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Posted at 8:00 AM ET, 12/31/2009

Update: Steady precipitation moving away

By Jason Samenow

* A slippery, wintry end to year: Full Forecast | Get There *
* The latest storm news, traffic, and cancellation info *

As quickly as our wintry mix of precipitation arrived around 4 a.m. this morning, it's moving out. Most of the metro area received a brief coating of snow/sleet followed by freezing rain. However, north and west of a line from eastern Loudoun county in Va. and central Montgomery county in Md., 1-2 inches of snow accumulated.

Temperatures are hovering around freezing inside the beltway, with subfreezing temperatures holding on to the north and west -- where conditions are the worst. While most of the steady precipitation is over, spotty light precipitation may continue for the next couple of hours, especially south and east of town. Use caution walking/traveling, especially on untreated and elevated (bridges, overpasses, ramps) surfaces.

As the morning wears on, temperatures will gradually rise above freezing, so conditions will improve everywhere. See our full forecast for the outlook for the rest of the day, overnight and through the weekend.

*** Winter Weather Center ***
Closings/Delays | Traffic | Metro | Flights | Amtrak | OPM | Roads: DC/MD/VA
Radar: Latest regional radar shows move-
ment of precipitation over past three hours. Powered by HAMweather. Refresh page to update. Click here or on image to enlarge. Or see radar bigger on our Weather Wall.
Temperatures: Hover over and click icons for more info. Click and hold on map to pan. Powered by Weather Bonk. Map by Google. Refresh page to update. See map bigger on our Weather Wall.
View/Submit Photos | Ultimate Overview of Current Conditions: Weather Wall

How much snow and ice fell where you are? How are the roads? Let us know...

By Jason Samenow  | December 31, 2009; 8:00 AM ET
Categories:  Updates  
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Next: Top Weather Events of 2009: U.S. edition


2 inches in NW Montngomery. Main roads are wet. Side streets are snow covered.

Posted by: MKadyman | December 31, 2009 8:05 AM | Report abuse

1.1875" snow accumulation on Blue Ridge east of Front Royal

Currently 24.6F

Posted by: spgass1 | December 31, 2009 8:06 AM | Report abuse

CWG, this was obviously a wetter than average past three months, as well as December (and year I think). Was December also colder than average? It feels like we have been entrenched in winter for a month, when some years we have to wait till January for winter to really feel like winter.

Posted by: rocotten | December 31, 2009 8:19 AM | Report abuse

looks like a bigger deal for NYC and coastal NE than the "experts" were predicting, doesn't look like rain or a mix on the Jersey Turnpike webcams

still, the funny part of the accuweather hype is the way they throw around "raging", "bitter", and "blizzard" for Northern NE, an area which normally gets close to 100 inches a year - think they can handle getting 1/6th that amount in late Dec.

Posted by: TGT11 | December 31, 2009 8:21 AM | Report abuse


Yes, we are between 1.5 and 2 degrees below average this month.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 8:22 AM | Report abuse

1.5 inches in Gaithersburg, ground completely covered. Side streets are not plowed, though due to the relatively small amount of snow, if you proceed with slow speeds and caution, they are passable. Many roads haven't been plowed until you get to the major roads like Great Seneca Highway

Posted by: derrickd | December 31, 2009 8:34 AM | Report abuse

This was only a sleet and freezing rain event in Oakton, VA. Our roads are glazed. The snow / mix line must have been close to Dulles Airport. Did Dulles report any snow accumulation?

Posted by: Kevin-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 8:41 AM | Report abuse

1.5 to 2 inches in Germantown.

Posted by: ZF-MD | December 31, 2009 8:45 AM | Report abuse

2 inches of snow in Darnestown, light mix happening now. If the snow pack holds through tonight, this will make the weekend much colder around here.

Posted by: curtmccormick | December 31, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and now it seems to be snowing again -- just very, very tiny flakes.

Posted by: ZF-MD | December 31, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

About 1 inch of snow in Ashburn, plus a not so nice layer of ice underneath that.

Posted by: uconnflyer | December 31, 2009 8:58 AM | Report abuse

2" here in Laytonsville (MoCo). Just had some wet snow flurries move through. Main roads look ok, just a little slush.

Posted by: dprats21 | December 31, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

About an inch and a half on the car this morning in Columbia. Changed over to sleet just in time to pelt me in the face while I brushed it off.

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 9:25 AM | Report abuse

My sidestreet and driveway had a thin, even cover of white something-or-other two hours ago. It has become thinner now, and I will venture outside shortly.

Posted by: Murre | December 31, 2009 9:28 AM | Report abuse

Looks like we have an inch of snow in Herndon. Don't know how much ice is under that.

Posted by: RoseVA | December 31, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

**QUESTION** when you guys forecast,what redius around,or how far do your snowcasts reach from wash dc?? is dc the center of your forecast?? we here in madison va are south west of the city, 76 miles from of the wash dc,tv weather casts, would break it down in 4 sections,if i remember right. i liked there approach of breaking it down to local regions. the ony wash dc ch i get is fox 5. i just think the north and west of the city, and a line from wherever foracast, leaves room for tweaking. btw it was all freezing rain and a little sleet at first here,but its very icy here in madison va

Posted by: deveinmadisonva | December 31, 2009 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I live just a couple of miles from Vienna. We've got pretty much what he's got...a light coat of gritty ice from sleet/freezing rain. The surface temps don't seem to be rising as predicted.

There were also problems with the temperature forecast yesterday. Even with a southerly wind, we never got anywhere near the 38-40 predicted. The highest I saw was around 33-34....and that dropped quickly around sunset.

And it is odd to have cold-air damming like this with a southerly wind. Usually that comes from a cold high north or northeast of us, with a northeast wind, funnelling cold air down the east side of the mountains.

Posted by: MMCarhelp | December 31, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

about 1/4 inch of sleet/frozen rain accumulation out here. Small icicle action. It was 32 at 9:30, now it's 33, starting to see a bit of fog in our little valley ....

Posted by: weathergrrl | December 31, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

One inch south side of Rockville

Posted by: DOG3521 | December 31, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Just took the 4 year old to daycare. Our street is snow-covered but the main roads are mostly wet headed towards Gaithersburg. BUT - there are sudden, random pockets of icy, packed in snow. This to me is almost more dangerous than a consistent layer of snow on the roads. People get too bold. I just saw a Jeep do a 360 when it hit one of those. Be careful, ya'll!

Posted by: curtmccormick | December 31, 2009 10:11 AM | Report abuse

I just came home from work, Twinbrook to Gaithersburg. Rockville Pike, Shady Grove Rd. and the like are wet with slush between the lanes. Oddly, Midcounty Highway had a stretch with snow and deeper slush all across both lanes. Agree with curtmccormick that people are being a little too bold; I saw a few people sliding after sudden stops.

Posted by: RightField | December 31, 2009 10:17 AM | Report abuse

so how is it that the forecast wed morn from 24 hrs ago was right on the money??? and the later forecast looks like it was going to be all snow. due to the updated forecast wed eve, i was going to have to change my trip route to avoid the slick conditions down 29 in va. i'm just trying to make sense of all this flip flop forecasting. where is my snow? not one flake fell here. my trip should be great today to nc :)

Posted by: deveinmadisonva | December 31, 2009 10:19 AM | Report abuse


Temperatures should inch up past freezing north and west of town over the next few hours. Even with out northeast winds, weak systems such as this one often don't have the 'umph' to push out the cold air. As for yesterday, the thin layer of high clouds was enough to keep highs mostly in the low 30s.


The southwest extent of our main forecast area generally goes only as far as Fauquier and Stafford counties.

Posted by: Dan-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

No snow at all here in Manassas-had some ice coating but its starting to melt off.

Posted by: manassasmissy | December 31, 2009 10:22 AM | Report abuse

would like to know how the rain/snow line and timing got so badly mixed up - going to be an all snow event for much of the NJ shore, and the roads around NYC and LI look they have a few inches, also didn't think we'd be out of it so early based on forecasts

Posted by: TGT11 | December 31, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse


First, we predicted the onset of the precipitation was around 4 a.m. as we stated. We initially indicated the bulk of the precipitation would end mid-to-late morning, instead it ended in the early part of the mid-morning 8-9 a.m. -- so yes, it moved through a little more quickly than we thought.

Regarding precip type, we always were characterizing this as wintry mix event because the snow/ice line ran right through the region. The north and west suburbs got 1-2" of snow as we predicted. Our PM Update yesterday stated we wouldn't be surprised if there wasn't much snow accumulation in town. You have to realize it's extremely difficult to pinpoint exactly where the snow accumulation will stop and end when the line is over the immediate area. It is a very complex atmosphere in a complex region and tiny errors in either the models or the actual data can make a big difference in who gets what and where. Case in point, reports from Herndon indicate 1" of snow, but reports from Oakton indicate just ice. There was a very sharp gradient which no amount of technology or forecasting expertise could isolate. All along, we called for a minor wintry mix event which is what this was. We may have wavered a little bit on ice vs. snow but that's because it was such a fine line, which ground truth now validates.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

About 1.5 in my driveway in Ashburn just west of Dulles. Thin layer of sleet/ice below that made for treacherous shoveling. Was like shoveling on ice skates.

Ugh...good riddance to December and 2009. Both seemed cold and wet. Here's hoping for a better 2010.

Posted by: ThinkSpring | December 31, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

I took a walk a bit down our road and there is some ice underneath the snow... very slick. We are now above freezing at 35.6F though.

Posted by: spgass1 | December 31, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Quite a bit of ice on trees, etc. this morning is now melting as temperature rises to 35. Mainly cloudy (stratus, altostratus?) now.

Funny, but no one has responded to my earlier post re Kim Martucci's Jan. 2 departure from WUSA 9 or made any comments re same.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | December 31, 2009 12:38 PM | Report abuse

My report was from southeast Silver Spring. It was pretty much all sleet (maybe some freezing rain had mixed in), and I think it was about 1/2 inch on my car. I had no problems walking carefully to the car, and no problems getting to the main roads.

Posted by: Murre | December 31, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

funny my wife thinks she was scary looking and kinda gave her the creeps. we use to get ch 9,7,4 its been over a year or so her forecasts were great i thought.

Posted by: deveinmadisonva | December 31, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Appears to have just been freezing rain here in Lake Ridge, no fresh snow on the ground and there's a tiny glaze of ice on the tree branches.

Posted by: weatherdudeVA | December 31, 2009 1:08 PM | Report abuse

you guys do a great job, but i too have problems interpreting the forcasts - probably because you're predicting for such a large area.

to that end, i'd like to see more maps.

for instance when you say "north and west of the city", what does that mean for me in falls church? i'm a bit west, but not north, and inside the beltway. but ususally when you say "north and west" you mean ashburn or gaithersburg. you can't really even generally say "inside the beltway" because there can be a huge difference btwn say bethesda and morningside.

more maps!

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | December 31, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Is it me or has every storm so far this winter resulted in more snow than predicted. The first one, in early December, left 5 to 8 inches in parts of Montgomery. Then, of course, the big one two week ago ended up spitting out more snow than many thought. And there was even one night where everyone called for rain, but many areas started out as snow for several hours. And this morning -- its looks like Baltimore City ended up with 2 or 3 inches... Is this a sign that this winter is going to be really, really bad with perhaps a record year for snow??

Posted by: realclear | December 31, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

How are roads where you are? Is anyone still below freezing?
realclear: expect more cold, wintry weather through February!

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Have heard some conflicting reports on weather for the Winter Classic at Fenway tomorrow. What are they going to end up facing at game time?

Posted by: capsnumber1 | December 31, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

realclear, you said,
"...every storm so far this winter resulted in more snow than predicted."

love it! love the trend. so often it seems to go the other way - with storms "underperforming". gosh i hate that word.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | December 31, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse


Weather in Boston tomorrow is cloudy and breezy with a chance of scattered snow showers and flurries. Temps in the 30s.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse


When we say north and west -- we typically mean outside the beltway... weather inside in the beltway more closely approximates the District than it does, say, Gaithersburg or Oakton--which are truly north and west. We'll try to be more specific in the future.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Roads? Without a plow, snow slowly melting in spots as temps struggle to around 33. Those upper 30's aren't gonna happen today. Hope that 40 happens tomorrow or our complex in Ashburn will be a mess for days.

Posted by: ThinkSpring | December 31, 2009 3:18 PM | Report abuse


Our forecast for today called for highs in the mid-30s north and west.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | December 31, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

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