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Posted at 8:20 AM ET, 09/24/2009

Forecast: Sticky 80s Today, Stellar 70s Tomorrow

By Josh Larson

Saturday brings the likelihood of rain

* NatCast | UnitedCast | Lackluster Hurricane Season Continues *
* Later: Dry Period Linked to Lack of Hurricane Activity? *


Today: Mostly cloudy, warm & humid. Slight shower chance. Mid-80s. | Tonight: Mostly cloudy. Low 60s. | Tomorrow: Partly sunny & cooler. 72-76. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail


Early fall weather in our region can often produce rather changeable conditions, and the coming few days will exhibit just that. The word "unsettled" comes to mind, as we go from warm (to almost hot) and mostly cloudy today, to noticeably cooler conditions with ample sunshine on Friday, to what may turn out to be a pretty rainy Saturday...and then probably back to sunshine late Sunday into Monday.

Radar: Latest regional radar loop shows movement of precipitation over past two hours. Powered by HAMweather. Refresh page to update. Click here or on image to enlarge. Or see radar bigger on our Weather Wall.

Today (Thursday): Conditions today will closely mimic those we experienced yesterday. That means mostly cloudy skies (though with some filtered rays of sunshine at times), a stray shower or thundershower (most spots will remain dry) mainly before 3 p.m. - and continued warm afternoon highs well into the mid-80s. High humidity this morning will slowly diminish by evening. Confidence: High

Tonight: Mostly cloudy skies will linger during the evening hours tonight though some partial clearing is possible as we head through the night. Overnight lows will range from 60-65. Confidence: Medium-High

Keep reading to see what our weekend has in store...

Tomorrow (Friday): Friday's forecast calls for both noticeably cooler temperatures and more in the way of sunshine than today. A more northerly flow of air will hold afternoon highs to the low-to-mid 70s despite partly sunny skies. A front stalled out to our south will remain close enough that heavy cloud cover and showers may not be too far away -- so the day falls short of the criteria for the "Nice Day Sun"... Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow Night: Plan on a partly cloudy and dry evening Friday night, with a light easterly breeze from time to time. Clouds may quickly thicken towards morning. Overnight lows will range from 50-55 (downtown). Confidence: Medium-High


I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news for Saturday, but a well-organized storm system approaching from the west is likely to bring overcast skies along with an increasing chance of showers (and even periods of steadier, heavier rain) as the day wears on. Afternoon highs likely won't make it out of the upper 60s. Saturday night may be rather rainy, so any outdoor evening activities are in jeopardy. Overnight lows drop to the upper 50s to low 60s. Confidence: Medium

It's possible that Sunday could be salvageable, but that's highly dependent on how quickly the aforementioned storm system pushes through. I think the first half of the day will feature more clouds than sun along with a 20% chance of a lingering shower. But I'm expecting at least partly sunny skies and dry conditions by the afternoon hours. Fingers crossed? Afternoon highs should be in the 70s. Confidence: Low-Medium

High pressure passes through the region on back-to-work Monday, allowing for considerable sunshine and dry conditions for a good part of the day. Temperatures should begin to creep back up, too, perhaps to near 80 for highs. By evening, though, a cold front may increase clouds and produce a shower or two. Overnight, it will probably become breezy and cooler, with lows in the 50s. Confidence: Medium

By Josh Larson  | September 24, 2009; 8:20 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: NatCast: A Summery Evening
Next: D.C. Rain Linked to Intensity of Hurricane Season?


Curious about what you say about Saturday versus the 40% on the chart. Seems it should be higher than that.

Posted by: jaybird926 | September 24, 2009 6:35 AM | Report abuse


There is some guidance that suggests a lot of the rain may hold off until Saturday night. We're not buying that at the moment, and are leaning towards a Saturday day time start. We'll try to better pin down the timing details tomorrow...

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | September 24, 2009 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Any chance the rain misses us all together or arrives earlier on Sat. I am really hoping for a dry Sunday morning!

Posted by: snowlover | September 24, 2009 8:39 AM | Report abuse


We think there's a pretty good chance the rain will end Saturday night, but are keeping a 20-30% chance of lingering showers in the forecast for Sunday morning.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | September 24, 2009 9:05 AM | Report abuse

What time tomorrow are we expecting the front, and what are the chances it'll kick off some thunderstorms?

Posted by: wiredog | September 24, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse


Also, just to clarify, the 6-day chart is an overview forecast pulled in from the National Weather Service. The more detailed narrative text is us (CWG).


Also, note that even if the rain does end Saturday night, the ground and grass may still be quite damp Sunday morning.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | September 24, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Any chance the rain will have moved out of SW VA by 3:30pm on Saturday? I have tix to the VT/Miami game and I have a feeling I'm going to get wet.

Posted by: ana_b | September 24, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Do you have any suggestions for home weather stations? Consumer reviews of virtually all brands out there seem to say they fail rather quickly, usually just after their warranties expire.

Posted by: lhaller | September 24, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

ana_b, I think it's possible -- but, unfortunately, unlikely -- that rain will have exited by mid-afternoon Saturday...

Posted by: Josh-CapitalWeatherGang | September 24, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Josh, I'll dig out the poncho and get mentally prepared for sloppy game :-)

Posted by: ana_b | September 24, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

sooo humid :( ughh

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | September 24, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Saturday...haven't seen much about any wind risk, but there seems to be a reduced risk of thunderstorm activity. Next week could be considerably cooler than what we have been seeing lately. Low temps in the fifties and a few forties well outside the Beltway could occur about midweek. Frost seems unlikely except possibly in a few favored Blue Ridge locations.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | September 24, 2009 6:53 PM | Report abuse

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