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Posted at 10:45 AM ET, 12/29/2009

Forecast: Wickedly windy and cold

By Matt Rogers

Still concerns for New Year holiday storminess

* Snow Lover's Crystal Ball | Follow us on Twitter *
* Outside now? Temps, winds & more: Weather Wall *

Today's Daily Digit
A somewhat subjective rating of the day's weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.
3Yesterday was a "4" and today is worse with more cold and more wind.
Get tomorrow's 'Digit' on Twitter tonight


Today: Mostly sunny, windy. 32-36. | Tonight: Clearing skies with colder temperatures. 17-23. | Tomorrow: Sunny early, then increasing clouds. 32-38. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail


The key for today is wind chill. The combination of strong wind gusts and daytime highs well below normal means it will actually feel like the 20s or colder. So bundle up when you venture out and about. Winds should settle tomorrow and then we'll be prepping for our mixed precipitation situation on New Year's Eve into New Year's Day. Right now, the approaching system appears disheveled so heavy precipitation is not expected, but confidence is still low.

Temperatures: Current area temperatures. Powered by Weather Bonk. Map by Google. Hover over and click icons for more info. Click and hold on map to pan. Refresh page to update. See map bigger on our Weather Wall.

Today (Tuesday): Mostly sunny, windy and cold with highs in the low-to-mid 30s and wind chills in the 20s or even teens at times. Winds will be strong from the west and north (as high as 20 to 30 mph with gusts up to 50). Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Mostly clear skies are expected as those pesky winds fade to the only slightly breezy 5 to 10 mph range. Look for lows in the upper teens to low 20s. Confidence: Medium-High

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

Tomorrow (Wednesday): Clouds are expected to build in on Wednesday, but some sun is also possible, especially early. This will do little for temperatures, which will continue to top out only in the mid-30s or so throughout the area. But without the wind, it will feel much better. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow Night: Cloudy skies are expected as the next storm system approaches. There is a 30% chance of light snow toward morning. Confidence: Low-Medium


New Year's Eve Thursday will be under the influence of a disorganized weather system. What that means is the potential (40% chance) for morning rain and snow showers with a 50/50 chance of afternoon/evening rain showers. Highs should range from the mid-30s to near 40. By nightfall and especially by the time the clock strikes twelve, we could be seeing any rain change back to snow with light accumulations even possible by morning. Confidence: Low

New Year's Day Friday is the first day of our new decade and it is currently offering blustery and cold conditions with scattered snow showers, especially in the morning. Highs should be in the 30s. Winds pick up once more by afternoon and evening as low pressure strengthens off the Northeast coast. Confidence: Low-Medium

The weekend looks cold and windy right now with highs mainly in the 30s and lows in the 20s with some teens in the far western/northern suburbs. At least the weather will be mostly dry (outside a random snow flurry or two) even though those pesky wind chills will be back again. Confidence: Low-Medium

By Matt Rogers  | December 29, 2009; 10:45 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Light snow and a mix may usher in New Year
Next: 2009 saw erosion of clarity on climate


How about that wind overnight? Woke me up several times. Anyone see any snow flurries overnight or early this morning? It looks like a few have popped up on radar, mainly north of town.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | December 29, 2009 7:39 AM | Report abuse

Holy awful. Outside of tornado warning red on the CWA map, there is nothing that I hate more than Wind Advisory/Warning brown...No flurries in SE LoCo, but gawd was that some wind. 30 degrees at 6am.

Posted by: DullesARC | December 29, 2009 7:54 AM | Report abuse

hi guys,
see my new sculpture at
(chickenlady already found it on her own!)

the eskimo word for this kind of "snow" translates roughly as "icy chunky junk". it was rock salt sized ice granules mixed with gravel sized ice rocks....not the best raw material...

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | December 29, 2009 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Love that 50/500 chance.

Posted by: Hemisphire | December 29, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Well, Friday marks the start of the last year of this decade, rather than the start of the next. There was no year "0" zero, so 1-10 = one decade. Cheers, and Happy New Year!

Posted by: mouseandhung | December 29, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Great pix and wonderful sculptures!

Posted by: weathergrrl | December 29, 2009 11:55 AM | Report abuse

To mouseandhung:
Friday marks the beginning of the 2010-2019 decade. You are correct that it doesn't mark the beginning of the 202st decade since the incorrect birth date of some people's lord.

However, everybody knows that 1/1/1990 was the first day of "the nineties". It just wasn't the first day of the 200th decade since the incorrect birth date of some people's lord.

So everybody enjoy the new decade on Friday and have a Happy New Year.

Posted by: bflorhodes | December 29, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for catching that 50/500 error there, sorry about that. Also, I wondered if the decade comment would ignite that debate. I tend to side with the idea that the 2010s are starting. Happy New Year!

Posted by: MattRogers | December 29, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

This cold wind is REALLY NASTY!!!...and unfortunately the cold doesn't hang around enough to avoid a nasty rain event for the New Year.

We don't seem to be getting a lot of flurries...last winter we got no snow until March, but got lots of pesky flurries and snow squalls with little if any accumulation. This year, we've gotten the one huge blizzard, but no flurries...wonder what's going on.

Models and model ensembles appear to be "bombing out" the next storm off Cape May rather than Cape Hatteras...not good for big snow accumulation here. It promises another nasty wind-chill event this weekend.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | December 29, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

I was just knocked over by a gust of wind in Alexandria. Literally. Like I was walking, then - WHOOSH! - I wasn't. Luckily, my dignity remained intact, as there were no witnesses. I'm sure the look of surprise on my face was priceless. Apparently, wind advisories aren't just for boating or flying (the only time I pay 'em any mind).

Posted by: Snowlover2 | December 29, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Guys, you are great with our local weather. You do a great job. Don't embarass yourselves by trying to take a global perspective here on this website.

I'm not a climate scientist, but I can report what I observe:
-Scientists in the 1970s utterly convinced earth would freeze in short order...and now sure that it will warm up.
-Predictions of tropical storms being more powerful and more frequent. Yet some very quiet years these past few.
-Scientists doing what they do best- following the funding of what is en vogue.
-Hypocrite celebrity personalities jetting around the world admonishing the rest of us how much energy we use.

By all means, a studied and spirited debate is warranted as it is for all scientific questions. Ooops, I called it into question. Which probably makes me a heretic.

But until somebody can zero in on whether our weather is changing on a 5 billion year old planet, and if there's actually something we can do, and CHINA will sign up for a solution...the whole situation is really appearing to be a good backstory for the rich to make themselves richer once again.

I can see it. Hospitality suites, cocktail receptions, banquets, little workshops where they discuss how bad we all are. Who WOULDN'T love a free trip to Copenhagen to ride in a limo and eat great food and talk about all the "other" people on Earth need to get their act together?

Posted by: notindc1 | December 29, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

sorry, i meant to post my comment in the climate change article. my bad!

Posted by: notindc1 | December 29, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

I agree with those who say that a decade is from the 0 year until the 9 year. 2000-2009 was one decade, 2010-2019 is another decade, and so on (even if a Year 0 wasn't recognized).

Oh, and it's freakin' cold. It's 29 here even through the bright sun. I think our heat stopped working, or something happened to it. We have it set at 72 and it's in the mid-60s in my room, near 70 in the living room and in the low-60s in the master bedroom.

Posted by: weatherdudeVA | December 29, 2009 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Wow, interested to see all of the decade talk. It was a bigger deal, I think, when the argument was over the start of the 21st century, which I would say was NINE years ago, making it 2001-2100. There is no "21" in 2000-2099. But since a decade CAN be any 10-year period, you can have your decade and I'll have mine.

Posted by: ValleyCaps | December 29, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Another plain-English weather explanation. Thank you. My kids want to go out but I am waiting for a not-so-cold-feeling day. Wednesday may be the best chance this week.

Posted by: BaracksTeleprompter | December 29, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Wow. I feel for you folks. I'm in Luquillo, Puerto Rico right now and the temp is in the '70's, listening to the whoosh-whoosh-whoosh of the waves just outside our apartment. We were down on the beach all day playing in the warm Atlantic Ocean. In fact, I'm hoping the wife will put some cream on my poor sun-burned back. Body surfing in December! Whodathunk it possible?

Tomorrow, we're taking the ferry from Fajardo over to Culebra to frolick on the white sand beach and crystal blue Carribean Sea waters on Playa Flamenco. I'm hoping that I can get a tropical fruit drink with a little umbrella to drink on the beach.

Okay. 'nuff said. It sucks to be all of you in the DC metro area. And it will suck to be me when I return to DC on Saturday night. Sigh. If only I didn't have to go to work. I suppose I'm just going to have to work harder at winning that damn lottery.

Until then, I'm going to get as much sun, surf and sand as I possibly can. That, and set naked on my patio with a beautiful view of the ocean...

Posted by: JoStalin | December 29, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Those snow sculptures are freakin' awesome! Way to go, Walter!

Posted by: BadMommy1 | December 29, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

"New Year's Day Friday is the first day of our new decade..."


Mmmm... nooo... it's the first day of the last year of the same decade.

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | December 29, 2009 10:53 PM | Report abuse

Some interesting links below, relating to time systems. . . Merry New Year!

Posted by: mouseandhung | December 30, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

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