Radar courtesy MyRadar | © OpenStreetMap contributors

* Flash Flood Watch until midnight *

12:30 p.m. — Downpours exit. Showers and storms this afternoon should be hit or miss.

The heaviest showers and storms have exited the region to the northeast. We should be dry more often than not this afternoon but widely scattered showers and storms could still develop. Given the saturated ground, it will not take much new rain to cause isolated areas of flooding.

9:45 a.m. — Widespread downpours with a few areas of flooding. Rain should ease some by this afternoon.

Radar shows moderate to heavy rain with some embedded thunder and lightning over much of the immediate region (rain cuts off in our western areas, west of Germantown and Dulles). The heaviest activity is generally south of the Beltway between southern Fairfax County and southern and central Prince George’s County. A flash flood warning is in effect until 1:45 p.m. for southwestern Prince George’s County and northwest Charles County.

Earlier, extremely heavy rain fell just west of Dale City, prompting a flash flood warning, which remains in effect until 11 a.m. The heaviest rain has ended there, but two to four inches fell and creeks and streams are still rising.

Model forecasts suggests the steadiest rain today will last through midday or early afternoon with more widely scattered showers after that. In other words, the best chance of dry hours may be after 2 p.m. or so.

In addition to the flash flood warnings, there are also several general flood warnings across the region (for more gradually developing flooding) due to overflowing streams and creeks. These cover the area around Fairfax, and most of our southern suburbs.

Detailed forecast

Today’s daily digit

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

4/10: High humidity is not pleasant, nor are storm risks ever present.

Express forecast

  • Today: Humid with showers/storms likely. Highs: 80 to 85.
  • Tonight: Scattered showers/storms persist. Lows: 67 to 73.
  • Tomorrow: Showers/storms and humid. Highs: 82 to 87.

Forecast in detail

High humidity fuels showers and storms today through the weekend, but at least they knock the heat down a bit. This is going to be a “whack-a-mole” kind of pattern, never quite knowing who is going to get poured on at any time. There will be plenty of dry intervals between downpours. In fact, it will be dry more often than wet. In the end, most of the area is likely to see at least an inch of rain and substantially more in hardest hit areas.

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Today (Thursday): Showers and thunderstorms are possible anytime. Locally heavy downpours are likely, and some pockets of flooding cannot be ruled out. Highs should only be in the low to mid-80s given the showers, but a stray reading in the upper 80s is still possible in a storm-free zone. Winds are minimal and humidity is high (dew points in lower 70s). Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Thunderstorms should quiet as the night progresses, but scattered showers may persist with locally heavy downpours still possible. Winds are mainly calm and lows hold in the upper 60s to lower 70s. Confidence: Medium-High

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Tomorrow (Friday): Showers and thunderstorms remain active. The risk of heavy downpours remains, but upper-air winds should start to pick up a bit so they are less prone to just sit over any one area. Winds are minimal except in storms. Humidity holds at levels making highs in the mid-80s uncomfortable. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow night: Shower activity should taper off later at night. Calm and humid conditions persist. Lows slip to the upper 60s to lower 70s. Confidence: Medium-High

A look ahead

Predawn risers on Saturday may get a glimpse of the crescent moon nearly touching Venus. For the rest of us, just another day of scattered showers and thunderstorms and high humidity. Highs are only in the low 80s at least. Evening showers should again taper off overnight with lows mainly in the upper 60s. Sunday’s weather should be nearly identical. Confidence: Medium

Monday still has a risk of showers, but the bulk of them may finally have moved off to the east to leave us on the drier side for a change. Highs creep up to the low to mid-80s. Confidence: Medium