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Posted at 11:45 AM ET, 02/27/2009

Forecast: Mild Showers, Then Winter Returns

By Josh Larson

Messy weekend mix possible. Another storm after that?

* Snow Lover's Crystal Ball: A Pair of Weekend Storms *


Today: Cloudy with mainly p.m. showers. 60-64. | Tonight: Some evening showers. Near 40. | Tomorrow: Mostly cloudy & much cooler. Late-day showers. Low 40s. | Saturday night: Cold rain. Snow and sleet, too? Low 30s. | Sunday: Cloudy. Chance of rain/snow early. Near 40. | A Look Ahead


A roller coaster of late-winter weather is likely over the next several days. Temperatures will range from mild today to raw over the weekend. The cold front bringing the cool down pushes through the area with some showers today. A storm then develops along the front as it stalls to the south, potentially bringing us a messy wintry mix late Saturday into Sunday.

Today (Friday): Despite overcast skies, a strong southerly flow will push highs to near 60 in most spots, maybe some low-to-mid 60s. A few scattered showers are possible through the morning but probably nothing too disruptive. From around noontime and through evening we run the risk of occasional but more widespread light to moderate showers. Expect winds from the south around 10-20 mph. Confidence: Medium

Tonight: Overcast skies and a chance of showers continue into the evening. Then, any showers should come to an end overnight as skies partially clear. Lows eventually drop into the upper 30s to near 40 area-wide. Confidence: Medium

Keep reading for the potentially messy weekend forecast and what may lie beyond...

Tomorrow (Saturday): We'll see a lull in precipitation for the first half of the day Saturday with, perhaps, some peeks of sun during the morning hours. A 10-15 mph breeze from the north will keep highs from going very high -- likely in the low 40s. Many areas will probably see showers redevelop by late afternoon. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow Night: Saturday night may prove to be quite messy. Toward evening, rain changes to a sloppy snow/sleet/rain mix. Mainly north and west of D.C., there may even be times of all snow and/or a touch of freezing rain. A gusty 15-30 mph wind will blow from the north as lows dip to the low 30s.

At the moment it looks like accumulations, if any, would likely be minor for D.C. and points south and east, but potentially a little more significant north and west of the District. See our Snow Lover's Crystal Ball for more details.

Confidence: Low-Medium

Sunday: A mix of rain, sleet and snow is possible early Sunday morning, with temperatures holding in the low-to-mid 30s. I believe we'll dry out by late morning. Cloudy skies will probably hang around, however, as will blustery 15-30 mph winds from the north. Afternoon highs will try (though may not succeed) to break 40. Confidence: Low-Medium


A second storm bears watching for the threat of wintry weather Sunday night and Monday. But right now there's a decent chance it largely misses us to the south and east. Either way, Monday should be windy and cold -- we may not make it out of the mid-to-upper 30s. Confidence: Low

The outlook for Tuesday calls for dry weather and partly sunny skies with temperatures probably not quite as chilly (though still below normal) -- around the low-to-mid 40s for highs. Confidence: Medium

Updated Friday Feb. 27 @ 3:15 p.m.

By Josh Larson  | February 27, 2009; 11:45 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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Next: Winter's Not Done Yet: A Pair of Weekend Storms


We definitely see a very complex situation evolving this weekend into Monday with three systems (cold front, coastal low pressure and coastal low #2) affecting our area. One weather model has started trending #2, which is Sun night and Mon morning, back toward us again. Keep an eye out for updates! -Matt Rogers, CWG

Posted by: mrwx1 | February 27, 2009 8:19 AM | Report abuse

Matt - you are such a tease!! What does that all mean?

Posted by: someonelikeyou | February 27, 2009 8:31 AM | Report abuse

Well, if storm number 2 decides to get more friendly with us Sunday night, we could have a messy Monday morning commute with accumulating snow around the area. -Matt, CWG

Posted by: mrwx1 | February 27, 2009 8:42 AM | Report abuse

Both the NAM and GFS are trending toward Sunday night into Monday being the greater threat.

Posted by: AugustaJim | February 27, 2009 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Very true, Augusta Jim, which is why the upcoming midday models will be quite important. Matt, CWG

Posted by: mrwx1 | February 27, 2009 8:49 AM | Report abuse

For once I'm not dreading the possibility of snow because I'm on leave for a few days. Bring it on!

Posted by: natsncats | February 27, 2009 8:49 AM | Report abuse

If the storm on Sunday night into Monday pans out to be all snow - what type of accumulation potential are we looking at?

Posted by: snowlover | February 27, 2009 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Snowlover, the potential accumulation range is too broad right now...could be nothing if storm stays farther offshore or we could see our biggest (only?) notable storm of the winter with 3-6" if it hugs the coast. My feeling is that the system will be too fast to do much more than the top end of that range. -Matt, CWG

Posted by: mrwx1 | February 27, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

The 06z models are only the beginning of a trend, which the 12z runs may or may not continue. As Matt points out,the 12z suite will be very important.

It would be a little premature to advertise accumulations on the beginning of a trend, but if it continues and amplifies, we could be looking at a significant system..

Posted by: AugustaJim | February 27, 2009 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Sweet - Thx guys! I will keep my fingers crossed!

Posted by: snowlover | February 27, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Am hearing that 12Z Nam is shifting east.

Posted by: ThinkSpring | February 27, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

The second storm for Sunday night/Monday was and remains a big question mark.


Yes--the latest NAM gives us very little for the second storm.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | February 27, 2009 9:47 AM | Report abuse

I think early Sunday morning has the potential to be pretty messy around here...and especially as you head west and northwest.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | February 27, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

The NAM though has been the LEAST reliable model this year. I'll take a healthy dose of the Euro with a little dash of GFS and see what they have to say.

Posted by: hobbes9 | February 27, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

One of the midday models is arriving now and it is trending the Sunday night system back east again...drier, less snow, dusting(?) for us...the uncertainty continues unfortunately. -Matt, CWG

Posted by: mrwx1 | February 27, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

ok, from all that careful discussion of the possibilities, i heard 3-6" of SNOW sunday-monday. i've already pictured the beautiful scenery and children playing... it appears i'm definitely pro-GFS (someone once called it the good-for-snow model).

my rational mind fears it won't be cold enough...

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 27, 2009 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Matt, assuming you are referring to the 12z NAM... it looks like the 500mb setup is better than it was last night for the area even if precipitation amounts look somewhat marginal. Small changes run to run seem to be having big impace with what looks to be a sharp western cutoff on precip, but there is still a ton of potential out there.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | February 27, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

"set up is better"!
"ton of potential"!

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 27, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Henry Margusity is calling for more snow in Atlanta and Richmond then here for the Sunday night/Monday event.. In other words, looks really good for us to finally get a decent snow event (while Atlanta gets rain and Richmond "some" snow).

Posted by: ZmanVA | February 27, 2009 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Ian, that's a good point. This is still a very interesting situation worth monitoring closely. -Matt, CWG

Posted by: mrwx1 | February 27, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Are you toying with us again?

I'm still waiting for this winter's big blizzard.

Posted by: avoiceinRockville | February 27, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

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