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D.C.-area forecast: Cold today before some snow Friday afternoon and night

Some accumulation possible Friday night. Windy and very cold over the weekend.

Blue sky on Wednesday over icy Reflecting Pool at the Capitol as sun rises Wednesday. (Jeannie in D.C.)
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Today’s daily digit

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

4/10: The sun’s quite bright, but our plight is the cold and it’s no delight.

Express forecast

  • Today: Sunny, only a light breeze. Highs: 35 to 39.
  • Tonight: Increasing clouds and calm. Lows: 23 to 29.
  • Tomorrow: Mostly cloudy with light snow developing in the afternoon. Highs: 36 to 40.

Forecast in detail

Cold air is well-stocked through the weekend. Now the question is whether there’s enough moisture for meaningful snow Friday afternoon into Saturday morning. We’re right on the edge of the storminess, but at least a little snow seems like a good bet before it turns windy and very cold later Saturday into Sunday.

Today (Thursday): If you are going out early, bundle up, as temperatures start the day in the teens. Plenty of sun and a light south wind do their best, but highs in the mid- to upper 30s are as good as it gets. Confidence: High

Tonight: Clouds gradually increase as the next surge of cold air starts to approach from the frozen Midwest. Winds are calm and lows are mainly in the mid- to upper 20s. Confidence: High

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for the latest weather updates. Keep reading for the forecast through the weekend …

Tomorrow (Friday): Clouds thicken as the day progresses with some light snow developing from west to east during the afternoon. Not much should accumulate during the daylight hours with above freezing temperatures. Breezes are light from the north amid highs mainly in the upper 30s. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow night: Periods of snow are likely and, with temperatures falling below freezing, some accumulation and slick travel are possible. The snow should tend to increase in coverage and intensity toward the Chesapeake Bay and Delmarva Peninsula. North winds gradually build and could be gusty by late night to blow around whatever has accumulated. Lows drop into the upper teens to lower 20s. Confidence: Medium

Programming note: We will have a new article and assessment of potential snowfall accumulation around midday Thursday.

A look ahead

Snow showers are likely to quickly diminish Saturday as the offshore storm heads for New England in a hurry. Clouds linger through most of the day. Brisk north winds make highs in the mid- to upper 20s painful. Skies clear overnight and lows fall to the low to midteens with bitter cold wind chills near zero. Confidence: Medium

Sunday is shivery cold despite plenty of sun. Highs only reach low to mid-30s. Overnight lows range through the teens under starry skies. Confidence: Medium-High

Skies remain mainly sunny on Monday, and highs creep up to the mid- to upper 30s to end the month. Confidence: Medium-High

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.

5/10 (↑): Some snow crosses the area Friday afternoon and night, possibly lingering into Saturday. Amounts are still a wild card.

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