Children play around cherry blossom trees in full bloom at the Tidal Basin in Washington on Saturday. (Jose Luis Magana/AP)

12:50 p.m. — Sunshine suppressed by stubborn clouds

Unfortunately, low levels clouds that developed this morning have lingered into the afternoon, especially along and north of Interstate 66. With another batch of clouds starting to stream in ahead of the next storm system, some areas will not see much of the sunshine we were previously forecasting this afternoon. Our forecast below has been updated.

Original forecast from 5 a.m., updated

Today’s daily digit

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

8/10: Rejuvenation sunshine situation. 5/10: No rain, but stubborn clouds hang around.

Express forecast

  • Today: Mostly cloudy. Highs: 55 to 60.
  • Tonight: Cloudy, rain late. Lows: 42 to 48.
  • Tomorrow: Rain. Highs: 48 to 54.

Forecast in detail

An active springtime pattern delivers back-and-forth conditions to our area by the day. We need to dry weather when we can (today and Thursday) and dodge the drops at other times (tomorrow and Friday). The final weekend of March looks complicated, with more rain and clouds, but temperatures should at least head briefly warmer by Sunday.

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Today (Tuesday): Initial morning cloudiness and patchy fog give way to mostly cloudy skies for most of the day as temperatures advance to highs from 55 to 60. More sunshine is likely in the southern part of the region. Light winds blow from the north at 5 to 10 mph. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Cloudy skies with rain returning around midnight. Temperatures drift downward to lows ranging through the 40s. Light winds blow mainly from the east. Confidence: High

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Tomorrow (Wednesday): Rain could be moderate at times in the morning before tapering to showers in the afternoon and ending by evening. High temperatures run cooler, in the upper 40s to mid-50s. Total rainfall from Tuesday night through Wednesday should range from 0.25 to 0.5 inches with locally heavier amounts. Light breezes mainly from the northeast at 5 to 10 mph. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow night: Evening showers possible, with mostly cloudy skies and lows reaching the upper 30s to mid-40s. Confidence: Medium

A look ahead

Thursday is our next chance to see some cheery sunshine as morning clouds make way for partly to mostly sunny skies by midday and afternoon. High temperatures range from 60 to 65 degrees. Thursday night brings the approach of yet another weather system with cloudy skies returning as lows range through the 40s. Confidence: Medium

Friday features mostly cloudy skies with potential periods of showers as a warm front lifts through the area. Highs should range from the upper 50s to the low 60s. Friday night remains mostly cloudy with scattered showers or periods of light rain again, with warmer lows in the upper 40s to low 50s. Confidence: Medium

Weekend details are tricky as a warm front attempts to pass north of us sometime on Saturday and then a cold front sweeps through from the west at some point Sunday. For now, highs Saturday could range from the 50s if the warm front is slower with more clouds and rain, or into the 60s if the system is faster, with partly cloudy skies and scattered showers. Then Sunday morning to midday look warmer, with mixed skies and scattered showers as temperatures burst into the upper 60s to low 70s, before conditions turn cooler again in the afternoon into the evening. Confidence: Low-Medium

Read more about Capital Weather Gang’s confidence rating.