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Posted at 8:20 AM ET, 11/20/2008

Forecast: Briefly Milder Today Then Colder Again

By Josh Larson

* CWG's Winter Outlook and Q&A | Late Morning: Photo Contest Winners *

After two days in a row of temperatures that didn't make it past 40 in most areas, we'll see the cold air retreat a bit today (in relative terms, as temperatures will still be below normal). But a reinforcing shot of cold air will dive into the area by tomorrow bringing blustery winds, abnormally low temperatures and the chance for a few flakes on Friday. Cold high pressure will foster a sunny, dry weekend with slowly moderating temperatures.


Temperatures: Current area temperatures. Powered by Weather Bonk. Map by Google. Hover over and click icons for more info. Click and hold on map to pan. Refresh page to update. See map bigger on our Weather Wall.

Partly sunny, milder. Mid 40s. While air temperatures today won't be quite as nippy as the past few days -- thanks to a bit of slightly milder air creeping into the area ahead of another blast of cold air -- blustery conditions will still make it feel plenty cold. A mix of clouds and sun will produce afternoon highs in the mid 40s. Northwesterly winds from 15-25 mph will yield wind chills in the 30s, however, and temperatures may fall rather noticeably by late afternoon.

Quite cold again tonight with partly cloudy skies and winds diminishing somewhat. Temperatures should drop to the low 20s in places like Oakton and Germantown and to the upper 20s downtown.

Confidence: Medium-High

Does it get any warmer? Keep reading for the forecast through the beginning of next week.


Mostly cloudy, flakes? Upper 30s. We plunge head first back into the ice box on Friday as a reinforcing shot of Arctic air infiltrates the region courtesy northwesterly winds at 10-15 mph. There may well indeed be some scattered snow showers around too, but temperatures will be too warm for any accumulation. So don't get too excited. Afternoon highs won't make it much past the mid-to-upper 30s with wind chills only in the 20s.

Light winds and clear skies will provide for the coldest temperatures yet this season on Friday night, with lows eventually dropping to the upper teens in the coldest areas to the mid 20s downtown.


You know we're in an abnormally cold air mass when, despite full sunshine on Saturday we'll still struggle to hit the 40-degree mark -- more than 15 degrees below normal. Clear and frigid once again Saturday night with lows dropping to near 20 across across the colder spots to the mid-to-upper 20s downtown. Confidence: High

Plenty of sunshine will be on tap again on Sunday, though temperatures won't be quite as cold. I'm thinking the mid 40s for afternoon highs -- still considerably lower than where we should be this time of year. It will be noticeably milder Sunday night with overnight lows ranging from 30-35 area-wide. Confidence: Medium-High

The outlook for Monday is complicated due to the uncertain timing of a cold front. With low confidence, I'll call for mostly cloudy skies with a 50/50 chance of mainly afternoon and evening showers. Temperatures will likely be in the mid 40s for highs and above freezing for overnight lows. Confidence: Low-Medium

By Josh Larson  | November 20, 2008; 8:20 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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I saw my first flakes this morning on my way into the office! Just a few, hardly able to be seen, but now I can join into the region's excitement from earlier this week. {Smiles}

Posted by: JJones-CapitalWeatherGang | November 20, 2008 8:35 AM | Report abuse

I saw a nice little patch of snow coming down this morning near Shirlington! Ready for the big stuff though.

Posted by: AnneinSand | November 20, 2008 8:49 AM | Report abuse

I am in Minnesota and we had a snow shower this morning. Wind blowing 10-15 mph with temps in the low 20's. Shocked to see no snow on the ground. I just can't win! :(

Back in DC later today.

Posted by: stinkerflat1 | November 20, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse

Glad a few people saw flakes this AM! There's a better chance tomorrow, though, so keep your eyes peeled. Be glad it's snow, too, because out here in Colorado we had freezing rain this morning.

Posted by: Josh-CapitalWeatherGang | November 20, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Today feels like November to me. Not January or September. November. Perfect.

But I'm upset that all of my bus-waiting days this week happened to fall on the January days.

Can anybody tell me why the flakes that fell on Tuesday looked like tiny compact little cylinders instead of snowflakes?

Posted by: LaurainNWDC | November 20, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Flurry Scurry 2008!

Hi again folks! Snowy Hill here... That's right, we're back at Winter Central looking forward to a nice coating of SNOW tomorrow!

Buster: Don't get everyone worked up again Snowy. This is the first forecast for a trace of snow, and it never happens. Look at Monday and Tuesday. Five ice pellets hit in Crystal City.

Snowy: Buster, there is a nice low forming, plenty of moisture as seen in the dew points, and plenty of wonderful coooold air coming from Santa's Workshop!

Buster: Do I need to have the 'Santa' talk with you again...?

Snowy: Keep looking up folks until the ground is turning white. We'll be back later with more winter weather coverage!

Posted by: snowynbuster | November 20, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Welcome back Snowy and Buster!

Posted by: LaurainNWDC | November 20, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

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