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D.C.-area forecast: Windy and cold into Wednesday, with gusts over 40 mph

Warmer 60s return on Thursday and Friday, as winds ease

A plane approaches Reagan National Airport on Sunday. (Joe Flood/Flickr)
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* Wind advisory until 2 a.m. Wednesday for gusts up to 40 to 50 mph *

Today’s daily digit

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

3.14/10: A punishing wind chill will make warmer days seem like pi in the sky.

Express forecast

  • Today: Mixed skies, windy. Highs: 42 to 46.
  • Tonight: Clear, cold, windy. Lows: 24 to 33.
  • Tomorrow: Sunny and brisk, but not as cold. Highs: 50 to 55.

Forecast in detail

As a powerful coastal storm wallops New England, the Mid-Atlantic gets blasted by strong, chilly winds for the next 36 to 48 hours. Not until late Wednesday will winds start to ease and temperatures return closer to normal. Winterlike weather shifts to springlike Thursday and Friday when we surge into the 60s. The warmth is short-lived, though, as another big cold front arrives late Friday into early Saturday, with another colder-than-average weekend.

Today (Tuesday): Mixed skies with intermittent periods of partial sunshine and cloudiness. A quick snow flurry isn’t out of the question as clouds pass by. Aggressively cold winds blow as highs only manage to reach the low to mid-40s (about 10 degrees colder than normal), with wind chills in the uncomfortable 30s. Those winds howl from the northwest at 25-30 mph, with gusts over 40 mph as the afternoon wears on, so secure any loose outdoor items. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Skies are mostly clear, but there’s still a biting wind as lows dipping into the mid-20s to low 30s feel even colder. Winds from the northwest continue at 20-25 mph, with gusts above 40 mph possible in the evening. Confidence: Medium-High

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Tomorrow (Wednesday): Sunshine dominates, but those gusty winds struggle to settle down. Highs reach the low to mid-50s, but winds from the northwest at 20-25 mph, with gusts 30-40 mph, still pummel us. Confidence: High

Tomorrow night: Mostly clear as winds finally relax. It’s cold, with lows from the mid- to upper 20s in our cooler suburbs to the low 30s in the city. Confidence: High

A look ahead

Thursday starts a more robust warming process, with morning sunshine giving way to increasing afternoon cloudiness as highs move into the low to mid-60s. Mostly cloudy and not as cold Thursday night with lows mostly in the 40s. Confidence: Medium-High

Friday is our warmest day of the week with mostly cloudy skies and highs well into the 60s. Scattered showers are possible Friday afternoon and then likely Friday night as a cold front approaches. Lows Friday night drift into the 40s as winds pick up yet again. Confidence: Medium

The weekend brings another round of colder-than-normal conditions. Clouds are expected Saturday with morning showers and breezy conditions, with highs in the low to mid-50s. Clearing and colder Saturday night with lows in the 20s to low 30s. Sunday looks partly sunny, breezy and chilly, with highs in the 40s to near 50. Confidence: Medium