Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
The new Washington
Post Weather website
Jump to CWG's
Latest Full Forecast
Outside now? Radar, temps
and more: Weather Wall
Follow us on Twitter (@capitalweather) and become a fan on Facebook
Posted at 9:50 PM ET, 12/20/2008

Icy Late Night for Metro Area and Points N&W

By Jason Samenow

Winter Weather Advisory 11 p.m. tonight through 10 a.m. tomorrow

* Outlook into early next week? Full Forecast | SkinsCast *

A cold wind from the north has caused temperatures to fall into the low 30s. Overnight, as one area of low pressure passes to our north and west, and another develops to our south, a wintry mix of sleet and freezing rain is likely across large parts of the area.

The impact on travelers will be minimized because 1) most of the precipitation will fall after midnight and before mid-morning tomorrow when few people will be on the roads, and 2) near-freezing overnight temperatures should rise above freezing early-to-mid morning tomorrow, changing any lingering precipitation to plain rain (especially in the District and south and east).

Keep reading for more information...

From the National Weather Service's Advisory Statement:




Be especially careful on ramps, bridges, and overpasses if you're out late tonight or very early tomorrow.

By Jason Samenow  | December 20, 2008; 9:50 PM ET
Categories:  Updates  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Forecast: Clouds, a Quick Mix, then Cold
Next: SkinsCast: Windy and Very Cold


Wait, let me guess: three sleet pellets followed by drizzle and that's our glorious winter wonderland. The DCA snow total will be "Trace" and precip. total will be 0.02". But area schools will still have a 2 hour delayed opening on Monday.

Meanwhile, NYC will get 6" of snow and Boston 25" of snow.

This area's winter climate sucks. Ditto it's torpor-inducing summer climate.

We are never going to have a snowstorm here ever again.

Posted by: Arcturus | December 20, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

plane leaving from 800 from national tomorrow morning...what do you think? any delay?

Posted by: cjespn | December 20, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

What possibilities are there that could casue more snow and sleet with this storm? The secondary low is stronger and draws in more cold air? The primary low tracks a bit more eastward? Thx!

Posted by: snowlover | December 20, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

To snowlover:

The probability of that is as follows: Zero.

This is D.C. we're talking about and we don't get "weather" in a meaningful sense of that term, including winter weather. If you want snow, you have to go to a snowy climate. It's not going to happen here.

Posted by: Arcturus | December 20, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

is there even a chance we get any snow tonight

Posted by: redskinsfan01 | December 20, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

It has in the recent past - didn't we get pounded by a huge snow storm back in 2003 or 2004? I think I remember getting 20-30 inches of snow in one storm. So it does happen, just not that often.

Posted by: snowlover | December 20, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Contrary to what some may believe, this latitude does historically receive a reasonable amount of snow annually.

As I have repeated several times, the past several seasons have had a very unusual pattern that no human being understands.

How long will this last? Nobody knows, but when it changes we will receive a bonanza that will have many complaining about the inconvenience of all the snow and ice!

Posted by: AugustaJim | December 20, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

I would just like to know how the NWS justifies not putting Culpeper under the WWA. I know it really does not matter but how can madison be under it and not us. Many times its raining in madison and snow here so they can not honestly say that madison will get frozen precip and we won't! It just doesnt make sence to me.

Posted by: clintonportis17 | December 20, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

AugustJim wrote: "As I have repeated several times, the past several seasons have had a very unusual pattern that no human being understands."

I believe it's correlated to the following formula:

Snowfall at National Airport, denoted Sn(DCA) = (A+B-C)/Z

where A = number of sunspots;

B = Average return on the Dow Jones Utility Index in the past 9 months;

C = strength and mode of PDO minus ENSO plus the NAO divided by the QBO all raised to the power of the MJO;

Z = Number of times Jim Cantore appears on the Weather Channel in breathless mode over anything in the preceding six months.

Posted by: Arcturus | December 20, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

You have probably nailed it !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: AugustaJim | December 20, 2008 6:29 PM | Report abuse

I can only offer the following anecdotal (but personal) information: my bad leg aches. My friend, the one with RA, has been griping since noon that she aches.

Usually, when we ache, something bad is coming!

Posted by: Va_Lady2008 | December 20, 2008 6:51 PM | Report abuse

Snowfall totals 4 the last 8 Dec-Feb
Average 12.7". Take out 02-03 40" & the other 7 yrs has averaged 8.7".
00-07 Dec - 2.9 average
01-08 Jan - 3.1 "
01-08 Feb - 6.7 "
Average minus 02-03
Dec - 2.3"
Jan - 2.9"
Feb - 3.6"
7 of the last 8 previous winters have av. less than 9"/winter.
Dec will drop to 2.5 av. without anymore snow this month.
Looks like this winter could be shaping up as a less than 9" winter.

Posted by: VaTechBob | December 20, 2008 6:57 PM | Report abuse

hey clintonportis17, madison co has higher elevations, and the town of culpeper is 413ft, madison is 604ft. i am still trying to figure the higher elevation thing out, were it counts and were it dont. funny thing is the last storm, i asked about madisons higher elevation. i was shocked when the warning last week, just a few hours after my post said elevations over 200ft would ice. thats a first for my ears.

Posted by: deveinmadisonva | December 20, 2008 7:24 PM | Report abuse

It is currently 31 degrees here.

Posted by: Snowman_In_Herndon | December 20, 2008 8:15 PM | Report abuse

frz rain here in madison va ice on windsheld,swingset and other colder objects

Posted by: deveinmadisonva | December 20, 2008 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Winter Weather Advisories are about to be extended to include DC, Prince Georges, Anne Arundel, Culpeper and Orange counties per NWS LWX.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 20, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

deveinmadisonva- yeah I just checked into it myself and indeed the NWS did extend them to culpeper and orange. I wasnt really complaning that they didnt b/c really its not going to be a big deal. I'm pretty sure we won't see a WWA or WSW or Winter Storm Warning for a while after this. So its nice to see i guess lol. My gut feeling is telling me we won't see our first warning until February. Winter isnt even winter around here anymore!

Posted by: clintonportis17 | December 20, 2008 9:45 PM | Report abuse

oh and it is 31 here to. Channel 7 said they expect temps to say between 37-42! haha id say there a little off in areas!

Posted by: clintonportis17 | December 20, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse


I think any airport delays tomorrow morning would be minor.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | December 20, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

If you guys and gals really, really want a white Christmas, just invite former V.P. Gore to give a speech on global warming and schedule it for Christmas Eve.


I have 8 inches of fresh snow on my back porch and it is still falling!

Chains are now officially required.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 20, 2008 11:31 PM | Report abuse

SOMETHING is falling outside--I'm assuming snow, but the precip is so light it could easily be freezing drizzle.

Posted by: KBurchfiel | December 21, 2008 12:41 AM | Report abuse

First pings of sleet here in the Leesburg area. (1:05am)

Posted by: GregRAINMAN | December 21, 2008 1:06 AM | Report abuse

Looks like the UFP (unidentified falling precipitation) was actually freezing rain. The ground is pretty slick already.

Posted by: KBurchfiel | December 21, 2008 1:35 AM | Report abuse

Doesn't look like anything is falling here in Lake Ridge.

Posted by: meta2 | December 21, 2008 1:54 AM | Report abuse

Some decent freezing mist falling here in columbia. Cars are coated. Roads are still in good shape though.

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 21, 2008 2:09 AM | Report abuse

Slid around a bit while out driving a few minutes ago here in Rockville. Had to pop her into 4x full time for safe measure. Some roads are already treated, others are not. The back deck and steps are coated in ice. Good glaze on parked cars.

Posted by: Havoc737 | December 21, 2008 2:17 AM | Report abuse

Heavy burst of sleet and maybe a little snow here is Leesburg at the moment. (2:43am) - Car is coated in a fairly thick glaze of ice. Very dangerous from the look of things. Could this be upgraded to a WSW?

Posted by: GregRAINMAN | December 21, 2008 2:44 AM | Report abuse

Greg, if you've got what you'd say a dangerous glaze going on in Leesburg, I'd probably side with the fact that we may be looking at some upgrades here. Haven't checked outside since I've been in, but I may venture out here in a few minutes. I did notice it was in the mid 20's here, plenty cold enough to rapidly chill most surfaces.

Posted by: Havoc737 | December 21, 2008 3:25 AM | Report abuse

Condition update:
Here in Rockville although the temperature is hovering around 25 degrees, the road in front of my house, and my driveway, seem to be only wet. My bushes have hardly a coating of ice, and as for my deck, it is very slick. Still drizzling here currently.

Posted by: Havoc737 | December 21, 2008 3:30 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2012 The Washington Post Company