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Posted at 3:30 PM ET, 02/17/2009

PM Update: Calm Before Tomorrow's Storm

By Ian Livingston

Brief morning snow or mix changing to rain Wednesday

* Historic Snow Drought? | Korea in Search of Top Forecaster *

Lots of sunshine and light winds led to a near-normal late-winter day. Highs have topped out in the low-to-mid 40s across the area, and temperatures will hold steady through sunset before falling back through the 30s. Clouds increase tonight ahead of a storm tomorrow that may bring just a touch of wintry weather early in the day before rain sets in. After that, any real snow prospects out there?

Webcam: Latest view of D.C. from the Netherlands Carillon at Arlington National Cemetery. Courtesy National Park Service. Refresh page to update. See this image bigger on our Weather Wall.

Tonight: High clouds will be on the increase early and they will lower and thicken by morning. Lows should range from the mid-20s in the suburbs to right around 30 degrees downtown.

Tomorrow (Wednesday): Precipitation will likely enter western portions of the area by the morning commute and advance east. It may start as a period of light snow before changing to rain by late morning. Any snow accumulations would be minor, but a dusting is possible in some places. Intermittent rain then continues through evening before ending overnight. Highs should top out in the low-to-mid 40s.

Late tomorrow night, winds will pick up from the west and northwest, gusting up to 25 mph.

See Matt Rogers' forecast through the weekend.

Model Musings: Several midday models are advertising a snowy solution for a possible storm early next week behind a clipper system moving through this weekend. Both the ECMWF (what is the ECMWF?) and GEM (what is the GEM?) showed significant snow falling in the area by next Monday. Is this believable in a winter of so little snow? Maybe not, but hey... we can still hope.

By Ian Livingston  | February 17, 2009; 3:30 PM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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Next: Up to an Inch of Snow Possible Tomorrow Morning


Meteorologist Dave Tolleris of posted a new analysis of the snowy ECMWF/GGEM solutions of today. It can be found here.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | February 17, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Here we go again...massive model-based snowstorm leading to massive disappointment.

Posted by: worldtraveler | February 17, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Not really on-topic, and not sure if anyone is interested, but Weather Underground has a promotion going on for a free one-year membership. The details are Here.

Keeping my fingers crossed for one more productivity-busting storm this year....

Posted by: SkywalkerSS | February 17, 2009 4:27 PM | Report abuse


Dave's post was great! It seems to many things have to happen just right and in a winter when things don't want to go right I have my douts. IMO GFS has the right solution.

Posted by: clintonportis17 | February 17, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

WeatherGang, is the D.C. area below the normal rainfall average for this winter? It seems like it has been exceptionally dry, but maybe's that's just my dry skin talking.

Posted by: UMDTerpsGirl | February 17, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

clintonportis17, I certainly have plenty of doubts as I'm sure most others do. BUT, it's not an illogical solution and the wave in question is now over Alaska so it might be getting better sampled by the models. It will be interesting to see if tonights have the storm or not. We are a *little* closer in than other phantom model threats this winter.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | February 17, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps...maybe...talking about snow potential is sort of like talking about a no-hitter in the 5th inning? If we stop talking about it, it will happen?

Posted by: phanieb | February 17, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

I don't know, as a model gazer I'm not buying into this storm. Maybe later if we can get the GFS and other models to jump on board, then I will start to hope. Long-range forecasts have been especially terrible this year.

I'm trying not to get my spirits up, though, so I won't be disappointed again :-)

Posted by: Sterlingva | February 17, 2009 6:34 PM | Report abuse

We seem to be getting quite a few rain forecasts this winter but they tend to "bust" when the storms pass north of us. Low dewpoints all winter could be a major cause.

Not sure about that snowstorm next week. TV mets are tending to downplay it. We've had a few promising model forecasts that "busted".

Posted by: Bombo47jea | February 17, 2009 6:47 PM | Report abuse

The 12z Euro that is creating so much hype is just that, HYPE.

The Euro is a little better than the GFS at 100-200, but has made made many mistakes.

One run means nothing!! The 00z is likely to change.

The 18z GFS hints at a southern connection, but don't bet the bank.

This nonsense has occured many times this winter!!!!

If the 00z runs continue this trend, then begin to get excited, but not before then.

Posted by: AugustaJim | February 17, 2009 7:58 PM | Report abuse

After many forcasted storms that haven't panned out this season, I can't believe anything anymore. It's kind of like listening to A-Rod talk. You just don't know what to believe...

Posted by: bodyiq | February 17, 2009 8:07 PM | Report abuse

aren't we passed 00z? what is it showing? can i get excited yet?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 17, 2009 9:03 PM | Report abuse


Very sorry, But......

The 00z runs won't be rolling in until midnight. There is a 4-6 hr. lag time depending on source, processing time and downloading.

Posted by: AugustaJim | February 17, 2009 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Long-range model hugging again???

C'mon, CapWx guys. You're better than that.

Posted by: ThinkSpring | February 18, 2009 7:26 AM | Report abuse

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