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D.C.-area forecast: Much cooler today into midweek, rain likely Monday

Spring colors outside the National Gallery of Art on Saturday. (Brian Paeth/Flickr)

10:30 a.m. update: Frost advisories and freeze warnings have been posted for most areas north and west of D.C. with chilly temperatures on the way for tonight. The frost advisory is in effect from midnight to 9 a.m. Monday and includes Howard, Montgomery, Loudoun, Prince William and Fauquier counties. The freeze warning covers points further north and west including Carroll and Frederick counties and is also in effect from midnight to 9 a.m. Monday.

Residents in those areas under a frost advisory or freeze warning should take care to protect sensitive plants.

Today’s daily digit

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

6/10: It’s a cool and breezy day for Easter egg hunts and other outdoor activities, though the mid-April sun should make things feel a little warmer this afternoon.

Express forecast

  • Today: Mostly sunny and much cooler with a gusty breeze. Highs: Mid- to upper 50s.
  • Tonight: Partly cloudy and cold. Cover outdoor plants. Lows: Mid-30s to near 40.
  • Tomorrow: Mostly cloudy with rain likely by midday. Highs: Near 50 to low 50s.

Forecast in detail

A cool and breezy Easter Sunday is followed by an even colder start to the workweek, with rain arriving by late Monday morning or early afternoon, maybe even starting as a bit of wintry mix north and west of D.C. Sunshine returns on Tuesday as temperatures begin a gradual warming trend through midweek with dry conditions expected.

Today (Easter Sunday): We’re in the cool 40s this morning with below-average temperatures holding throughout the day. Be sure to grab a jacket if you’re heading out, and you may want to hold off on the egg hunts until it warms up a bit later in the day. Afternoon highs should get to the mid- to upper 50s with mostly sunny skies and a consistent breeze from the northwest gusting near 30 mph. Confidence: High

Tonight: Skies start off mostly clear but turn partly cloudy overnight as temperatures turn crisp with diminishing winds. Frost is possible in our close-in suburbs, and temperatures could even dip close to freezing at higher elevations well north and west of D.C. Be sure to cover any sensitive outdoor plants and vegetation as lows bottom mainly in the mid-30s to near 40. Confidence: Medium-High

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

Tomorrow (Monday): Colder air remains in place as skies turn mostly cloudy ahead of an approaching storm system. The morning should start dry, but rain is likely by late morning or early afternoon, and it could be heavy at times into the evening. The precipitation could even start briefly as a wintry mix north and west of D.C. (but with temperatures well above freezing). Highs only reach near 50 to the low 50s. Confidence: Low-Medium

Tomorrow night: Rain continues into the evening and may not move out until mid-to-late evening. Eventually we could see clearing skies toward dawn with lows in the low 40s. Confidence: Low-Medium

A look ahead

An area of high pressure builds in by Tuesday with partly to mostly sunny skies and gusty winds. Daytime highs probably stall in the 50s, and Tuesday night looks cold and crisp with lows mainly in the mid-30s to near 40. We’ll monitor for a frost or freeze, especially at higher elevations north and west of D.C. Confidence: Low-Medium

Plenty of sunshine and a comfortable spring day on Wednesday. Daytime highs in the low 60s are still slightly below average, but with the sunshine many may not notice. Enjoy the day! Confidence: Medium