Temperatures make a triumphant return into the 40s today after five days of 30s. There's little time to enjoy the brief warm-up as rain, possibly starting as a wintry mix (well N&W of DC), arrives tonight and continues tomorrow. Then, a cold snap more intense than the previous crashes down on us Sunday night.
We welcomed the first flakes of the winter this morning, but more tranquil weather arrived this afternoon as temps climbed into the upper 30s. Temperatures will gradually fall through the 30s this evening as cloud cover departs. On Saturday, winds from the southeast bring some welcome moderation in temperatures before Sunday's rains.
If you thought the cold early this week was bad, just wait until next week. We've been talking about it in our forecasts for days, but let me provide some specifics...
More than four inches of snow fell in Paris, France yesterday, setting a new snowfall record for the date. It was the heaviest single day snow there since 1987.
A weak disturbance swinging by to the north is squeezing out enough moisture out of the chilled air to produce some light snow showers this morning, especially west and north of the District.
Who knew temperatures near 40 could feel "mild" and almost comfortable. We get that, plus lighter winds, today in exchange for some cloudiness. Then it's another day with 40s tomorrow, but storminess arrives for the end of the weekend. And, yep, there's still a chance for a snowflake or two.
Some Washington weather watchers, including visitors of this blog, will swear to the existence of the "D.C. split". The split scenario occurs when a storm cell seems on a collision course with the District only to break apart to the south and north as it closes in. D.C. split adherents will definitely appreciate this comic (h/t Andrew Freedman), courtesy the blog xkcd...
Cold has begun to relent ever so slightly, but the big difference today has been the relatively lighter -- if still occasionally gusty -- winds. Afternoon highs were also a touch warmer, with readings generally in the mid-30s with some upper 30s as well. We climb further out of the very cold tomorrow, but it's still pretty chilled.
Some are probably wondering why I haven't updated Monday's discussion of the storm slated for late Saturday night into Sunday. The primary low looks increasingly like it will track towards the Great Lakes region which should bring enough warm air into the region and upper levels to keep the bulk of the precipitation as rain. However, considerable uncertainty continues about the precipitation type at onset and at the end of the storm. In essence, there is still a chance that our western suburbs could start as a wintry mix, probably sleet or freezing rain late Saturday night or early Sunday morning and then there is also a possibility that the precipitation could end as a period of light snow.
In "Forecasting Turkeys" part I, I walked you through some of the worst forecast busts from the founding of the National Weather Bureau (now the National Weather Service) in 1870 to 1969. Now, I walk you through some of the most horrendous prediction failures in the modern age of weather forecasting.
Good news: the winds are relaxing taking away some of the cold's bite, and some milder air trickles in by the weekend. The storm passing by on Sunday may generate a little wintry excitement on the front and back end but unless there is a dramatic shift in the track, it probably produces mostly rain. Cold returns with a vengeance next week.
Today marks the 30th anniversary of John Lennon's death. Check out this short clip (h/t Steve Tracton) showing Lennon doing the weather with Tom Brokaw giving the back story
Temperatures this afternoon only climbed into the low-and-mid 30s. A few spots probably only touched freezing. We've got another very cold one tomorrow before things start to rebound, though we should generally stay below average until the next cold shot arrives.
Dateline: North Pole, Santa's Workshop It's just over two weeks before Christmas. Santa and his elves are working anxiously 24/7 to prepare for timely delivery of Christmas gifts by Santa on his sleigh pulled by a team of flying reindeer led, of course, by red-nosed Rudolf. Off in the...
It's that time of year again - the holiday party season. Time to put on your favorite ugly holiday sweater, and carry on awkward banter with coworkers, friends and relatives. For an ordinary individual who works in a relatively noncontroversial field, holiday parties and other social events can be relatively carefree and fun occasions. But for those who work in a climate science-related discipline, these days such events are more like a series of conversational minefields.
For the month to date, D.C. is a little more than 4 degrees below average. We'll warm closer to and maybe above average this weekend, but next week brings another blast of cold & wind. At least the wind takes a brief break starting tomorrow.
The sun made a nice showing this morning, but who has the time to look up at the sky when you're running to get inside from the cold and wind? There is an end in sight to the winds and even a bit of a warm-up, but both will happen only gradually.
Soon enough, we're bound to get some snowflakes. The question is, how will you feel? Did last winter's relentless and record snows change your opinion about the white stuff?
The Washington area had a terrible bout of stink bug weather this past November. One might even say we had at least one episode of severe stink bug weather. Discussed are ways to combat the stink bug.
This windy cold weather shocks our systems. Unfortunately, today sees no improvement over yesterday. And tomorrow is only slightly nicer thanks to a little less wind. Warmer, but not warm, weather returns late in the week and weekend along with precipitation chances.
It sure felt like winter out there today. Despite a fair amount of sun intermixed with some cloudier periods, temperatures only rose into the mid-and-upper 30s for highs. And don't let those numbers fool you, when you add in winds sustained above 20-25 mph much of the day, wind chills have been -- and will remain -- even lower.
The 2009-10 winter season was highlighted by historic snowfalls in late December and early February, breaking all-time records for monthly and seasonal totals. The Snowmageddon book captures the 2009-10 winter season in photographs, snowfall statistics, snowfall plots and weather maps. The storms Snowpocalypse, Snowmageddon, and Snoverkill are detailed in the book.
A possible storm is starting to take shape on the latest weather forecasting models. This potential storm, like many that are almost a week away, is still well west of the U.S. and hasn't even formed yet, so there's considerable uncertainty about the storm's track and what type of precipitation it might bring to the D.C. area and East Coast.
If anything, winds are slightly stronger today than yesterday, and temperatures just as cold. Whipping winds continue tomorrow before easing a bit Wednesday and more so Thursday. Late in the week we see the slightest of warm-ups before iffy precipitation chances toward and/or during the weekend.
It may not be officially winter yet, at least according to the astronomical definition, but meteorological winter has certainly taken hold. Cold temps and biting winds are the story for the next few days. The winds should abate around midweek, but the cold may stick around longer.