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Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 02/22/2010

Forecast: Raw, unsettled stretch arrives

By Jason Samenow

Some rain later today, some snow possible midweek

* Satellite, radar and more: Weather Wall | Get There *

Today's Daily Digit
A somewhat subjective rating of the day's weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.
4Clouds early and rain late spells a dismal day.
Get tomorrow's 'Digit' on Twitter tonight


Today: Light rain at times this afternoon. Low 40s. | Tonight: Occasional light rain. 35-40. | Tomorrow: Slight chance of light rain, mainly early. Around 45. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail


Though we hit 50 for the first time all month yesterday, we cool right back down to start the week. It won't be cold enough to snow, however. Instead, we'll have periodic episodes of light rain beginning this afternoon and continuing intermittently into Tuesday. It should become cold enough for a chance of snow to develop Wednesday night into Thursday, but details remain foggy about any amounts. Then we dry out for a windy weekend.

Radar: Latest regional radar shows movement 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.

Today (Monday): The better part of the morning should be dry, though a little light rain could develop mainly to the west and northwest of the Beltway by late morning. Rain will likely develop over the entire region during the afternoon with highs in the low 40s. Winds will be light and from the east at about 5-10 mph. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Occasional light rain is likely to continue as low pressure develops off the Southeast coast. However, it's likely to decrease in coverage and intensity after midnight. Lows will range from the mid-30s in the colder suburbs to around 40 downtown. Confidence: Medium

Keep reading for the forecast through the week...

Tomorrow (Tuesday): There's a 30% chance of light rain in the morning (mainly early, with the best chance north and east of the District) as the coastal low heads off to the north and east. Skies will be variably cloudy in the afternoon, with high temperatures in the mid-40s. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow Night: Skies should be partly cloudy overnight and some cooler air will work its way into the region, with lows 27-33 (northwest to southeast). Confidence: Medium


We get a break from precipitation for most of the day Wednesday when it will just be variably cloudy, breezy and cold, with highs in the low 40s. As another (stronger) upper-level disturbance swings through, snow showers are possible from late afternoon Wednesday into Wednesday night, with lows around 30. The snow may be more significant if this disturbance interacts with a wave of low pressure that could develop off the coast. Confidence: Low-Medium

Snow showers may continue Thursday and it will likely be windy and cold with highs in the 30s. Variably cloudy, windy and cold Thursday night with a chance of snow flurries. Lows should be in the 20s. Confidence: Low-Medium

The Friday through Sunday period looks to be partly sunny, breezy and colder than average as low pressure in southeast Canada drives chilly flow from the northwest southward. The coldest and windiest day will most likely be Friday, with gradually diminishing winds and slowly moderating temperatures by Sunday. Highs should be in the 30s Friday, moderating into the mid-40s by Sunday. Overnight lows may be kept up a bit by the wind, with mid-to-upper 20s in the colder suburbs and low 30s downtown. Confidence: Medium

By Jason Samenow  | February 22, 2010; 11:00 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Forecast: Relatively mild and more melting
Next: February climate facts and near feats


Hm. The initial forecast, a couple days out, for Snoverkill was also just for snow showers. !!! :D

Posted by: kolya02 | February 22, 2010 5:54 AM | Report abuse

It looks like a tough forecast through this week and maybe next week as well. Seems like the models have been all over the place. For example, I thought it would be snowing in the Ohio Valley today but it looks like they are getting Rain/Frz Rain.

Posted by: ntrlsol | February 22, 2010 5:55 AM | Report abuse


It is a tough forecasting week. Complicated pattern...

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | February 22, 2010 8:23 AM | Report abuse

I like the sound of "complicated pattern," especially if it produces more snow & enough snow to close work again!!

Posted by: wadejg | February 22, 2010 8:52 AM | Report abuse

yeah, i kind of like the sound of "complicated pattern", but i get this sick feeling, looking at all those 40s on the "at a glance" forcast, that it's going to be complicated RAIN! and it looks like that one-month snow record is gonna get away from us. who'd have thought that after the wonderful first week of this month?!

jason, gang, model-watchers,
am i being too pessimistic? and, anything good for the first week of march?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Posting on behalf of myself and hundreds of thousands of other people in this area, I am ecstatic that it does not look like we're going to get significant snow accumulation over the next week. Period.

Posted by: Lindemann777 | February 22, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

your last sentence says,
"Overnight lows may be kept a bit by the wind..."

is something missing?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

I think we can put away the snow shovels. Looks like Wed/Thurs will bring cold air aloft, but not much in the way of moisture, no easterly flow, etc. What we would need is cold air at the surface and a relatively warm flow aloft, but we are going to get the opposite.

NB: my snoverkill forecast was a bust except for where I live (3.5 inches in Warren county). I don't think I'll be wrong this time esp. since CWG is on my side this time.

Posted by: eric654 | February 22, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse


Thanks for noting the typo ... it's now been fixed.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | February 22, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse


Re: "Hm. The initial forecast, a couple days out, for Snoverkill was also just for snow showers." ... that's just not true, at least not according to our forecasts here. you can check for yourself in our forecast archive --

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | February 22, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Lindemann777 -- I second that emotion.

Posted by: natsncats | February 22, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Lindemann777 -- I third that.

Looking forward to warmer weather, sunny skies and getting outdoors. I really miss my weekend jogs near my house.

Posted by: ThinkSpring | February 22, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Yup, doing the early spring dance...

Posted by: steske | February 22, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse


Don't discount a run in the cooler weather. Just throw on an extra layer and off you go. Even having to slog through some snow can be good work for your legs and the colder temps are invigorating. Of course I got used to it living in Anchorage for 9 years.

Posted by: marathoner | February 22, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Should we be putting away the snow shovels for good now? It seems like the worst is behind us. I'm a die hard snow lover but I can't get my hopes up this far into Feb and early March.

Posted by: tressoleilgoddess | February 22, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Whether it snows or not in the next couple of weeks, I'm putting away the snow shovel. Rare to have an accumulating snow much past this point that requires use of a shovel. Sun angle helps a lot on my south facing driveway.

Jamie Y aka Weather Checker

Posted by: JamieYPotomac | February 22, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

In a prior post some fellow snow lovers were complaining about the number of events this year, saying we had only had 4. I like snow as much as anyone but that is just not the case, memory is very selective :). Here's a recap:

Dec. 5 - general 3-6" for the area. Larger amounts west of beltway.
Dec. 19 - Snowpocalypse - general 16-24"
Mid- January - clipper, general 1-3"
Jan. 30 - dry powdery snow, 4-8"
Feb. 2 - overnight wet snow, 3-6"
Feb 5-6 - Snowmageddon, 18-32"
Feb. 10 - Snoverkill, 6-14"
Feb. 15 - prez day clipper, light accumulations

So that's 8 events by my count, which for this area is phenomenal. If you want more frequent events unfortunately you have to go somewhere where non synoptic snow can occur. I personally love the idea of lots of moderate 3-6 events but that's just not reality for the east coast, where snow is driven primarily by "big storms."

Posted by: jahutch | February 22, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

I wouldn't put away the snow shovel yet. There's still lots of potential for snow out there. For example, the GFS is looking really interesting for the middle of next week and into the following weekend. Of course, that's too far out to really know what's going to happen, but at the very least it's an indication that more snow can't be ruled out.

Posted by: ElJocko | February 22, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

not sure if you're addressing, me, but i sure didn't get 3" on dec. 5. and i lumped jan 30 - feb 10 into one great period. (my memory actually put "snowverkill" a bit earlier...)

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

yeah....jan 30 - feb 10 was great! oh well...

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

@marathoner -

While I agree with your premise of a cool weather run, I simply don't enjoy it as much with snow on the ground as I either

a) have to run in the road or
b) have to worry about my footing and slipping on ice.

So, I'll likely wait for dry ground before I resume outdoor running. But, glad to hear you keep at it. Good work!

Re: GFS extended. I wouldn't put too much stock into that this time of year. If you look consistently, there will almost always be something there in the long term. But, rarely do any of them come to fruition.

Simply put, we've got 3 weeks for snow chances. After the Ides of March, it's safe to put the shovels away.

Posted by: ThinkSpring | February 22, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

The big issue involving this raw, rainy weather is that Monday/Tuesday is my big Gottaswing dance window @ Chevy Chase and Clarendon's possible that the Carlin Springs buses could fail me again this week, however.

Frankly I suspect that Metro is implementing this as another unwarranted Metrobus "service cut". However, I've been noticing that the snow-related service cutbacks have been LOSING rather than saving money for Metro. With all this late-night track maintenance and occasional "suspicious package" and "suicide" shutdowns, Metro service has been getting increasingly unreliable. This is what discourages Metro ridership and loses money for the system. By comparison, Arlington County's regional ART buses, administererd by Forsyth, have proven more reliable, with service delays due principally to heavy rush-hour traffic on work days. ART buses tend to be running when Metrobus has been having problems.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | February 22, 2010 12:13 PM | Report abuse

How I miss dry weather. Two days of sunshine in a row now seems like an accomplishment.

Posted by: bgaffney491 | February 22, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

It's really not that much cooler today than yesterday, although it feels cooler due to the cloud cover. Manassas is already up to 45.

Looks like it's going to take a little longer for the air to moisten up enough for it to rain. Dew points still in the 20s across the area.

Posted by: dcawx | February 22, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

It looks like this low along this trough Wed-Thru is a little stronger than the models have been predicting the last couple of days. There at least looks to be better agreement between the NAM and GFS. But one would have to ask how much snow accumulating snow could we even expect from this system. The surface temps have been so warm the last couple of days plus this looks like a situation where it could be snowing but above freezing unless the snow brings down all the that arctic air at 8MB with it but I suppose anything may happen. Anyways as usual, just an observation not a forecast.

Posted by: ntrlsol | February 22, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Regarding snow in March, it's not rare at all to get accumulating snow past this point. What's rare is to get more than a few inches. Don't forget that we didn't get any snow last winter until March.

Posted by: nlcaldwell | February 22, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

@CapitalWeatherGang -

Sorry, this is my fault- I wasn't paying attention to detail.

The forecast I was referring to-in my mind, at least- was 's , which did show showers for the earliest forecasts.

Thanks for catching my slip, and for the useful forecast archives link!

Keep up the great work!!

Posted by: kolya02 | February 22, 2010 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Weather prediction is still as much art and science. The science is still limited by computer modeling of complex data points, improving with improvements in computers. I appreciate the detailed, colorful, play by play analysis offered by my favorite weather team, the Capital Weather Gang!

Posted by: drmorris | February 22, 2010 9:48 PM | Report abuse

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