouds increase some. Confidence: Medium

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

2/10 (↓): An outside chance we get scraped by an ocean storm Thursday, but this cold is so extreme it’s keeping storms away.