7:40 p.m. update: After easing earlier this evening, snow and mixed precipitation have redeveloped some over region, especially from the District north. This is a bit of a surprise as short-term models didn’t show much happening this evening. Because temperatures have fallen near and below freezing, snow and sleet could accumulate a bit (a coating to an inch, perhaps) over the next couple of hours, especially in our northern suburbs. Untreated roads and sidewalks could become slick for motorists and pedestrians, so take it slow.
Original post from 4:40 p.m.
Today was rather crummy. If you were well north or west, you might already have some snow on the ground. In most other places, it’s largely just been cold and wet with some sleet and a few snowflakes mixed in. For Washington snow lovers, it does seem our long wait is almost over. Of course, you can hardly ever count on snow here until you’re measuring it!
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Through tonight: This is a two-round event. Round 1 is basically over. The transition might not be totally dry, but intensity and coverage of precipitation should wane for a while. In this time, some spotty rain and/or snow showers are possible. Temperatures are near and below freezing in many locations and, as darkness settles in, some slick spots could form on untreated surfaces, especially north and west of the Beltway. Pedestrians and motorists should use caution this evening.
As we get past midnight and toward dawn, the next round is inbound from the southwest and south. This may start up as a mix, but it should transition to mostly snow in our area over time as we get into and past sunrise. Temperatures don’t move much, mainly hanging out within a few degrees of freezing. You’ll want to take it slow as some slick spots are likely to develop.
View the current weather conditions at The Washington Post.
Tomorrow (Wednesday): Mixed precipitation should continue changing over to snow as it becomes steadier and heavier in the morning. Although there might not be much on the ground when you wake up, moderate snow is then likely for a good chunk of the day, and periodic heavy snow is a risk, too. We’ll also see winds kick up with time, so it’s going to get nasty out there.
Heavy snow could reduce visibility and even cause tree limbs to break, which could bring down power lines. Please follow this post for the latest details on the snow forecast: Washington’s biggest snowstorm of the winter likely Wednesday, starting before dawn.
Temperature-wise, there’s really no guarantee that we’ll get above or much above freezing, especially if snow sticks around all day. Pauses in the snow, however, could allow temperatures to rise into the mid-30s in some areas. But even highs in the mid-30s are historically low for this time of year, as explained below.
Record watch: Wednesday’s snow could go down as our biggest snow of the winter as we begin spring, the biggest since 2016, and one of the biggest so late in the season. Should we surpass 2.2 inches, it would be the most snow so late in Washington since 1964. Here are the daily snowfall records for March 21:
- Reagan National — 5.3 inches in 1924
- Dulles — 2.3 inches in 1964 (Dulles has a much shorter record, dating to the 1960s)
- BWI — 9.7 inches in 1964
In addition, forecast temperatures are about as cold as they can be this time of year. In fact, should they stay below 36 degrees, it would mark the coldest so late at Reagan National Airport.
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