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Posted at 12:10 PM ET, 01/18/2009

Forecast: No Go for Accumulating Snow Tonight

By Brian Jackson

* Inauguration Weather Forecast and What to Wear *

EXPRESS FORECAST

Today: Mostly cloudy. 37-40. | Tonight: Mostly cloudy. Flurries? 24-27. | Tomorrow: Mix of clouds and sun Chance of light snow. 30-33. | A Look Ahead

FORECAST IN DETAIL

Snow lovers lament while inauguration planners rejoice: any chance we had for a significant snow tonight has gone by the wayside (update: but see Chance of Light Snow Tomorrow). The flakes we squeeze out late this afternoon or tonight will probably be of the conversational variety with little or no accumulation. Cold weather will remain the story. Even as it relaxes some today, it will re-assert itself tomorrow and Inauguration Day.

Radar: Latest D.C. area radar loop shows movement of precipitation over past two hours. Powered by HAMweather. Refresh page to update. Click here to see radar bigger. Or see radar bigger on our Weather Wall.

Today (Sunday): An approaching cold front and moist flow from the south will produce considerable cloud cover. The southerly flow will also help temperatures climb up to near 40 degrees -- a welcome (but temporary) relief from the recent bitter cold for afternoon concert-goers at the Lincoln Memorial. Don't be completely surprised if there's a stray flurry late in the afternoon. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: The storm that once offered snow potential will get its act together too far to the northeast to enhance snow chances tonight. Instead, a passing cold front provides merely a 30% chance of the white stuff. It could snow enough to coat your car by early morning but don't expect much more than that. Skies will continue to be cloudy with overnight lows in the mid-20s. Winds will be shifting to out of the northwest around 10 mph. Confidence: Medium-High

Keep reading for the forecast through your mid-week...

Tomorrow (M.L.K. Jr. Day): [Update: this forecast has been updated to include a 50% chance of snow throughout the day. See: Alert: Chance of Light Snow Tomorrow.] The morning will continue to hold a slight chance of flurries (20%) but again, accumulations will be very minimal. While it will be warmer than we saw late last week, mostly cloudy skies and a biting wind from the north at around 15 mph will keep conditions very winter-ish. Afternoon highs will be just above freezing with wind chills in the 20s. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow Night: Monday night will continue our frigid stretch of weather. I can't rule out a stray flurry or two but most will only be seeing mostly cloudy skies. Temperatures will again fall into the upper teens for most of us, with the lower 20s downtown. Winds will continue to make it feel colder than it is, blowing out of the northwest at 5-15 mph.
Confidence: Medium-High

A LOOK AHEAD

If you're one of the millions heading downtown on Inauguration Day, be sure to check out our very cold, detailed Inauguration Weather Forecast...

On Wednesday, mostly sunny conditions return to our area, though don't expect much of a warm up. At least, visitors will have clear sailing on their way out of town after the celebrations. We'll be seeing plenty of sun and afternoon highs in the mid 30s to greet the return to work for most of us. Confidence: Medium

By Brian Jackson  | January 18, 2009; 12:10 PM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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Next: Alert: Chance of Light Snow Tomorrow

Comments

Temps. warmed 10 degrees from 7 pm Sat. to 7 am today!! 27 degrees and cloudy this morning.

Though the threat has diminished for DC short term, it appears that weak low pressure moving along the NC/Va. border may give central and south parts of Va. an inch or two of snow tomorrow. Both the NAM and GFS agree to this.

Posted by: AugustaJim | January 18, 2009 7:38 AM | Report abuse

Right now its snowing in Charlotte, Philadelphia, NYC, and Boston, while we get dry slotted. Go figure!

Posted by: bdeco | January 18, 2009 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Don't look now, but the 12z NAM is giving the area some accumulating snow Monday night into early Tuesday. Maybe the winter is finally going to throw the area a bone?

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 18, 2009 9:30 AM | Report abuse

I noticed the NAM threat late yesterday, when the model started showing precipitation to our south for Monday night. I thought it might trend north with today's runs. But, before getting too excited, it appears to be a system that could underachieve or miss us to the south. Maybe it will overachieve expectations? We'll have to wait and see, but the good news is we wont have to wait long.

Posted by: Kevin-CapitalWeatherGang | January 18, 2009 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Current temp. in Burke: 35.6 with overcast skies.

I hope it won't be too cold when I go to the inauguration concert today. :)

Don't fall for the tricks of the models! Too many times have we been disappointed because the models show us a potential accumulating snow event a few days out. But when we're a day or two away from the anticipated storm, the models back out.

Posted by: Yellowboy | January 18, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

I noticed the NAM threat late yesterday, when the model started showing precipitation to our south for Monday night. I thought it might trend north with today's runs. But, before getting too excited, it appears to be a system that could underachieve or miss us to the south. Maybe it will overachieve expectations? We'll have to wait and see, but the good news is we wont have to wait long.

Posted by: Kevin-CapitalWeatherGang | January 18, 2009 10:14 AM | Report abuse

I'm not sure why I had a double post. Anyway, I agree, it's good not to fall for a single model or run. We'll have to see if the there is support for snow from other models later today and tonight.

Posted by: Kevin-CapitalWeatherGang | January 18, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

I am not sure if one has been done in the past, but have you ever given thought to doing a weather model tutorial discussion. If not, do you have a good resource you could point me to so that I could learn how to read the different models? Thanks!

Posted by: snowlover | January 18, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Sterling Update: QUICK UPDATE FOR MONDAY... THE 12Z RUNS OF THE NAM/GFS INDICATING A BIT STRONGER SFC LOW DEVELOPING ACROSS SRN VA AND CLOSER TO THE DC
METRO AREA. INCREASING POPS FOR TMRW AND THE GRIDS WILL REFLECT THE CHANGE. MORE ON THIS FOR THE AFTN FORECAST PACKAGE.

Maybe some hope for Monday coming back...

Posted by: MWoerner | January 18, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

The charts I'm seeing don't seem to show much chance of accumulating snow for the foreseeable future. We'll be well into the Obama administration before our next big snowstorm the way it looks here. On the other hand, accumulating snow interferes in a big way with dance schedules, more so than extreme cold.(Not to mention Inaugural plans!)

This dry cold is extremely hard on plants due to the lack of snow cover. Fredericksburg, VA had 2 below zero yesterday.

Also, Verkhoyansk had 0F at 6 AM local, w. snow flurries while Oymyakon was at minus 24F. The Siberian "heat wave" continues.

Vaisala reports a recent lightning strike in West Virginia this morning, confirmed by NALDN as "cloud-to-ground". Appears to be somewhere between Charleston and Morgantown. [Could we have a chance of thunder here as the cold front passes?]

Posted by: Bombo47jea | January 18, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

The good thing is we really will not have to wait long to be disappointed; however it is some encouraging news to see that the NAM and GFS are on similar boats now. Let's see what happens when the next suite comes in. Remember, recently, a good many of these systems on the short range were showing a lot more precip than actually verified. Take New York City; In the last 10 days they had 3 separate snow events that were forecasted to bring 3-5, 2-4 and I believe 3-6 and about 1 inch verified for each of the 3 events. So we'll never really know until it's on top of us.

Posted by: PC09 | January 18, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

The 12z NAM and GFS are trending a little north with weak low pressure tomorrow.

My comments from 7:38 this morning will now apply farther north, perhaps even the DC area.

Posted by: AugustaJim | January 18, 2009 12:11 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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