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Posted at 3:15 PM ET, 02/11/2008

CommuteCast: Candidates in the Cold

By Ian Livingston

Temperatures moderate tomorrow as precipitation arrives

Update (8:30 p.m.): The latest data indicates an increasing chance for some iciness in the northern and western suburbs tomorrow afternoon. Check back later on tonight for more details.

After a numbing morning, daytime highs have topped out in the upper 20s to near 30 across the region. This morning's low temperature of 16 degrees at Reagan National was the lowest of the season thus far, besting a low of 18 degrees on January 21.

While it was also frigid at other area reporting stations, including 13 degrees at Baltimore Washington International and 14 degrees at Washington Dulles International, lows stayed slightly above the high single digits seen at those locations on January 21.

Temperatures will begin to drop for the evening commute home, or to local political events, under clear skies and slackening winds.

Tonight: Another cold one is on tap area wide tonight. Temperatures will drop back into the mid and upper teens in places like Reston and Rockville while falling to near 20 degrees in the city and to the low 20s near Camp Springs and Clinton. Mostly clear skies will give way to increasing clouds by morning as the next weather system begins to affect the region.

Tomorrow: Potomac Primary Tuesday will begin mostly cloudy and cold. Clouds will lower through the day and precipitation will begin to enter the area by afternoon. Even with the cold start, temperatures are currently expected to rise high enough to minimize the threat of wintry precipitation troubles. Some snow and sleet may fall at the onset tomorrow, especially to the north and west of DC, but highs in the upper 30s will keep roadways mainly wet instead of icy. Rain chances will increase through the evening and is likely Tuesday night.

See Jason's forecast for the rest of the week and a glance at the weekend.

By Ian Livingston  | February 11, 2008; 3:15 PM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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Agusta Jim, Cap Team:

I had a question about NAO? It seems over past 10 years we have been in an unusual positive NAO cycle. Here are the NAO stats dating back to 1800. It looks like our latest positive trend is unusually long. I wonder if the prolonged positive NAO trend has anything do with global warming. What do you think?

Here is a link to the records chart

Posted by: ChrisfromVA | February 11, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Big question for me is how rain tomorrow night could affect my attempt to get to the swing dance. This will likely depend on how windy it gets, especially just after 8 PM.

Positive NAO is bad news for snow around here and may have something to do with our continual dry winters. It would really help us for SNOW if we started getting a negative NAO.

Posted by: El Bombo | February 11, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

John, we had a vote the other night and two entries tied, so you have to either change your name back to the "retro" John Andre (El Bombo) or just plain Bombo....sorry, but we had a vote and rules are rules my native Wisconsin friend!

Posted by: Mike from the Blue Ridge | February 11, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

I know, I know. I was looking at the Weather Channel and they were saying snow for tonight. That can't be right. Okay not much snow, but snow none the less.

Posted by: aggsie | February 11, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Aggsie, there may be some snow in the air late tonight west of Dulles. Probably not much if there is.

Posted by: Ian, Capital Weather Gang | February 11, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Ian. A girl can dream.

Posted by: aggsie | February 11, 2008 5:04 PM | Report abuse

No I doubt the NAO is in any way related to global warming. This just is neither a cold nor snowy place in which we live. That's it.

The Blizzard of 1996 was at one of the highest points as well.

Posted by: Period | February 11, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Oooh, nice new "At A Glance" graphic!

Posted by: ~sg | February 11, 2008 6:02 PM | Report abuse

For those watching Topper Shutt's new TV promo touting his popularity among CWG posters: I got a reply from Topper to my email asking that WUSA 9 post the promo on their website! He doesn't think they'll post it, darn. Here's the full text of Topper's reply:

"I do not think we can post the link. The promo says I was picked as the favorite DC weatherperson by the Washington users.

I hope this helps.


Posted by: `sg | February 11, 2008 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Any news on the possibility of snow this weekend ?Seems like we usually get a nice President's Day storm. We can hope, can't we ?

Posted by: Jenn in Reston | February 11, 2008 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Clouds coming in already, temps won't fall so fast this evening. They won't rise much tomorrow, though. Weather service has a wintry mix here in Loudoun tomorrow, how 'bout a SLCB? Or an accumulation map? Just bugging you guys about making a forecast, because you're usually the ones who are (closest to) right. :-)

Like the At-A-Glance as well, I've been waiting for it for a while!

Posted by: Model Monkey | February 11, 2008 7:28 PM | Report abuse

Went hiking this afternoon, absolutely gorgeous blue sky...the cold seemed to keep the people away,as I saw one person in a park that usually sees a few visitors everyday even in winter. As far as tomorrow, I'm thinking the onset of this is gonna be frozen, temps tonight probably won't fall to much more, but with clouds tomorrow temps will be slow to rise. With single digit/negative dewpoints, and humidity levels in the 20's/30's it will take a while for precip to work its way down to the ground. Could even see temps drop a little with onset of precip. Will be fun to watch tomorrow, although I don't think to much will come of this...I will definitely be keeping an eye on it..

Posted by: arnoldkh | February 11, 2008 8:10 PM | Report abuse

Your question is prompted by false data that Columbia should be ashamed to publish!
The chart you studied indicates a positive NAO from 1980-2000. The following are some examples of this falsehood: late 1980-mid 1982 - 2.0 negative, late 1984-mid 1985 -1.0 negative, mid 1987 -1.0, mid 1993 -2.75, mid 1995- mid 1998 peaked at 2.80 negative. This low resolution chart should at least indicate negative spikes.

For whatever reason, someone decided to skew the data, or didn't care enough to insure accuracy. Either is unforgivable!! We certainly don't wish for this to occur in a consideration as important as climate change.

Posted by: Augusta Jim | February 11, 2008 8:42 PM | Report abuse

New NAM still only brushes NW portions of area with some light snow or flurries on front end of storm.... holds much of the precip off till temps warm later tomorrow PM/tomorrow night.

Posted by: Ian, Capital Weather Gang | February 11, 2008 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Lets face it guys this area is not condusive to snow! Yes we do get big snows every once and a while, but more times then not we will end up on the warm side of the tracks! Sure we will have years where we will experience the exception to the rule, but lets face it year-over-year we will not see big snows! Maybe that is why we love it sooooo much :)

Posted by: Snowlover | February 11, 2008 9:23 PM | Report abuse

You may be surprised to learn that Dulles averages more than 6 inches greater annual snowfall than Cincinnati Ohio (on the cold side of the track). Dulles 22.3, Cincinnati 16.0. Things seem bleak in this area because we have been in a snow drought since 95-96 except for 02-03.

This will change.

Posted by: Augusta Jim | February 11, 2008 9:54 PM | Report abuse

AJim-I love your infusion of hope! :)

Posted by: missy | February 11, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

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