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Posted at 10:45 AM ET, 04/21/2010

Forecast: Briefly cooler today with showers

By Dan Stillman

Warmer tomorrow, but with more rain chances to come

* Weather sayings: Do they have any value? | NatCast *
* Outside now? Radar, temps & more: Weather Wall | Health page *

Today's Daily Digit
A somewhat subjective rating of the day's weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.
3Not a total dud. But clouds & some cool showers will have us longing for yesterday's sunnier warmth.
Get tomorrow's 'Digit' on Twitter tonight


Today: Cloudy with showers likely. Upper 50s to near 60. | Tonight: Showers diminish. Mid-40s to near 50. | Tomorrow: Partly sunny. Slight chance of late-day shower. Near 70. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail


If Mother Nature had a suggestions box, it would probably be pretty empty right now, other than a "quit it, already" leftover from after the February snowstorms. Customer satisfaction has to be quite high considering the lopsided count of spectacular days vs. stinkers this spring. While today may not be a total stinker, it will most certainly draw complaints with showers and cooler temperatures. Nicer weather is back for most of tomorrow and Friday before showers threaten again this 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 (Wednesday): Showers move into the area from the south during the morning. It may be the later part of the morning rush or after until we see all that much in the way of rain, with the steadiest activity likely between late morning and early evening. Morning lows in the upper 40s to low 50s won't be too cool, but the showers and cloudy skies should limit highs to the upper 50s to near 60. Breezes should be light from the southeast. Confidence: Medium-High

Tonight: Showers diminish during the early-to-mid evening (rain totals should end up around the .2"-.4" range), though mist or drizzle could linger later. Clearing skies are possible overnight or toward morning, but they could be quickly masked by development of fog. The moist air keeps temperatures from dropping too far as lows only drop back to the mid-to-upper 40s in the burbs and near 50 downtown with light winds. Confidence: Medium

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

Tomorrow (Thursday): We rebound nicely tomorrow with partly sunny skies and highs climbing to near 70. There is a 20% chance or so that a shower or two could pop up in the afternoon or early evening. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow Night: We're looking at a cooler night than the previous couple as skies become mostly clear. Lows should range from the low-to-mid 40s in the cooler suburbs to the mid-to-upper 40s downtown. Confidence: Medium-High


All signs point to a fantastic Friday: Mostly sunny until some high clouds try to come in late in the day, but not before highs max out around the upper 60s. Clouds increase Friday night with lows in the upper 40s to low 50s and a 30% chance of some showers by morning. Confidence: Medium

Rain chances return for what shapes up as a partly to mostly cloudy weekend. Saturday looks like a 40% chance of scattered showers with highs in the 60s. The best chance (around 60%) for more consistent rain comes Saturday night into Sunday morning, with showers still possible (and maybe a couple thunderstorms) through Sunday afternoon as breezes from the south push highs to the upper 60s or into the 70s. Confidence: Low-Medium

By Dan Stillman  | April 21, 2010; 10:45 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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The local TV meteorologists are eating crow for their let's hook em with hyperbole and fear "washout" prediction.

As Gomer Pyle used to say, Shame, shame, shame!!!

Maybe they need a sign to remind them -- "five day forecast is an oxymoron" :-)

Posted by: jaybird926 | April 21, 2010 6:44 AM | Report abuse

Just an uneducated observation ...

Is it just me or does it seem the weather pattern has not changed all that much from this winter? All the storms seem to be doing the same thing, and the cold snaps we continue to get look just like the arctic surges that brought the epic snowfalls.

Assuming there is a pattern and it holds, what's that mean for hurricane season? I know in past years the jet and successive fronts turned storms before they could actually make landfall. Is a similar scenario likely this year, or are we gonna have to get used to tropical rain of the week in the same way we dealt with the Snowpocali?

Of course all long-term forecast stuff is applicable. Just an idle question.

Posted by: AdmiralX | April 21, 2010 7:05 AM | Report abuse

Downpour on my head! I got caught in the first wave of big-dropped-showers this morning.. anyone else get wet walking to work??

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | April 21, 2010 9:28 AM | Report abuse

I think our pattern has changed pretty substantially. In the winter, we used to get 3-4 days of rain only to be interrupted by 1 or 1/2 of clear day( still cold). We almost got 10 inches in December. We've dried out pretty drastically. Even today's rain looks to be .3" or so. I remember measuring 1-2 inches in a 24hr period.

Posted by: jojo2008 | April 21, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

AdmiralX - I'm trying to apply your thinking to tracks of hurricanes. Let me know if you find this applicable. Cold fronts passing off of the coast, through our region, giving us cooler air from Canada--this helps to turn hurricanes back out to sea, away from the coastline. However just two weeks ago we had a "Bermuda High" set up shop off the coast. In the summer, this flow from the south & east can steer hurricanes into the coast. It is hard to say what macro-atmospheric pattern will exist next week. Little confidence. But cold fronts, cold snaps as you say--these air masses out of Canada can help block hurricanes from coming ashore, or at least too far inland.

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | April 21, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

The pattern has been somewhat similar on a large scale (still some blocking etc) but the differences here have been significant over the past 2 mo or so I think. We still got into some decent rain at times last month even though it was quite mild. This month we have not seen much rain at all. I would say the "cold snaps" have not been that cold, it was just realllllly warm in front of them.

I actually like these types of days, spring is supposed to have some of 'em!

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | April 21, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

There is still some "washout" threat, especially Saturday, when the temperature might not rise over 62F or so...could mean raw fifties most of the day.

The key...will the warm front pass us to our north? If it does we have less of a washout threat but a higher threat for some severe weather, especially Sunday afternoon. If the warm front remains to our south, the dreaded washout is still possible...unless the rain is light like it is today.

Unfortunately this darned system seems to want to hang around until the middle of next week or so.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | April 21, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Any long-term forecasts for April 30th, next Friday???? I am having an outdoors event at evening, so I am hoping it doesn't rain so we can have our fun outside on the grass.

Posted by: SanDieganLostinDC | April 21, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Any long-term forecasts for April 30th, next Friday???? I am having an outdoors event at evening, so I am hoping it doesn't rain so we can have our fun outside on the grass.

Posted by: SanDieganLostinDC | April 21, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

We're getting some sunshine this afternoon out in the Blue Ridge. Not a lot of rain this morning (0.2")...

SanDiegan... first what it's worth, Accuweather is calling for afternoon showers on 4/30...

Posted by: spgass1 | April 21, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Can you speculate on when the rain will begin on Saturday? We're having a morning yard sale and I hate to drag all of the stuff out & then be rained on!


Posted by: dcnative22 | April 21, 2010 11:19 PM | Report abuse

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