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Posted at 5:00 AM ET, 09/ 9/2009

Forecast: Overcast, Cool & Damp Through Friday

By Josh Larson

First totally dry day may not arrive 'til Saturday

* NatCast | UnitedCast | Hurricane Tracking Center *
* 10 Things Weather Gang Forecasters Will Tell You *
* Freedman: Response to Climate Depot Distortions -- New Comments *


Today: Overcast; spotty showers. 72-77. | Tonight: Overcast with showers. Low 60s. | Tomorrow: Cloudy, cool and showery. Upper 60s. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail


A slow-moving, pesky area of low pressure spinning off the mid-Atlantic will bring thick overcast skies, periods of showers (and, at times heavier rain), and considerably cooler-than-normal temperatures all the way through Friday. During this time some areas may receive upwards of 1" of rain, with the highest amounts likely to be east of immediate metro area. With any luck, high pressure will arrive right in time to bring sunny, dry weather to us this coming weekend. Until then, keep the rain gear handy.

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 (Wednesday): Chances are that conditions today will rather closely mimic those we experienced yesterday. That means overcast skies and a 50/50 shot at periods of drizzle or light rain, especially over the eastern suburbs. It will be breezy too, with a onshore northeasterly wind of 10-15 mph. Highs will primarily be in the mid-70s. Confidence: Medium

Tonight: We'll hold onto overcast skies tonight, with a 60% chance of continued periods of drizzle or light rain; once again, the best chance for precipitation remains to the east of DC. Overnight lows will settle in the low 60s. Confidence: Medium

Keep reading for the continued damp forecast...

Tomorrow (Thursday): Thursday may end up being the wettest day of the week. We continue with overcast skies, and rain should be somewhat more widespread today (60% chance). Winds from the north at 10-15mph will make it difficult for afternoon highs to push above 70. If you happen to like damp, dreary weather, you'll feel right at home. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow Night: Skies remain overcast Thursday night, with a 50/50 chance of showers, especially during the evening (as opposed to overnight) hours. Overnight lows will drop to the low 60s for most areas. Confidence: Medium


Friday's forecast is a bit of a crap shoot at this point, depending on how quickly the remnants of our coastal low push away from the area. I think the day will feature mostly cloudy (as opposed to completely overcast) skies, with a 30% chance of scattered showers, especially during the first half of the day. Somewhat brighter afternoon skies may push afternoon highs into the upper 70s. Mostly cloudy skies Friday night with just the slightest chance of a few stray showers and overnight lows primarily in the mid-60s. Confidence: Low-Medium

Though I can't say with quite as much confidence as I'd like to, it appears that high pressure building over the region on Saturday will act to bring about the first totally dry for most spots since last weekend! We should see at least partly (and perhaps even mostly) sunny skies, with afternoon highs finally returning to "normal" readings in the low 80s. Overnight lows will be in the mid-60s. Confidence: Medium

The outlook for Sunday is for mostly sunny skies with afternoon highs once again in the low 80s and overnight lows in the 60s. Confidence: Medium

By Josh Larson  | September 9, 2009; 5:00 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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Is this pesky low the remnants of Erika from last week?

Posted by: ironmanjt | September 9, 2009 7:19 AM | Report abuse

ironmanjt, aforementioned "pesky" low -- :) -- is not the remnants of Erika from last week, but a subsequent semi-tropical area of low pressure (which happened to interact with a stalled out front) that formed in her wake

Posted by: Josh-CapitalWeatherGang | September 9, 2009 7:51 AM | Report abuse

So, we basically skipped September?

Not liking this weather at all.

Posted by: ThinkSpring | September 9, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Yikes, tomorrow sounds REALLY nasty...such weather ought to be BANNED..."much-needed" or not.

Here's hoping the D.C. SPLIT gives us a MUCH-NEEDED REPRIEVE!!!

Posted by: Bombo47jea | September 9, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Bombo, you may just be in luck. The latest computer modeling has shifted the precipitation field for tomorrow increasingly east (away) from the metro area. My best guess now is that there will be a very tight gradient to precipitation amounts (from NW to SE) where -- conceivably -- places on the Eastern Shore of Maryland may see 3-4" while downtown DC may see less than an 1" and places further (south-)west even less...

Posted by: Josh-CapitalWeatherGang | September 9, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Good news, Josh.

More info: Just finished watching Tom Skillng on WGN. Easterly flow is very prominent and Atlantic moisture is traveling as far west as Chicago and beyond with this pattern. This is rare.

In addition Hurricane Fred is far to the east near Cape Verde, with strength of Category 2 to 3. Everyone is saying this will be a fish storm, but it looks as though this could be one of the rare hurricanes that could threaten the Azores. Last time this happened about ten years ago, the remnants hit western Spain and Portugal with tropical storm force winds.
Hurricanes and tropical storms are about as rare in the Azores as in Hawaii.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | September 9, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Strong sun and considerable blue through that "overcast" here in MoCo.

Posted by: CapitalClimate | September 9, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

A strong blocking high to the north [why can't we ever get these in the winter?!] will do that -- in terms of a strong easterly flow pushing moisture, at least at some levels of the atmosphere, as far west as the Midwest.

P.S. Tom Skilling is a great meteorologist/guy; I covered him, et al, in a Weatherwise article a couple years back: (PDF file)

Posted by: Josh-CapitalWeatherGang | September 9, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

CapitalClimate, consider yourself lucky, then, Steve...

Posted by: Josh-CapitalWeatherGang | September 9, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Less than 2/10 scattered cloud coverage and bright sun only a couple of miles from the Beltway looks a lot more like a bust than luck.
Oh, sorry, forgot that Comments are reserved for Gangstas patting themselves and each other on the back.

Posted by: CapitalClimate | September 9, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

4 pm sky cover reports
Ft. Belvoir
Ft. Meade
Few clouds:
College Park

Posted by: CapitalClimate | September 9, 2009 4:05 PM | Report abuse

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