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Posted at 8:50 AM ET, 07/29/2009

Forecast: Shower, Storm Chances Higher Today

By Dan Stillman

Temperatures briefly dip, heat up again tomorrow

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Today: Mostly cloudy. Very humid. Periods of showers and storms. Low-to-mid 80s. | Tonight: Decreasing rain chances. Low 70s. | Tomorrow: Partly sunny. Isolated p.m. shower/storm? Low 90s. | A Look Ahead


By now you may have heard -- hot (or at least quite warm) and humid weather is here to stay, at least through the weekend. Psychologically, I think I can handle this, knowing how non-summery so much of the summer was until recently. Physically, though, I may be singing a different tune if this soupy stuff lasts straight through August. At least today's clouds and rain chances mean a break from the "hot" part of "hot and humid."

Today (Wednesday): A very humid day, but mostly cloudy skies keep temperatures cooler than yesterday -- in the low-to-mid 80s for highs. A few rounds of showers and thunderstorms are likely during the late morning into evening. While a few storms may be capable of damaging winds and hail, I think the lack of sun will generally limit the severe threat. With so much moisture in the air, however, there's the potential for pockets of heavy downpours. Confidence: Medium

Probability: 60-70%
Coverage: Scattered-Widespread

Tonight: Shower and thunderstorm chances diminish as the evening progresses, then nothing more than an isolated shower after midnight. It's a mostly cloudy and muggy night with lows in the low 70s. Confidence: Medium

Keep reading for the forecast through the weekend....

Tomorrow (Thursday): The heat makes a nice comeback tomorrow with partly sunny skies, highs in the low 90s, and afternoon heat indices into the mid-90s thanks to continued high humidity. The afternoon and evening could bring a few isolated showers and thunderstorms -- about a 20-30% chance for any given location. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow Night: After the chance of a few spots seeing an evening shower or thunderstorm, we're partly to mostly cloudy and once again sticky with lows in the low-to-mid 70s. Confidence: Medium


Highs have a good chance at reaching the low 90s again on Friday as high humidity refuses to budge. Partly sunny skies could give way to a few periods of showers and thunderstorms during the afternoon into Friday night. And preliminary indications are that some storms could be strong to severe. Confidence: Medium

We stay warm and humid over the weekend with highs in the upper 80s to low 90s and more chances for showers and storms. Confidence: Low-Medium

By Dan Stillman  | July 29, 2009; 8:50 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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It looks like most of the precip is moving along west of the mountains for now...when is this expected to change?

Posted by: manassasmissy | July 29, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Sure does, looks like the heavy stuff is passing us by, at least for now.

Posted by: zim94 | July 29, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

So no rain then today again?

Posted by: hereandnow1 | July 29, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

@zim94 and @manassasmissy
Yep, heaviest rain totals with this system are going to be well to the north and west. Models have been fairly consistent in showing this.

Nothing's really changed from the forecast above. Still expecting a few rounds of showers (possible t-storms in the mix) through evening, with the potential for some pockets of heavy rain. But except for maybe some isolated locations, I don't think you're going to see impressive rain totals in the immediate metro area.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | July 29, 2009 12:06 PM | Report abuse

I'm wondering how we can get the predicted severe weather with all this cloudiness...I think we can still get some rain this afternoon, but more likely as light to moderate showers or longer rainy periods, not as severe thunderstorms. Hard to tell here if there's anything in the upper air to trigger a severe outbreak, but I regard it as rather unlikely without a clearing episode.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | July 29, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Typical...comes from the southwest only to blow up over Pennsylvania. What is it about Pennsylvania? Weather patterns seem to really change up there, but it seems like they have just as many mountains running up the middle of the state as our Blue Ridge. Here our mountains seem to really affect storms, while up there the effect seems to be much less.

Posted by: rocotten | July 29, 2009 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Bombo, I tend to agree. I think the severe threat is right now on and east of DC/Balt line (i95ish) ... more sun etc east.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | July 29, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Just damn hard to get any decent rain this time of the year. Weather Channel had today at 80% now it's looking like another bust...

Posted by: LoudounGeek | July 29, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Percentages such as the one you're referring to the chance of measurable rain (even a tiny amount). That's already verified in parts of the area.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | July 29, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

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