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Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 01/29/2010

Forecast: Snow on the way, but may not be much

By Camden Walker

Metro area amounts likely on the lower end; more south

* Latest accumulation map | Ann & Antarctica: How's the air? *
* Winter Weather Advisory tomorrow for far southern suburbs (map) *
* Outside now? Temps, clouds & more: Weather Wall *

Today's Daily Digit
 
A somewhat subjective rating of the day's weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.
 
3A struggle to reach freezing and frigid wind chills. So long to yesterday's 50s.
 
Get tomorrow's 'Digit' on Twitter tonight

EXPRESS FORECAST

Today: Mostly cloudy, breezy and cold. Near 30. | Tonight: Chance of flurries or light snow late. Near 20. | Tomorrow: Chance of light snow. 20s. | Sunday: Clearing skies. Low-to-mid 30s. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail

FORECAST IN DETAIL

We topped 50 yesterday, but now that an arctic cold front has moved through we're back in the freeze. That sets the stage for the possibility of snow late tonight and tomorrow courtesy a low-pressure center that will move by well to the south. Doesn't look like a big storm for the immediate metro area, but even the slightest shift in the storm track could mean the difference between no snow and several inches. Meanwhile, areas well south of D.C. are looking at a moderate to major snowstorm. After a very cold weekend, temperatures make a decent recovery early next week.

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 (Friday): We'll definitely feel chilly with mostly cloudy skies, highs only near 30 and a moderate breeze from the north/northwest around 10-15 mph (with higher gusts in the morning). Wind chills will be hard-pressed to get out of the teens. Winter is back with a vengeance! Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Skies become overcast and there's a chance of flurries or light snow overnight or toward morning, especially for the southern suburbs. The clouds will be the only thing saving us from a truly bone-chilling night as lows settle near 20. Confidence: Medium

Keep reading for more on the weekend snow potential and the forecast into next week...

Tomorrow (Saturday): An east-west line separating just flurries (or no snow at all) to the north, and a period or periods of light snow to the south, is likely to set up somewhere near the D.C. area. We still don't know exactly where that line will be. But even those in the metro area who get the period or periods of light snow probably won't see more than a few inches. Everyone will be very cold with highs only in the 20s.

Generally speaking, places even with around the northern branch of the Beltway and southward have the best chance of seeing an inch or more, with lesser amounts toward points north. See our latest accumulation map and probabilities for how we see the storm playing out as of now.

Tomorrow Night: Any snow should taper during the evening. Bundle up, however, as occasional breezes will send evening wind chills into the teens, and into the single digits at times overnight. Actual air temperatures dip to lows in the teens area-wide. Confidence: Medium

Sunday: Skies will continue to clear as temperatures remain chilly with highs in the low-to-mid 30s. Road crews should find the increasing sun helpful to clearing any snow-covered roads. Confidence: Medium-High

A LOOK AHEAD

Conditions remain fair, but cold, on Sunday night with lows in the teens and low 20s. Confidence: Medium-High

Partly to mostly sunny skies should accompany moderating temperatures on Monday as highs head for the low 40s. Confidence: Medium

Could see increasing clouds Tuesday with the possibility of light wintry precipitation. We'll update you again soon on what looks to be a minor wintry threat at most. Temperatures stay on the cold side, regardless of precipitation, in the upper 30s to low 40s. Confidence: Low

By Camden Walker  | January 29, 2010; 11:30 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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Next: Slight shift north with snow accumulations

Comments

Gggrrrrr.....Is there any chance this thing might still slide north a wee bit?? I know, I know, wishcasting again. I've been watching the updates all week and felt this storm's potential slipping through my hands like sands through the hourglass.

Posted by: curlygirl2 | January 29, 2010 8:23 AM | Report abuse

What a difference 150 miles makes! CWG – what would it take for the trajectory of the storm to stay northward instead of taking a right turn out to sea, or even better, intensify off the coast and head north? Please tell me something that will keep my snow hopes alive :)

Posted by: snowlover | January 29, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

aaaarrrrggghhhh! @@%^^@#$#$@!@!!#$^#^!%^*(%*!$$^&*

sorry for that outburst... i feel winter slipping away... january was a total bust, snow-wise...

throw me a bone, please. weren't you model-watchers talking about a string of precip events coming through here next week? all i see is that stupid macaroni noodle on tuesday, and temps going back up into the 40s...

@$%*($!#%!#^*((&@!#!!~!@*()*#

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 29, 2010 8:28 AM | Report abuse

like you guys said...:( made of snow disappointment.

Posted by: manassasmissy | January 29, 2010 8:45 AM | Report abuse

NWS Saturday forecast for Northern Montgomery County: "Chance of precipitation is 40%. Little or no snow accumulation expected"

Bummmmmmer. Well, at this point I have decided to be happy not to have to shovel snow. My hope is that we actually get some flurries up here to break up the landscape's dead brown look and to justify these cold temps.

Good luck to all of you south of town, and please send some reports when the white stuff starts flying. Jealous, but happy for you.

Oh, and Walter: There's still a slight chance, right?? Lol.

Posted by: dprats21 | January 29, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

dprats21 wrote:
Good luck to all of you south of town, and please send some reports when the white stuff starts flying. Jealous, but happy for you.

-------------------------------------------

Will do :)

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | January 29, 2010 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Keeping my fingers cross that this snow storm is a bust too much to do tomorrow to stay in and watch it snow...bring back the 50 degree temperatures soon!!

Posted by: markfd | January 29, 2010 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Hilarious. This is winter in DC guys! Actually, this isn't really typical winter in DC, as temperatures are much below normal, and forecast to be for several days to come. Overall, actually, this has been anything but a typical DC winter, with multiple bouts of severe cold and a huge historic snowstorm. Perspective, people! :) And besides, what good is a snowstorm on Saturday??? We need one on a Wednesday!

Posted by: SouthsideFFX | January 29, 2010 9:08 AM | Report abuse

So....planned trip down to Charlottesville on Saturday - moronic?

Posted by: TheTim | January 29, 2010 9:22 AM | Report abuse

@TheTim

Um, yeah, kind of :)

Posted by: Dan-CapitalWeatherGang | January 29, 2010 9:28 AM | Report abuse

SouthsideFFX: You are absolutely correct. I will take full responsibility for being unrealistic. We were spoiled by December, and now we are weeping over a near miss on a weekend. It's funny that even though I know what DC winters are like, I (or, more accurately, the kid in me) always hopes for them to over perform on snow. It's completely counter-intuitive because I know if it does snow a lot, I will be out shoveling my and my elderly neighbors' driveways, resulting in back pain. Yet, I still root for snow?? I need to see someone about this.

Posted by: dprats21 | January 29, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Maybe February will bring snow??

Posted by: nolagirl67 | January 29, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

@Dan-CapitalWeatherGang

That's what I was afraid of. I suppose I'll see how dumb I'm feeling tomorrow morning!

Posted by: TheTim | January 29, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Can you give us wishcasters north of the city (Rockville) any hope of the storm sliding north?

When will you have the latest models today? I will be refreshing quite a bit...

Posted by: NattyBo1985 | January 29, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

How about a planned trip to Charlottesville today, leaving tomorrow? Should I plan on returning in the morning-noonish time frame?

Posted by: lawhiteh | January 29, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

SouthsideFFX:

I don't know about that. Yes we had a historic storm - but if a combination of conditions that was supposed to make this winter "highly favorable for cold and snow" produces a "one hit wonder" and nothing else, my feelings about this area's long term snowfall potential will continue to decline.

We've had nothing in astronomical winter (all our snow was basically in astronomical fall). Bottom line, to me, is Atlanta can get a one hit wonder. So can Charlotte, or even Columbia. The DC area is by no means a winter heaven, but in years past, we could reasonably anticipate *several* snow events. If we have "historically good" winter conditions, and still only generate 1-2 events over 2", I think our average snowfall will continue to plummet year after year, regardless of the "Blizzard of 09." One storm is a fluke, not a good winter.

Posted by: jahutch | January 29, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

I know this is silly...but, I wish this storm would veer northward.

Posted by: celestun100 | January 29, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

I'm a newbie here, and I love reading your comments. I'm about 30 mi south of D.C., so I'm hoping that's far enough to boost our accumulations down here. Then again I'm 30 mi north of Fredericksburg--they have a winter storm watch posted, and we have nuttin'. This one will be interesting!

Posted by: teezee210 | January 29, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

I live in Crozet and looking at the models it seems to me for our area a jog in the storm 50 miles one way or the other could have a huge impact. A little north we get a foot...a little south we get a dusting. Am reading these right?

Posted by: crozet | January 29, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

The 12z GFS model just slid quite a bit North.

Posted by: kallieh | January 29, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

.. but then again, they did that during the day yesterday too and then went back South. So it may not mean anything.

Posted by: kallieh | January 29, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

dprats21,
re "there's a chance"...

indeed. think about it: how many times have we been promised 5" or whatever and had the storm veer north and give us less? (actually, maybe it's just the rain/snow line that veers north and gives us snow-melting rain...oh how i hate the expression "changing to rain"....)

anyway, they've been off with the reports from 18 hrs out before... maybe they're wrong (and in a good, northward-veering kind of way) now. so, yes! there's a chance!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KX5jNnDMfxA

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 29, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Hooray!

The 12z GFS brings more precip futher north!

Comment from Ruggie at the Ruggie Weather Forum:

"Ummm, Might want to keep an eye on this storm. Sure seems more north to me and seems everthing is moving more NE with this storm."

Here is the link:

http://ruggieweather.phpbb3now.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=375&st=0&sk=t&sd=a&start=15

Posted by: Yellowboy | January 29, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Walter-in-fallschurch: LOL! THANKS for the link. That scene has been going through my head since yesterday. I think I'll have to watch the movie again tonight.

Latest model runs look better for snow in the northern metro area. I've been watching the discussion over on the EasterUSWx board, and there is much more hope now than this morning. Still skeptical, but maybe not as delusional as I thought I was this morning.

http://www.easternuswx.com/bb/index.php?showtopic=221446&st=0

Posted by: dprats21 | January 29, 2010 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Regarding travel tomorrow, I would not travel south of I-66 after 9am. Travel around & north of the Beltway may be "ok" until noon. Drive CAREFULLY and STAY OFF THE ROAD FOR EMERGENCY VEHICLES' sake tomorrow afternoon!

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | January 29, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Ohhh, the accumulation map is creeping northward. We (SO MD) are now in the 4"-8" range.

Looks like tomorrow night will be a neighborhood get-together for "game night."

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | January 29, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

"One-hit wonders"???

Par for the course in most El Nino years which tend to be milder than normal. Please remember 1982/83, one of our mildest years except for the single HUGE February snowstorm. And also, please remember the infamous strong 1997/98 El Nino winter which was Washington's No-hit Wonder, with plenty of the breezy rainstorms a few folks here like so much, but scarcely a tenth inch of snow all season. This year, we're lucky to have a negative Arctic Oscillation with its attendant Greenland block. I'm expecting a rather large winter event during the usual Presidents' Day winter weather watch period next month.

Please remember I've got a big dance tonight. The snow can hold off until I'm nicely back home aoa midnight tonight--if it gets up this far to begin with. Model runs have a tendency to drift northward as an event approaches this region, so I'm not too worried. One or two inches of powder is fine.

We've got a month of meteorological winter to go, and ThinkSpring is already restless...but I'm not ready to jump on ThinkSpring's bandwagon until DST goes into effect in March. Nonetheless ThinkSpring will probably be all over this site come Ground Hog Day desperately hoping for "no shadow" in Punxsatawney--you can bet on it!!!

Posted by: Bombo47jea | January 29, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

I just got home from work and saw a lot of bad drivers and two accidents on the way. One dude spun out and collided with both walls on the Wilson Bridge. The roads conditions are terrible and there are far too many people driving far too fast on them. Stay at home unless you absolutely have to go out. You may be a good driver but the majority out there are not.

Posted by: bdeco | January 30, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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