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Posted at 5:00 AM ET, 08/10/2010

Forecast: The doggiest of the dog days

By Matt Rogers

Very hot day today with some relief in the following days

* Relentless heat roasts Russia | Massive ice chunk breaks off glacier *
* Outside now? Radar, lightning, temps & more: Weather Wall *
* 90+ days in 2010: 49 (Apr-May 5, Jun-July-Aug 44); Record 67 (1980) *
* Air Quality: Code orange (unhealthy for sensitive groups) | NatCast *

Today's Daily Digit
A somewhat subjective rating of the
day's weather, on a scale of 0 to 10.


Adding more discomfort to yesterday's misery & the digit descends.
Get the 'Digit' on Twitter


Today: Partly to mostly sunny and very hot. 95-99. | Tonight: Partly cloudy. 75-79. | Tomorrow: Mostly cloudy, but still humid. 91-96. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail


While July is historically the hottest time of the summer (from a climatology perspective), we frequently think of August as the "dog days of summer." The "Dog Days" apparently originate from the star Sirius, whose close proximity to the sun was blamed for hot weather. I had thought it just referred to poor dogs having to heavily pant in the painful heat and sun. Today is definitely going to be one of those days, but we should get a break later this week, before a big summer heat culprit, the Bermuda High, begins to return to the area this weekend.

Temperatures: Latest D.C. area temperature map powered by iMapWeather (base map by Google). Click and hold on map to pan. Double-click to zoom. Refresh page to update. See larger map on our Weather Wall.

Today (Tuesday): Yet another impressive ridge of high pressure over the Ohio Valley will send a hot westerly flow into our area, acting like a blowtorch to push our high temperatures into the mid-to-upper 90s today (reachable records are 97 at Dulles and 98 at Reagan National). The humidity is moderate to high, but at least we have a light breeze under partly to mostly sunny skies. Confidence: High

Tonight: Muggy uncomfortable weather prevails under mostly clear skies. Lows are expected to only drop into the middle 70s, but I would not be surprised to see spots in the city stop at around 80 by early morning. Winds will be mostly light. Confidence: High

Keep reading for the forecast through the weekend...

Tomorrow (Wednesday): A boundary from the north will work to push the Midwest heat ridge back to the west a bit. This will switch our winds to coming from the north and may cloud up our skies. I believe we should still have enough heat lingering around to manage the low-to-mid 90s. Confidence: Medium

Tomorrow Night: A 20% chance of storms must be included with partly to mostly cloudy skies and cooler overnight temperatures in the low-to-mid 70s. Light winds will come from the north or northeast. Confidence: Medium


Thursday should offer some relief from today and Wednesday's hotter weather. Partly to mostly cloudy skies, light winds from the north and northeast, and a 60% likelihood of thunderstorms is favored. Highs should be in the mid-to-upper 80s. Partly cloudy skies and a 40% chance of storms continues on Thursday night as lows drop into the low-to-mid 70s. Confidence: Low-Medium

I'm expecting Friday to be partly to mostly cloudy with a 40% chance of thunderstorms. Highs should be in the mid-to-upper 80s and while not as uncomfortable as earlier this week, there will still be a noticeable level of humidity in the air. Confidence: Low-Medium

The weekend is still looking a bit uncertain. While the hot Midwest ridge pattern is breaking down, we are seeing signs that a Bermuda high ridge is starting to build westward back into our area. This is another route for heat and humidity, but it looks like it may build in gradually over the weekend. That means that Saturday could see highs in the upper 80s with Sunday seeing low 90s. Lows should be in the low 70s, but upper 60s are possible in the suburbs. We should see partly to mostly sunny skies, but there is also a persistent 30% chance of late day thunderstorms. Confidence: Low

By Matt Rogers  | August 10, 2010; 5:00 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
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Any chance the Bermuda High will leave us for the Summer? How long we do we expect this thing to continue to rear it's ugly head?

Posted by: CJWill1 | August 10, 2010 6:26 AM | Report abuse

CJWill, this looks like one of those "slow-burn" summers that linger deep into the meteorological autumn. This could be similar to 2005 or 2007 with a very warm to sometimes hot September yet.

Posted by: MattRogers | August 10, 2010 7:53 AM | Report abuse

Heat in September? Yuck, and unacceptable. Everytime I walk past my closet I hear my jackets whispering, 'wear me.' I loved last September. On the first, we had a massive cold front. Do you remember that? It was perfect timing!

Posted by: authorofpoetry | August 10, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

Yes, I remember! 2009 and 2010 cannot really be much more opposite of summers around here.

Posted by: MattRogers | August 10, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

On the plus side, what looked to be a week of misery looks like only a day or two of misery.

I'll take it. But never have I yearned for a fall so desperately.

Posted by: hereandnow1 | August 10, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

hereandnow1 - I yearn for it as well. I have turned into a grumpy meteorologist with all these DC weather extremes this year! haha

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | August 10, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

How many record highs have we set or tied so far? And I realize that there have been other days when we've only been a degree or two off.

Posted by: HoyaLawyer | August 10, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

The forecast at seem to be saying there will be a dip in dew points (from 68 to 62) in the mid-late afternoon. Any chance this will actually happen?

Posted by: spammy2 | August 10, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

After today and tomorrow, NWS has a nice forecast of all 80s through Thursday Aug 19, including a 79 on Friday!

Looks like the dog days of August, 2010 version won't be nearly as bad as July. The all time 67 90+ days set in 1980 is safe for now.

Posted by: LoudounGeek | August 10, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

LoudonGeek - You being serious? Don't joke about something so serious. If this is true, you've made my week.

Posted by: authorofpoetry | August 10, 2010 10:42 AM | Report abuse


The answer is four. See our new post where we list them.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | August 10, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse had Fairfax at those highs starting Thursday: 87,79,84, 87,86,86,86,85.

Now there is a big divergence as it seems in the 10 day forecasts, as mentioned by Matt in his Weekend outlook. NOAA seems to have slightly higher forecasts than, but lower than CWG.

Posted by: LoudounGeek | August 10, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

For weather records, Jason did a count in his intro paragraph yesterday:

For the dew point question, yes the dew point typically goes down as the temperature and air mass dries out during the afternoon (assuming sun). But the forecast may be too generous. I don't expect to go down that far.

For the 90+ days, I doubt we'll be that fortunate to avoid 90-degree days this weekend and next week. With a Bermuda high edging in next week, I'm favoring low 90s.

Posted by: MattRogers | August 10, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

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