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Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 01/13/2009

Forecast: Polar Plunge

By Matt Rogers

No-go on snow

* Inauguration Weather: Latest InaugurationCast | Commentary: Stop the Scaremongering | Later this morning: Record Cold for Reagan *

EXPRESS FORECAST

Today: Mostly cloudy. 42-46. | Tonight: Windy. 22-26. | Tomorrow: Cloudy, cold. 30-34. | A Look Ahead

FORECAST IN DETAIL

With the coldest air of the winter season aiming for the D.C. area this week, one would believe that our best chance of snow would also be at hand. But alas, the D.C. snow drought is forecast to continue. Weak weather systems will race north and south of the area, offering only fleeting chances of flurries or snow showers. Otherwise, get ready for brutal polar air especially on Friday.

Today (Tuesday): Look for more clouds than sun today, but temperatures will still make their way into the low-to-mid 40s due to south and southwest winds ahead of the next cold front (scheduled arrival: this evening). Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: The early evening cold front could trigger some rain or snow showers briefly around the area. But the odds are looking low right now (about 30%). Low temperatures should drop into the 20s tonight, but the winds will pick up, so it will feel like the teens. Confidence: Medium

Keep reading for the forecast through the Inauguration and Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend...

Tomorrow (Wednesday): A mixed day is expected with morning sunshine and then rapidly thickening cloud cover during the afternoon. High temperatures will struggle to break above freezing. Winds should lighten up compared to tonight's levels so wind chill might make it feel like the upper 20s at times. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow Night: A weather system will sweep to the north and a trailing cold front will approach. This gives us a 30% shot at snow showers after midnight and toward dawn. No significant accumulation expected if anything manages to happen. Low temperatures will be chilly with lower to middle 20s. Confidence: Medium

A LOOK AHEAD

On Thursday, we could still get a few wind-whipped flurries around the area. Temperatures will again struggle to break above freezing (29-33) and winds will be strong from the northwest at 25-35 mph. Confidence: Medium

Friday could very well be the coldest weather of the winter so far and the winter remaining. Morning lows are expected to be in the single digits in the outlying suburbs and I would not be surprised to find a sub-zero in the typically colder locations. For the city, the low temperature could get as low as 10. Much will depend on how calm the winds get and how much cold air gets pulled down with this Polar plunge. Confidence: Medium

The Martin Luther King Jr. and Inauguration Holiday Weekend starts very cold again with a possible repeat of Friday morning (single digits and teens) on Saturday morning. Highs on Saturday should recover to around 30. The overall weekend looks dry, but there is an outside chance of snow showers Sunday night (20% currently). Look for Sunday and MLK Day highs in the 30s to 40s with lows in the 20s in the city and teens in the outer 'burbs. Confidence: Low-Medium

By Matt Rogers  | January 13, 2009; 11:00 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: InaugurationCast: The Cold Should Hold
Next: Inauguration Weather: Record Cold for Reagan

Comments

I am going to "urgently" enjoy today.. since it is the mildest day of the week!

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | January 13, 2009 7:03 AM | Report abuse

I'm getting excited for the cold weather. Bring it on!

Meanwhile, as I'm battling this whatever it is (sore throat, headache, everything else...), this is making me feel better. We weather lovers will love this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dqw2KOOzdzQ&feature=related

Posted by: weatherdudeVA | January 13, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

**DC Area Global Warming Liquidation Sale**

ALL ITEMS MUST GO!!!
*Snow Shovels
*Snow Brushes
*Ice Scrapers
*Snow Plows
*Salt trucks
*Salt Houses (can be rented out for
weddings and Bar Mitzvahs)
*Snow Emergency Route Signs
(perfect wall art for college dorm rooms)
*

Posted by: prayforsnowDC | January 13, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Hah, prayforsnow.

Just yesterday I looked up how often DC has had a snowless winter . . . I'm feeling this year might be added to the list.

Posted by: ah___ | January 13, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Can anyone comment on why the local radar has all of that pink? I think that that represents ice in the form of clouds perhaps? Thanks!

Posted by: stewardsteven | January 13, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

At least we're back to 22 for Friday and Channel 9 is down to 20! We can hold back the global warming a bit.

But why does it have to be so darned DRY??? Now that we are getting the cold air in place, can't we just advect in some Gulf moisture & get the SNOW MACHINE rolling??? Or do we have to settle for some icy mix or, worse yet, RAIN for the Inauguration??? What has happened to the old-fashioned snowstorms of days past??? We could still have a snowless winter, though it's generally wise to wait until the Presidents Day holiday is in the books before giving up on winter.

Right now, all we need is a big high over Quebec and a coastal jet setting up in the right spot, and we could be getting all the snow we've asked for AND THEN SOME!!! Bring on that "Knickerbocker" redux...

Posted by: Bombo47jea | January 13, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

I believe the only two winters in recent memory in which DC recorded only a trace of snow (no measurable snow) were '73-'74 and '97-'98. I've given up on getting any snow, lets go for the record!!!!

Posted by: prayforsnowDC | January 13, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

El Bombo -

La Nina and the lack of any discernible southern branch of the jet stream happened, unfortunately. La Nina just KILLS everyone south of about a line from the middle of PA through mid Ne Jersey.

Posted by: jahutch | January 13, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

prayforsnowDC -

2001-2002 was also bad, featuring I believe 0.1" of snow. Many areas around here saw that amount with the clipper in December, but DCA did not, so officially, we still sit at T for the winter thus far.

Posted by: jahutch | January 13, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Looks like Sterling's first forecast that includes next Tuesday has low 30s and a 30 percent chance of snow....

Posted by: ValleyCaps | January 13, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

NWS has a 30% chance of snow Sat and Sun for Centreville. Comments?

Posted by: mchristinaw | January 13, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

The crystal ball indicates a dusting of snow!

Posted by: Rivy1 | January 13, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Today in Minneapolis the current temp is -19 and the wind chill is -34... but it warms up next week to the low 20's... but you'll be getting all of this nice frosty air pretty soon... enjoy! OH yeah CWG, PLEASE let people know that when the temp is that low coupled with the bumper2bumber traffice back there, BLACK ICE WILL BE FORMING... PLEASE TAKE HEED!

Posted by: oda155 | January 15, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

...maybe if its cold enough and there's any water vapor or crystals in the air you guys will get to see some "Sun Dogs"...

http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&q=sun+dog&um=1&ie=UTF-8&sa=X&oi=image_result_group&resnum=4&ct=title

We get here just about every morning.

Posted by: oda155 | January 15, 2009 11:01 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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