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Posted at 5:00 AM ET, 04/18/2009

Forecast: Warm Sun Today, Cool Sunday Showers

By Jason Samenow

* A Chat with the Hurricane Center Director | Natcast: Spectacular *


Today: Mostly sunny. 75-79. | Tonight: Mostly clear, then increasing high clouds. 45-50. | Tomorrow: Increasing clouds, late day rain. 60-65. | A Look Ahead


Today's weather will be simply spectacular, but tomorrow it all starts unraveling. Temperatures drop 10-15 degrees, clouds increase, and rain moves in. The cool, damp pattern will persist at least into Monday. We may not experience sunshine and 70s again until late next week.

Today (Saturday): Could this be the warmest date of the month to date? I think so. Under mostly sunny skies, highs reach the mid-to-upper 70s (with a light breeze from the west). The previous high temperature for the month: 75 (eight days ago, on 4/10). Confidence: High

Tonight: Mostly clear skies for the first half of the evening, before some high clouds trickle in by morning. Lows will range from the low-to-mid 40s in the cooler suburbs to near 50 downtown. Confidence: Medium-High

Keep reading for the forecast into early next week...

Tomorrow (Sunday): A little morning sunshine isn't out of the question, but clouds will lower and thicken by mid-afternoon, with rain possible (50% chance) by late afternoon. Thanks to easterly flow off the cool ocean, highs will likely only reach the low 60s. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow Night: Occasional rain showers are likely (70% chance), with lows in the mid-40s. Confidence: Medium-High


Rain showers are likely again Monday and it will be a bit cool. With winds from the east persisting, highs should only reach the mid-50s or so given the rain and cloud cover. Intermittent rain showers will probably persist into Monday night, with lows in the upper 40s to around 50. Confidence: Medium

On Tuesday, a cold front will likely pass through the region early. That should bring about partial clearing and increasing breezes from the northwest. High temperatures should be in the low 60s. Confidence: Medium

By Jason Samenow  | April 18, 2009; 5:00 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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Next: NatCast: Late Inning Showers?


I've noticed an interesting pattern to our spring weather over the past few years. The weather tends to start out horribly, with cool temps and rain at the beginning of the week, and steadily build to the point where Friday and Saturday are great weather days. Then the next upper low rolls in and the cycle starts again.

I'm sure that this is coincidence- the weather can't possibly be directly correlated to the days of the week- but it is an interesting-and maddening-pattern. When will we break this cycle and just have nice weather?

Posted by: bkriner | April 18, 2009 7:43 AM | Report abuse


I've also noticed this pattern. We should break into consistently nice weather (warm, 70s) by early-to-mid May.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | April 18, 2009 8:57 AM | Report abuse

I think this year we could see tornadoes in parts of the country that do not normaly see them.

Posted by: eheadwest | April 18, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

I know May 10th is generally considered to be safely past the possibility of frost. Unfortunately, last week I got carried away and bought a flat of annuals. They are currently sitting in their pots in a sheltered location next to my house, but will be planted farther from the house. Would you be willing to hazard a guess as to how likely a frost would be in these next few weeks, and how much confidence would you have in such a guess?

Posted by: janedoe5 | April 18, 2009 12:54 PM | Report abuse

There are indications Monday's rain could be quite heavy, up to an inch and a half in some areas. That should be the rawest day of the week.

Janedoe5, do you live inside or outside the Beltway? If you're inside the Beltway, you're likely to be quite safe setting out the plants. It's likely to freeze at least once outside the Beltway, and the farther out you live, the more likely is the chance for a freeze or frost. Right now, I'm likely to trust in my condo management, as they turned off our furnaces for the season on Thursday.

Eheadwest, I may have to disagree with you. We're still in a La Nina, while tornadoes outside of "Tornado Alley" are more likely during El Nino periods. However there ought to be plenty of tornadoes this La Nina spring in "Tornado Alley" itself. We're already seeing quite a few in the area from Texas to Nebraska.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | April 18, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

One question re "Tornado Alley": Isn't it mighty impossible to contact the outside world via cell phone while you're down in the storm cellar???

Since most "Tornado Alley" storm cellars were dug prior to the cell phone era, I'd venture that it would be difficult to keep up contact with the outside world while in the storm cellar. Nowadays you need to lift up the door, go outside and dial "911" once the tornado has passed. Of course you also have to assume that the tornado didn't knock down your service provider's cell tower. Communications could still be knocked out after the storm.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | April 18, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

The weather today can be described with one word: GLORIOUS! What an absolutely beautiful day it was.

Posted by: david_in_stafford | April 18, 2009 6:43 PM | Report abuse

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