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Posted at 9:00 AM ET, 01/26/2011

Forecast: Early wintry mix, snow thump late

By Ian Livingston

Very intense snowfall possible around PM commute

Posted at 4:30 a.m., updated at 7:20 a.m. and 9:00 a.m.

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

 

About a 10 for hungry snow lovers, but probably closer to a 0 for a good number of others.
 
Get the 'Digit' on Twitter

EXPRESS FORECAST

Today: Morning wintry mix, heavy late-day snow. Mid-30s. | Tonight: Evening snow, mostly cloudy after midnight. Mid-to-upper 20s. | Tomorrow: Partly sunny, breezy. 30-35. | A Look Ahead | Get Express Forecast by E-mail

FORECAST IN DETAIL

The wait is over. Periods of light snow or wintry mix (including rain) that have overspread the area spend some time here before a potential lull featuring spotty showers or drizzle. Get ready though, the main event should be intense when it arrives. The timing could not be worse either, as the heaviest of snow (potentially 1-2" per hour) wants to overlap with significant portions of the afternoon/evening commute. One positive for those still fearful of a repeat of last year: this storm is speedy and should be out of here around midnight.

Snow Potential Index: 10 (↑) - A glimpse back to last season (almost). Late-day snow thump should prove impactful. Weekend flakes?

 
The SPI is a daily assessment of the potential for accumulating snow for the next week on a 0-10 scale. Get the 'SPI' on Twitter
 


Radar & lightning: Latest regional radar shows movement of precipitation and lightning strikes over past two hours. Refresh page to update. Click here or on image to enlarge. Or see radar bigger on our Weather Wall.

Today (Wednesday): Overnight and early morning snow accumulations of up to an inch or three (well north) are possible, particularly west and north of the city where slick spots are likely, especially on untreated roads. Snow mixes with or changes to sleet and rain for a time as well. There may be a brief lessening of precipitation during the midday before the main batch of snow arrives from the southwest by the early afternoon, which probably begins as rain or mixed precipitation around the District and to the south and east.

Any rain or mixed precipitation quickly transitions to snow as the system progresses northeast during the mid-to-late afternoon. The storm should drop heavy snow at its height which looks to be around 3-8 p.m. here right now, coinciding with the afternoon rush hour which may be very hazardous. Temperatures that reach the mid-30s fall back near or below freezing (coldest west). Confidence: Medium

Tonight: Moderate to heavy snow continues into the evening. The early evening likely features part of the brunt including potential for 1"+ per hour snowfall rates. This system is booking along though, so by midnight, if not sooner, snow should come to an abrupt end. By the time it's all done, 3-6"+ should be on the ground here in the city and places east, with 4-8"+ in areas to the north and west (accumulation map). Higher totals are likely in places that receive convective snow banding. Winds kick up from the northwest and could gust to 25 mph as lows reach the mid-to-upper 20s. Confidence: Medium

Keep reading for the forecast for tonight after the snow and into the weekend.

Tomorrow (Thursday): No major cold air comes roaring in behind the system, so we're mostly cold because of the snowpack. Partly sunny skies and a breeze from the northwest mix with fresh snow to create highs near 30 and into the mid-30s. Confidence: Medium-High

Tomorrow Night: Temperatures may tumble quickly early if we stay clear after sunset, but clouds advance in as the evening progresses. Lows near the teens in the suburbs and fall to the 20s downtown. Confidence: Medium-High

A LOOK AHEAD

On Friday a continued active jet stream tries to send another disturbance screaming by the area. This one looks more like previous events that gave us light flurries to perhaps some snow (or even rain) showers. No big deal, and kind of fragile to begin with. Highs reach the mid-to-upper 30s. Confidence: Medium

The weekend looks fair on the whole but we'll have to watch for yet another disturbance flying along the northern jet stream. At first glance it looks a little more energetic than it's potential predecessor but it's also further out. Variably cloudy and the risk of some snow or rain showers should do it. Highs shoot for the 40s Saturday but cool off again Sunday. Lows are mainly in the 20s. Confidence: Medium

By Ian Livingston  | January 26, 2011; 9:00 AM ET
Categories:  Forecasts  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Winter storm warning issued for N & W suburbs
Next: AM update: A break before big snow boom

Comments

First?

All white in Beltsville, grass, roads, cars. Thin layer, but everywhere. Looks like light (but steady) snow/sleet mix. I bet the U of Maryland doesn't open today. Back to bed now. zzzzzzzzzz.

Posted by: uprufssu | January 26, 2011 4:35 AM | Report abuse

Very surprised the Nataional Weather Service did not have a "Winter Storm Warning" for areas south of Baltimore....Looks like another blown call by them!

Posted by: jcmcgrath1969 | January 26, 2011 4:44 AM | Report abuse

(Pulled and reposted and amended from overnight thread.) Just did the Belvoir to Alexandria run to take son to 4:30 a.m. swim practice - 33 degrees with healthy doses of sleet, snow and some rain coming down, with a slushy .25 inch already on ground.

I find it interesting and maybe just a bit cavalier that NWS has only issued a WWA for FfxCo just south of beltway...I know we're borderline criteria, but sounds like this storm might overperform later this afternoon...thoughts?

Thanks, Jason and team, for continuing to follow this through the night...

Posted by: ToBeBlunt | January 26, 2011 4:45 AM | Report abuse

all white stuff here in Columbia, coming down pretty good too.

Posted by: jbroon | January 26, 2011 4:53 AM | Report abuse

well they just closed Loudoun

Posted by: tombeek31 | January 26, 2011 4:54 AM | Report abuse

Woke up around 4:30 am hearing sleet on the windows on Capitol Hill.

Posted by: RepealObamacareNow | January 26, 2011 4:54 AM | Report abuse

THEY CLOSED FCPS!!!!!! YEAH!!!!!

Posted by: tombeek31 | January 26, 2011 5:00 AM | Report abuse

Fcps is closed. It's on WTOP and school's emergency page. Fairfax county public schools- closed today

Posted by: BG347 | January 26, 2011 5:03 AM | Report abuse

Fcps is closed. It's on WTOP and school's emergency page. Fairfax county public schools- closed today

Posted by: BG347 | January 26, 2011 5:04 AM | Report abuse

Got up at 4:30, and decided to telework. It's a 1.5 hour drive on a good day. I already have close to 2" and it's coming down hard. Worst to hit when I would be coming home. What surprises me is that more schools have not closed yet. They seem to close so quickly for 1-2" storms and this one promises to be much bigger and nothing yet. I know alot make their decisions between 5 and 6 a.m., so I'm sure it will pick up.

Posted by: weatherwatcher1 | January 26, 2011 5:05 AM | Report abuse

Light snow in Fulton. Hoco schools closed. Fort Meafe open. Look for traffic nightmare around 32 / 295 / 100 when they dismiss. Nobregard for workers or local roads. Liberal leave would have made sense.

Posted by: biketraveller22 | January 26, 2011 5:07 AM | Report abuse

Schools closed....any thoughts about universities (I have evening classes) and fed cast?

Posted by: sarah54 | January 26, 2011 5:07 AM | Report abuse

Schools closed....any thoughts about universities (I have evening classes) and fed cast?

Posted by: sarah54 | January 26, 2011 5:10 AM | Report abuse

Talk about bad timing. There is a long period between the front and the back end, so it is going to warm up before that back end hits and it is going to hit at the warmest part of the day. Gone spend a lot of that qpf cooling things back down

Posted by: sgustaf1 | January 26, 2011 5:11 AM | Report abuse

sleeting like crazy here in Falls Church.... Telework? YES!

Posted by: jrodfoo | January 26, 2011 5:11 AM | Report abuse

Can hear the sleet coming down from inside in Silver Spring.

Posted by: Dylan0513 | January 26, 2011 5:14 AM | Report abuse

Lake Ridge conditions: Light coating of snow on the cars, roads, and sidewalks (as seen from my bedroom window), possibly more snow than we have seen since mid-December! Some precip is falling - sounds a bit like sleet, but could be rain - not getting up to investigate further!

I for one am totally surprised by FCPS's descion to close! Although given current conditions at my house it makes sense! Just looking at the forecast I figured we'd go today and hopefully get out early! I was worried about my 20 mile trip home - thankfully the weather "cooperated"! If other districts follow suit this should help the evening commute since there won't be busses, parents, and teachers in the mix!

Posted by: mamory1975 | January 26, 2011 5:23 AM | Report abuse

Prince Georges schools closed too.

Posted by: RepealObamacareNow | January 26, 2011 5:25 AM | Report abuse

Saw snow outside around 2am in Woodbridge.. accumulation was about half an inch around 2:20am.. then changed to sleet and rain due to temps climbing up to 34. Still sleeting right now @ 33 degrees.

Posted by: RedCherokee | January 26, 2011 5:25 AM | Report abuse

I'm new to the area and have what is possibly a dumb question. When CWG and other outlets reference N & W of the city, is Arlington/Falls Church considered to be "west" of the city (for forecast purposes) or considered to be within the same forecast as the city when they differ? Basically, when referencing west of the city how far west do you go before it makes a difference? If this doesn't make sense, I blame the lack of sleep! TIA

Posted by: EspBruin | January 26, 2011 5:26 AM | Report abuse

I like what this morning's NAM has in store for the western suburbs...GFS, on the contrary, is getting a little too light for me.

Posted by: rocotten | January 26, 2011 5:29 AM | Report abuse

Woke up to a pleasant surprise here in Gaithersburg. It's snowing moderately with very large wet flakes. Everything is white, including roads and there is at least a 1/2 inch on the ground already. This first part of the storm has already "overperformed". Maybe that bodes well for the the round two thump!

Posted by: hskwak | January 26, 2011 5:29 AM | Report abuse

PWCS Code Red

*Students REMEMBER to study for your mid-terms even MORE!*

Posted by: aquarnnr | January 26, 2011 5:30 AM | Report abuse

Centreville VA
Minimal accumulations of gross sleety/snow stuff on cars & grassy areas. Light sleet/rain coming down right now.
*yawn*

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | January 26, 2011 5:32 AM | Report abuse

latest NWS accumulation forecast, glad i call frederick county, va home :)

http://www.erh.noaa.gov/lwx/winterstorm/

Posted by: vtjudyz | January 26, 2011 5:33 AM | Report abuse

Here in South Arlington, I woke up to what sounded like sleet on the windows, and looked down at the street to what looks to be at least an inch of accumulation on the cars. Sorry, at this hour, I'm not going to go get an accurate measurement, not even in the name of science.

Posted by: stevis23 | January 26, 2011 5:34 AM | Report abuse

Wow, looking at radar, there are some moderate to heavy "bands" setting up right now in and around MoCo. And since my last post a few minutes ago, the snow has picked up in intensity. Judging by the radar, I think we're going to see more than an inch from this initial onset, which is somewhat of a (pleasant) surprise.

Posted by: hskwak | January 26, 2011 5:35 AM | Report abuse

Snowing moderately in Leesburg, no mixing. 0.5-0.75" already on the ground. I'm liking the 8 "plus"

Posted by: AsymptoticUnlimited | January 26, 2011 5:35 AM | Report abuse

and 10% chance all of us nw will see a foot

http://www.hpc.ncep.noaa.gov/wwd/day1_composite.gif

Posted by: vtjudyz | January 26, 2011 5:35 AM | Report abuse

Snow mixing with sleet in Fulton. Neighborhood streets all white. Think NWS putting up warnings late combined with Accuweather still saying 1.6 inches on the way at midnight is going to cause bad fed / business decisions and send a lot of people onto the roads. Doubt our policy makers do much more than read TWC and Accuweather. Yuch. Off I go.

Posted by: biketraveller22 | January 26, 2011 5:36 AM | Report abuse

vtjudyz,

AT LEAST 10% and less than 40, so there is a 10-39% chance of 12 inches. That would be fine with me :)

Posted by: 4seamed | January 26, 2011 5:39 AM | Report abuse

CWG- Do you think the NWS will extend the warning to Fairfax County?

Posted by: cubscapsfan | January 26, 2011 5:39 AM | Report abuse

I call this storm "thumper".
I'll capitalize the "T" if National gets at least 12 inches.

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | January 26, 2011 5:40 AM | Report abuse

and 10% chance all of us nw will see a foot

Posted by: vtjudyz | January 26, 2011 5:35 AM

yeah i already saw a foot.. MY foot!

Posted by: RedCherokee | January 26, 2011 5:42 AM | Report abuse

Western PWC - A light dusting of snow/sleet on the cars and grass, with sleet currently coming down. PWCS called it at 5AM and closed school, which on the one hand is great - I now don't have to worry about rushing home this afternoon for an early dismissal - but on the other hand is leaving me scrambling for alternate care for my son. Not looking forward to this morning's commute; I fear ice far more than I fear snow. As Jason no doubt remembers from his senior year of high school, an inch of ice or even a fraction thereof can paralyze this whole area much more effectively than several inches of snow.

Posted by: jaradel | January 26, 2011 5:43 AM | Report abuse

I think the NWS has a typo in their winter weather advisory for those counties that have one. First they say this:

THE WINTER STORM WATCH IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.

But then they mention this:

A WINTER STORM WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT
SNOW ACCUMULATIONS THAT MAY IMPACT TRAVEL. CONTINUE TO MONITOR
THE LATEST FORECASTS.

They have me confused. Here is the link:

http://forecast.weather.gov/showsigwx.php?warnzone=DCZ001&warncounty=DCC001&firewxzone=DCZ001&local_place1=Washington+DC&product1=Winter+Weather+Advisory

Posted by: Yellowboy | January 26, 2011 5:45 AM | Report abuse

I heard the sleet against the window overnight and today and the snow/sleet accumulation is a little higher than I expected so I am grateful that I can work from home today and stay off the roads. I chuckled when I heard a meteorologist on WTOP apologize this morning for blowing the overnight forecast.

Posted by: JLF03 | January 26, 2011 5:47 AM | Report abuse

By the way, we have rain/sleet here in Burke, VA.

Posted by: Yellowboy | January 26, 2011 5:48 AM | Report abuse

red cherokee
thanks for the early morning laugh

4 seamed
glad u corrected my interperutation, i like those odds better!!

Posted by: vtjudyz | January 26, 2011 5:48 AM | Report abuse

Where is the link to the school closings page if you have one? If you do why is it not more prominent? Am I missing it?

Posted by: bbamin | January 26, 2011 5:50 AM | Report abuse

After a brief lull, snow has resumed in Laytonsville. Falling heavily enough to overcome freshly treated roads. Be careful.

BTW: Good forecasting again, CWG. Your popularity is showing with some of the more contentious threads lately. You all are doing a good job trying to deal with forecasting and moderating outrageous comments. Thx!!!

Posted by: dprats21 | January 26, 2011 5:50 AM | Report abuse

Where is the link to the school closings page if you have one? If you do why is it not more prominent? Am I missing it?

Posted by: bbamin | January 26, 2011 5:51 AM | Report abuse

pretty disappointed here in College Park area. Sleet woke me up, but now it is raining here. It is 34 degrees and I guess I'll be seeing rain most of the day. This is the worst weather possible. I sure hope College Park receives even the 4" they're (NWS and CWG) forecasting.

Posted by: BH99 | January 26, 2011 5:51 AM | Report abuse

snow covered in Montgomery Village. Roads and surfaces and now it sounds like we might be getting some frozen precip. Was surprised to see it coverage so early. Calculating my odds on commuting into DC now and trying to get back out before the second storm. Also waiting to here what MoCo schools will do. Stay safe everyone! BTW, thanks to CWG for the awesome analysis of the storms. Really appreciate the love blogging of the models, the zone maps, timelines, and the way you stay on top of the storms! You are the best!

Posted by: soleil2000 | January 26, 2011 5:52 AM | Report abuse

Wow ... 5:30am and already more accumulation than we've had from other storms this year. We can't see the grass anymore in North Potomac.

Posted by: lunchtimereader | January 26, 2011 5:54 AM | Report abuse

SCHOOL CLOSINGS LIST DON'T FORGET TO REFRESH
http://www.wtopnews.com/?nid=228&a=1
CWG: i suggest you copy this link into your post, it would be an hour to have a link taken in by you....

Posted by: SnowDreamer | January 26, 2011 5:56 AM | Report abuse

Sorry for the typos above-- typing without coffee! Just heard MoCo is closed today (administrative offices are open). Kids will be thrilled. My son has been hoping for some sleddable snow. Not sure yet if this will qualify but it's definitely still coming down. Stay safe!

Posted by: soleil2000 | January 26, 2011 5:59 AM | Report abuse

woke up to the sweet sweet sounds of the plow, looked out the window to see White!

but but but, I thought I had time this morning to make the mad run for milk!!!

Posted by: kirom | January 26, 2011 5:59 AM | Report abuse

honor*

IAD now experiencing a weather mix of rain and frozen precip...

Posted by: SnowDreamer | January 26, 2011 6:02 AM | Report abuse

red cherokee
thanks for the early morning laugh

Posted by: vtjudyz | January 26, 2011 5:48 AM

:)

I could use some cheering up after seeing the rain.. lol

Traffic-wise, it's better for everyone but i'll be looking forward to tonight anyway.

Posted by: RedCherokee | January 26, 2011 6:03 AM | Report abuse

Mixing- snowing and sleeting at the same time in Laytonsville. Roads are very sloppy.

Posted by: dprats21 | January 26, 2011 6:06 AM | Report abuse

As of 6:08 a.m., OPM reporting the federal gov't is opening per normal. Do they work undergound in a windowless bunker?

Posted by: atoms5 | January 26, 2011 6:10 AM | Report abuse

Woke up to the sound of sleet hitting my window (in Alexandria). Looks like there's a little snow on the grass & slush on the road. Yuck.

Posted by: esmith22015 | January 26, 2011 6:12 AM | Report abuse

About an inch of snow on the ground here in north pg county laurel. Sleeting now. Cul de sac covered.

Posted by: megamuphen | January 26, 2011 6:12 AM | Report abuse

Only a WWA? Seems like NWS has different thoughts on today's potential impact. APS is open. Hopefully when the nasty stuff comes, we can get home before it hits. Wonder if my University evening class will be canceled.

Posted by: Snowlover2 | January 26, 2011 6:13 AM | Report abuse

About an inch in Cloverly, and the precipitation is now switching over to sleet, assume cold rain will be coming shortly. Looks like what fell in the last couple of hours stuck pretty much everywhere so there's a good base coat for later and the roads are covered enough to be slushy. Sounds like ok driving for a few hours but going downhill fast in the PM.

Posted by: MDDem2 | January 26, 2011 6:15 AM | Report abuse

Just took the dog for a walk in NE DC and was pelted by a steady fall of freezing rain/sleet. These are huge ice chunks, btw. There's about an inch of slippery, slushy mess, and about a half-inch on the roads.

Posted by: MadRabbitScientist | January 26, 2011 6:18 AM | Report abuse

CWS, what do you think are the chances of OPM dismissing early today?

Posted by: PSUMarkDC | January 26, 2011 6:20 AM | Report abuse

SLUSHY ROADWAYS VERY DANGEROUS.

Keep speeds down. Slush puddles cause accidents as they grab one tire with a great deal of stopping power and cause you to spin out.

Take it slow on slush. I learned this the hard way as a teenager in NH. Slush is worse than snow. Take it slow.

Rain/sleet/snow mix now in Laytonsville.

Posted by: dprats21 | January 26, 2011 6:29 AM | Report abuse

Good morning. Looks like the worst of our heavy snow potential is after 4pm and especially in the evening hours, so anything that opens this morning has a good chance of staying open rather than dismissing too early.

Posted by: MattRogers1 | January 26, 2011 6:29 AM | Report abuse

6:29 am. Layhill and Bel Pre in N. Silver Spring. Took dogs out. Over an inch of wet snow. Frozen precipitation that looks more like snow than sleet. Be safe on the roads today.

Posted by: Hanz1 | January 26, 2011 6:29 AM | Report abuse

Well, crud. I figured FCPS would be delayed tomorrow, but closed today? Not good for getting work done.

Posted by: BDVienna | January 26, 2011 6:34 AM | Report abuse

NOOOO SCHOOOL FOR MOCO!!!!!!!!!!

WOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!

time to go back to bed

I LUVV SNOW!!!!

Posted by: SNOWLUVER | January 26, 2011 6:36 AM | Report abuse

We woke the kids before checking that FCPS was closed. Can't believe they closed due to .5 inch on ground even if more expected this afternoon. They could have done early dismissal.

Posted by: BidsKids | January 26, 2011 6:36 AM | Report abuse

This is the kind of day I stockpile leave for.

Posted by: meta2 | January 26, 2011 6:39 AM | Report abuse

Actually, 2 inches in Cloverly. Mostly rain at this point

Posted by: MDDem2 | January 26, 2011 6:43 AM | Report abuse

I didn't make my decision until our driver put the van in drive (I was literally ready to drive back home and go back to bed). We had half a van load from Front Royal and we will head back today at 1PM. That will a precip lull, but it will not be a traffic lull. Also by the time we get out to the western counties (2-3pm) it will be snowing and 66 will be snow covered.

Posted by: eric654 | January 26, 2011 6:45 AM | Report abuse

Rain and a little sleet here in the Tantallon section of Ft Washington. Walked down the driveway to get the WaPo print edition and the street was just wet, but the driveway had a layer of very slick slush. The grass and cars are covered with a slush as well. Thanks OPM, get to go to work and drive home during the afternoon rush...oh goody......

Posted by: ftwash | January 26, 2011 6:45 AM | Report abuse

Snow and some freezing rain hit BETHESDA this morning. First picture posted on http://www.bethesdaactually.com/

More to come.

Posted by: snowlover11 | January 26, 2011 6:45 AM | Report abuse

Snow and some freezing rain hit BETHESDA this morning. First picture posted on http://www.bethesdaactually.com/

More to come.

Posted by: snowlover11 | January 26, 2011 6:46 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: marklandterrapins | January 26, 2011 6:49 AM | Report abuse

Back to snow in Laytonsville.

What's it like elsewhere? P-type reports help the gang know what's happening.

Posted by: dprats21 | January 26, 2011 6:50 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, forgot my ptype report. Large flakes in Front Royal but rain east of the Blue Ridge mixed with sleet, heavy in spots. The lull is moving in, but there is a double barrel surface low (west and east NC) so showers may fill in again.

Posted by: eric654 | January 26, 2011 6:54 AM | Report abuse

Helpful suggestion when you come up with your updated snow accumulation map could you design so it will enlarge. Difficult to see where the line is in NOVA. i cant tell if my bro who lives behind South Run Recreation Center is south or North of your line. I need to deliver some kitchen cabinets and I was going to stop by my sis's place in Bristow to walk her dogs.
Yesterday's map makes it difficult to discern line.

And BTW it must be nice to be a snow lover and not have to drive in this stuff or work outside. I have 300+ ewes dropping lambs and snow and freezing precip makes live difficult. A winter w/o snow would be great. Come on global warming. I fire up my old 2002 w no pollution gear and do my part. Dont buy low emission farm equipment. Let it rot on the lots. govt needs to stay out of regualting farm equipment.

Posted by: sheepherder | January 26, 2011 6:55 AM | Report abuse

CWG - I know it's a tough call to predict exact temps, but what's your best guess for when snow will start to stick on DC roads today? After sunset or earlier?

Posted by: DJMDJM | January 26, 2011 6:59 AM | Report abuse

Over 2 inches in Columbia. Sleet/freezing rain and 33 degrees.

Posted by: Phils-in-Columbia | January 26, 2011 7:03 AM | Report abuse

Anyone care to commnt why NWS chooses WWA as opposed to WSW when the line between less than 5" and more than 5" still seems very close? And what happens if it changes to all snow early and precip is heavy enough to warrant a WSW, will they upgrade it? Lastly, anyone else notice the NWS snowfall map says "no snowfall map avail"?

Posted by: iceauctions | January 26, 2011 7:06 AM | Report abuse

just got back from a run around south arlington, wet slushy/icy conditions on side streets and sidewalks main roads are very wet but with some large puddling in spots. Be careful out there folks. Off to DCPS where they never close.

Posted by: VAresident2 | January 26, 2011 7:08 AM | Report abuse

I would think that they would upgrade it to a warning from DC west because the WWA says 3-5 inches but the 7 day forecast says 3-7 inches. And it is odd that there is no snow map. Maybe they are changing it?

Posted by: cubscapsfan | January 26, 2011 7:08 AM | Report abuse

@iceauctions yeah..NWS snowfall map not available for while. They were updating it. There's a new map out now. They've reduced the estimate for the DC area a bit. 3-4" rather than 4-5".

Posted by: BH99 | January 26, 2011 7:09 AM | Report abuse

DJMDJM, I was thinking around 4-5pm for NW suburbs and maybe closer to 5-6pm for DC itself. Timing the next chunk of precip will be tricky- because it has to be heavy enough to overwhelm warmer temps today and start accumulating on roads- should have a better handle around lunchtime.

Posted by: MattRogers1 | January 26, 2011 7:11 AM | Report abuse

At least 1/3 inch of white stuff (mixed snow, rain, sleet) at the foot of the front stairs in Silver Spring. I imagine there's even more, further from the house.

Posted by: Murre | January 26, 2011 7:14 AM | Report abuse

Well, we woke up to about a half inch of snow. My kids caught a glimpse out the window and said "WAIT - is that - I thought I saw - SNOWWWWWW!!!" (You have to say that last part like South American soccer announcers say "GOAL!").

Looking forward to tonight's thump. We're all in school in Arlington, and we'll get ourselves in good shape at work and school for some serious morning sledding tomorrow. Come on snow!

Posted by: BadMommy1 | January 26, 2011 7:17 AM | Report abuse

CWG-

A couple have already asked about this, but how is NWS calling for 6-8 inches on the hig side for FFX county and issuing only a Winter Weather Advisory? Doesn't this go against their own criteria?

Posted by: 4seamed | January 26, 2011 7:18 AM | Report abuse

2.75 inches of wet snow on the ground in Columbia as of 7am. Seems to have changed over to sleet now.

Posted by: bac5 | January 26, 2011 7:21 AM | Report abuse

Alexandria/Franconia section of Fairfax County: Now getting steady rain, atop about half-inch of overnight snow.

Posted by: InVA1 | January 26, 2011 7:24 AM | Report abuse

DC (columbia heights -- mid NW, highest elevations in the city) was a mess this morning. At around 3 it was moderate snow, switched over to sleet seemed like, then freezing rain and rain by 6. Easily an inch and a half of NASTY slush on everything. Down in the federal part of town, not quite as much slush and very little rain.

Posted by: AdmiralX | January 26, 2011 7:25 AM | Report abuse

YUS!!!!!! NWS just changed IAD precip. back to 5-9"... it was 3-7"

Posted by: SnowDreamer | January 26, 2011 7:26 AM | Report abuse

question for CWG...NWS and CWG calling for 3-4+" in DC itself. What's the confidence in that happening at this point? Or is an inch or 2 still likely at this point? Thanks.

Posted by: BH99 | January 26, 2011 7:27 AM | Report abuse

I have to comment about the use of the word "thump".

Just lovely and descriptive, a thump of snow is forecast.

Thanks CWG, you raised a smile in me.

Bill Castner

Posted by: bcastner | January 26, 2011 7:28 AM | Report abuse

It is a soupy mess in Tenleytown. Do I have to get in the car? I await the answer from above......

Posted by: mjwies11 | January 26, 2011 7:29 AM | Report abuse

Some sleet pinging off the windows in nw dc still, about 1/2" or so eyeballed.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 26, 2011 7:30 AM | Report abuse

@Bidskids

They are closing to avoid the situation that usually occurs with early dismissal, lots of busses on the roads @ once, parents trying to get to kids, teachers having to stay behind to wait for stragglers, etc(husband of PG County school librarian, so I know a little). If the situation is going to get worse in the afternoon, it makes sense to just close, as the amount of effort it takes to get an early dismissal going is pretty large.
Its an inconvenience to be sure, but I think the school systems gets criticized no matter what they do.

Posted by: jbroon | January 26, 2011 7:32 AM | Report abuse

Curious... Why are some stations saying 3-6 inches for Western Md. and then channel 7 has 6+??

Posted by: marie_d1 | January 26, 2011 7:36 AM | Report abuse

Hi, 4seamed, it seems that Fairfax is really on the edge of their criteria. Their statement on the WWA favors 3-5" for Fairfax: http://forecast.weather.gov/showsigwx.php?warnzone=VAZ053&warncounty=VAC059&firewxzone=VAZ053&local_place1=Dulles+VA&product1=Winter+Weather+Advisory

If any NWS folks monitor this blog, it would be really nice if they could comment. I notice their zone forecast is 2-4" this afternoon and additional 2-4" tonight for Fairfax so that adds up a bit higher than 3-5"!

Posted by: MattRogers1 | January 26, 2011 7:36 AM | Report abuse

Here is a summary of what various outlets are predicting for inside the beltway:

WJLA:3-6
WUSA: 4-8
Fox5: 3-5
NBC4: 5-10
NWS: 3-5
TWC: 5-8

and obviously the CWG is 3-8. So the average seems to be around 5-6 inches insider the beltway. Let's see what happens...

Posted by: danog224 | January 26, 2011 7:37 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Danog224, great work!

Posted by: MattRogers1 | January 26, 2011 7:38 AM | Report abuse

Office manager just sent out an email to all with a link to CWG. First time I've seen that! Well done CWG!

Posted by: SPS1 | January 26, 2011 7:39 AM | Report abuse

WJLA says 6 - 10" for Loudoun (where I am!).

Hooray for snow!!!

Posted by: BobMiller2 | January 26, 2011 7:41 AM | Report abuse

Surprised that no one has answered this yet, so here goes my try:

Unlike tornado and severe thunderstorm warnings, which are issued for a specific geographic region (think polygon) and then associated with counties, a winter storm warning is issued based on zones, which for the immediate metro area is by counties (with the independent cities lumped in with the counties). Yes, western Fairfax and western Prince William have NWS predictions that easily make WSW criteria, but the eastern parts of the counties don't while the central parts are borderline.

Also remember the purpose of the warnings. For a tornado warning, you need to seek immediate cover. For a hurricane warning, you need to think about evacuating. Around here, the fine line between a WSW and a WWA isn't that crucial, as the school systems have already proven.

Posted by: jkuchen | January 26, 2011 7:43 AM | Report abuse

And of course Matt answers the question while I'm typing my response. There are two keys: one, because of zones, WSWs can't be issued for parts of counties in the immediate metro area. Two, the amount of snow that really will fall is not a function of whatever product the NWS issues :-)

Posted by: jkuchen | January 26, 2011 7:46 AM | Report abuse

@marie_1 - Western MD is getting clocked, so I'd go with your higher end predictions.

Posted by: prickles1009 | January 26, 2011 7:48 AM | Report abuse

But you make some excellent points jkuchen. The county system is definitely a communications restraint.

Posted by: MattRogers1 | January 26, 2011 7:48 AM | Report abuse

well said you two... IAD has no precip. right now, ~.25" of a slushy ice, snow mix.

Posted by: SnowDreamer | January 26, 2011 7:48 AM | Report abuse

EspBruin,
we weather-losers in falls church and arlington get basically the same weather as "dc" or "the city". when forecasters say "north and west etc...of the city" they generally mean well outside the beltway - gaithersburg, damascus, leesburg, dulles, manassas, etc...

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 26, 2011 7:49 AM | Report abuse

I think this is the map that we snow-lovers will love most:

http://images.tbd.com/weather/totalstuenight_606.jpg

CWG: Is this morning's GFS of any concern to you or is it better to trust the NAM? I noticed the GFS favored a drier solution. Do you think the GFS could be hinting at something (i.e. a miss)??

Posted by: BobMiller2 | January 26, 2011 7:51 AM | Report abuse

come now walter, you're a talented sculpturist! I'm sure you can make something of this (a hat, broach, pterodactyl?).

We're not weather-losers today!


Posted by: kirom | January 26, 2011 7:52 AM | Report abuse

that right there is a beauty of a map...

Posted by: SnowDreamer | January 26, 2011 7:53 AM | Report abuse

"North & west of the city" comes from the days of rabbit ears and radio towers. People 40-50 miles to the west could still get Washington stations, even though the winters are colder on average as you get nearer the mountains and away from the tidewater.

Posted by: prickles1009 | January 26, 2011 7:53 AM | Report abuse

Snowing pretty good in Hagerstown right now, local radio station is saying 6-11 inches out here when all is said and done. Probably a little over an inch on the ground out here already and the roads are already covered.

Posted by: PhilR | January 26, 2011 7:53 AM | Report abuse

about 2 inches of snow on the ground here in Baltimore. Still coming down. The roads are terrible.

Posted by: bachaney | January 26, 2011 7:55 AM | Report abuse

@BobMiller2, it's not really drier, just the bullseye a bit SE of a few of the other models. The RUC has a nice 2 hr heavy snow window (.1 - .25 liquid/each hour) for DC 11pm-1am.

Posted by: finger11 | January 26, 2011 7:56 AM | Report abuse

"Impactful"? Really?

Posted by: Heraklitus | January 26, 2011 8:00 AM | Report abuse

Just ran 3.5 miles out in the Fair Oaks/Lakes area. The sidewalks weren't very slippery, just heavy slush in some areas. I saw only 1 other pedestrian the whole time.

Posted by: VelocityAtrocity | January 26, 2011 8:01 AM | Report abuse

I understand the heavy snow is predicted for the 3-8PM time frame, but when is it the snow generally expected to start in the Dulles area? I have to go to work for few hours this morning so I'm wondering when the snow is expected to arrive in the area? Thanks.

Posted by: FH59312 | January 26, 2011 8:03 AM | Report abuse

NWS does do "zone" weather advisories for Fauquier County in the winter. Is that because they're considered outside the Metro area and thus under different rules?

Right now the northwest part of the county is a Winter Storm Warning, with the rest of the county in an Advisory.

Posted by: RedRedRed | January 26, 2011 8:06 AM | Report abuse

1.5-2 inches of snow with sleet falling by the time I left for work this morning in Howard county. Roads were still untreated too. Stayed that way until I got into PG county on 95. Good snowball making stuff too...

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 26, 2011 8:08 AM | Report abuse

Confirming eric654's 6:54 report of ptype east of Chester Gap (Blue Ridge S of Front Royal). Here in a hollow right up against the east slope of the Blue Ridge outside of Sperryville, it's 32 w/ about 3/8" of sleet, no snow so far.

Posted by: NorthFork1 | January 26, 2011 8:09 AM | Report abuse

I came in to work from the Marc Train from Gaithersburg where I stay, to DC. In the morning it was all snow in Gaithersburg, with accumulation sticking. In DC it's rain though. I'm definitely leaving at lunchtime.

Posted by: superseiyan | January 26, 2011 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Bobmiller2, the radar seems to suggest the second piece of energy is quite strong and staying on a more northerly heading rather than what that last GFS was showing. http://radar.weather.gov/ridge/Conus/centgrtlakes.php But definitely something to watch on the midday models.

Posted by: MattRogers1 | January 26, 2011 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Fauquier was split into two chunks (NW and SE) about a year ago to handle days like this. Otherwise warnings are county by county except out in the Alleghenies.

Posted by: eric654 | January 26, 2011 8:10 AM | Report abuse

From my fourth floor apartment windows at Leisure World in Silver Spring near Olney, MD, it looks like one to two inches of white stuff on the ground. Thank goodness I'm retired. I'm glad to stay inside today and perhaps tomorrow. You guys at CWG do a fantastic job!

Posted by: dick1932 | January 26, 2011 8:13 AM | Report abuse

In FFX City all precipitation has stopped since about 7:30... is it possible that we might not get the 2-4 inches that the NWS is calling for during the daytime?

Posted by: ffxside | January 26, 2011 8:13 AM | Report abuse

FH59312, I'm guessing in the 2-3pm window for Dulles for snow transition, but then following hours for heavier stuff.

Posted by: MattRogers1 | January 26, 2011 8:13 AM | Report abuse

In FFX City all precipitation has stopped since about 7:30... is it possible that we might not get the 2-4 inches that the NWS is calling for during the daytime?

Posted by: ffxside | January 26, 2011 8:14 AM | Report abuse

In FFX City all precipitation has stopped since about 7:30... is it possible that we might not get the 2-4 inches that the NWS is calling for during the daytime?

Posted by: ffxside | January 26, 2011 8:15 AM | Report abuse

ffxside, our real accumulating precip is coming later this afternoon. This batch this morning is just a warm-up.

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 26, 2011 8:15 AM | Report abuse

@ffxside

I think we will get 2-4, because that counts for the afternoon as well, when the heavy stuff is going to be falling.

Posted by: cubscapsfan | January 26, 2011 8:17 AM | Report abuse

Sleet just started here in Colesville/Silver Spring.

For those of us lucky enough to stay home today, should we do anything with our driveways/sidewalks before the snow comes this afternoon? Or just leave it be until tomorrow?

Posted by: BusyMom1 | January 26, 2011 8:20 AM | Report abuse

@cubscapsfan

I would then say we probably have a pretty good chance for at least four inches and even five plus inches. What do you think?

Posted by: ffxside | January 26, 2011 8:20 AM | Report abuse

@ffxside

I think that sounds right. Hopefully more though!

Posted by: cubscapsfan | January 26, 2011 8:24 AM | Report abuse

precip. has started again at IAD, light rain.

Posted by: SnowDreamer | January 26, 2011 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps I missed this someone, but do we have some idea of how likely schools/universities (specifically, Univ. of Maryland) are to be open/closed tomorrow morning based on timing of precipitation and temperatures?

Regardless, bring on the snow!

Posted by: batsandgates | January 26, 2011 8:28 AM | Report abuse

@cubscapsfan

Hopefully those hours of heavy snow really do start to accumulate!

By the way, light rain or freezing rain has started again here in fairfax

Posted by: ffxside | January 26, 2011 8:29 AM | Report abuse

I echo Brian, the real story is this afternoon and evening when the very potent upper center will be moving through. The nam model soundings still show an unstable layer suggesting the potential for thundersnow. The 06Z model runs gave dca around 1" liquid equivalent with the upper center. That was a little heavier than the previous run for the nam. If anything, I think the bottom end of our dc range may need to be bumped up a little but that will wait until the new guidance gets in this morning.

Posted by: wjunker | January 26, 2011 8:30 AM | Report abuse

@CWG - Nowcasting vs. model casting, is the secondary piece of energy as anticipated or is it going to give more or less snow to the area later today/tonight, than shown on the recent models? Thanks!

Posted by: snowlover | January 26, 2011 8:30 AM | Report abuse

kirom,
i just say "losers" because i am forever hearing from in-laws in gaithersburg and damascus and my sister in ashburn things like, "oh, you only got 2"... we had 5" here... yeah, it was all snow - no mix. still coming down...etc..."

and you can be sure i'll make something. right now i'm in full trying-to-work-but-wondering-what-the-heck-am-i-gonna-make-this-time panic mode.... i'm concerned about pavement accumulations. hopefully that really pretty map bob put up verifies (6"+!!), and the pavement won't matter so much.

matt, you said,
"...the second piece of energy is quite strong and staying on a more northerly heading rather than what that last GFS was showing."

you're scaring me. what does this mean? more or less snow for zone zero (my yard)?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 26, 2011 8:30 AM | Report abuse

ffxside, that "daytime" total would come in the late afternoon to early evening with the 2nd event.

Posted by: MattRogers1 | January 26, 2011 8:30 AM | Report abuse

New GFS is not favoring a drier solution, no need to worry. :)

Posted by: 4seamed | January 26, 2011 8:31 AM | Report abuse

@Brian-CapitalWeatherGang wouldn't you call it more of a cool down, rather than a warm up :)

Posted by: bitner | January 26, 2011 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Our precipitation has been sleet and rain since a little before I last posted. During that time a rabbit hopped across the driveway, I think the first rabbit I've seen at the house.

Posted by: Murre | January 26, 2011 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Woke up to what looks like a half inch to an inch in Frederick, MD. Still getting large flakes of snow falling, but it's definitely light. And it seems to be all snow at the moment.

Schools are closed, yet my library is opening on time--oy vey. I'm kind of hoping that by the time I'm supposed to be at work at noon, they'll announce we're closing early. [fingers crossed] Thankfully, my commute is on foot, so I won't have to worry about driving.

Posted by: dettiot | January 26, 2011 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Nothing but rain here in Old Town Manassas. Some white stuff on the cars and grass from the overnight. Is all this rain going to cool the surface and allow more sticking when the snow begins?

Posted by: jbernard703 | January 26, 2011 8:35 AM | Report abuse

@MattRogers1

Thanks for the update!

Posted by: ffxside | January 26, 2011 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Radar is showing rain in McLean/Arlington, but as far as I can tell none of it is hitting the ground. I'm so anxious for snow!!

Posted by: HokieTerp | January 26, 2011 8:38 AM | Report abuse

@MattRogers1

Thanks for the update!

Posted by: ffxside | January 26, 2011 8:40 AM | Report abuse

@HokieTerp,

At my office here in McLean, I can hear sleet hitting the windows. At least it sounds louder than raindrops.

Posted by: dbburns | January 26, 2011 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Oh wow... This shows snowfall rates of 3-4 inches per hour....
http://rapidrefresh.noaa.gov/hrrrconus/from_jet/hrrr/t3/2011012611/1hsnw_t3sfc_f15.png

Posted by: cubscapsfan | January 26, 2011 8:45 AM | Report abuse

WOW 4 inches already!.............wait......oh......no nvm, that was the sleet pile i just shoveled on my driveway.....

Posted by: arcdfire | January 26, 2011 8:47 AM | Report abuse

I love CWG and think they do a fantastic job. But, I have to say, I miss the mystery and anticipation of the unknown.

Nigh four decades ago when I was a kid, weather forecasting was not nearly so accurate, to put it mildly. Back then, if a snowfall happened to make it into the forecast, one really never knew what to expect. A nighttime winter weather advisory might have resulted in waking up to soul-crushing bare pavement or a blanket of cottony snow, but one always went to bed giddy with thoughts of maybe tromping through knee-deep powder.

Now, we demand to know exact depths, hour by hour, and even the consistency of the snow, days ahead of the storm. If it does not come to pass as predicted, we feel ripped off and demand an accounting of where our snow went. I think some of those who profess to not put credence in the snow forecasts, or downplay it, harken back to the days when one could be overwhelmed with the unexpected joy of seeing a landscape of pure white. I do miss the unknowing anticipation and the rare joy of finding a white world no one expected.

Posted by: OsnowO | January 26, 2011 8:47 AM | Report abuse

Matt - Thanks for the NWS update...in Fairfax county I think everyone is REALLY confused right now...we're hearing stuff like 5-10 inches with a winter storm warning for fairfax on the radio...yet the NWS scaled down the totals to 3-5 inches and we only have an advisory. On the flip-side, we have about a half inch of snow on the ground and it's sleeting...so I'm definitely thinking we're getting mainly snow later today. I feel like the mets in this region are ALL OVER the place. I'll just stick with you guys though, 4-8 is still my story.

Posted by: parksndc | January 26, 2011 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: finger11 | January 26, 2011 8:48 AM | Report abuse

LWX just lowered their totals to 1-3" for Fairfax. I knew we were going to end up getting screwed again.

Posted by: oriolesfan2323 | January 26, 2011 8:50 AM | Report abuse

@arcdfire ... are you a fan of the band Arcade Fire?

Posted by: Murre | January 26, 2011 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Is it just me or does the 06z GFS look like it has much of the heaviest precipitation slightly skirting south of the DC area, while NAM is more a direct hit?

Posted by: wappledoo | January 26, 2011 8:51 AM | Report abuse

@cubscapsfan

if those 3-4 inch rates continued even for a couple hours snow totals would be way higher than the current forecast!

Posted by: ffxside | January 26, 2011 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Steady to heavy rain in the district at the moment, and I say BOO. Imagine the snowfall totals if we were just a few degrees colder...

Posted by: matthew_lawlor | January 26, 2011 8:55 AM | Report abuse

I'm officially off the snow wagon (and am putting the milk back on the shelf at Giant). This "storm" has all the earmarks of being a dud. Maybe February will be kinder to snow lovers.

Posted by: ShovelPlease | January 26, 2011 8:57 AM | Report abuse

@Murre ...... yes! my favorite band out there!

as for the snow, i think we may see a bit more than 4 to 8 if those hourly rates are legit.

Posted by: arcdfire | January 26, 2011 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Here in Baltimore it seems to have been all snow so far. Husband just shoveled and cleaned off the cars. He said about 3" and no ice.

Posted by: weatherwatcher1 | January 26, 2011 8:58 AM | Report abuse

OsnowO, you said,
"Nigh four decades ago when I was a kid, weather forecasting was not nearly so accurate, to put it mildly. Back then...one really never knew what to expect. ... I do miss the unknowing anticipation and the rare joy of finding a white world no one expected."

as a kid, i used to wake up EVERY winter morning and look out the window first thing just hoping, praying, to see snow. i can still imagine that barren brown grass that i almost always saw... but i can also recall the joy of seeing white!

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 26, 2011 8:59 AM | Report abuse

@dbburns

I'm about to head out to run some last minute errands, so I guess I'll find out relatively soon!

Posted by: HokieTerp | January 26, 2011 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Insanity at the Centreville Giant. Bottled water is sold out, snack aisle is decimated. 5+ person lines at all registers.

Posted by: getjiggly2 | January 26, 2011 8:59 AM | Report abuse

GFS isnt going to verify. NAM appears on the ball...and my 3 minutes of snow in DC (18th and E NW) just ended. Temp is 34...mostly light rain now. Can not wait to get back to Loudoun for the main event tonight. Its going to be like a summer downpour but instead of cold stinging rain, we're gonna have fluffy marshmallowy goodness piling up around us like sugar pouring from the sky. Where art thou ULL?

Posted by: DullesARC | January 26, 2011 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Woke up this morning at 5:30 to a UBalt Alert message saying delayed opening- ah, bliss. Looking at this forecast, I'm not sure it's worth me making the trip up there for my one class- I'd be returning to DC around 4:30, in the thick of the thump. There's nothing I fear/loathe more than dealing with a commute home in the kind of weather they are calling for.

Posted by: MasonPatriot1 | January 26, 2011 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Lots of mixed messages -- when can we expect the next update?

Posted by: Rjmw | January 26, 2011 9:03 AM | Report abuse

@oriolesfan2323: If you're going by the "storm total" map on LWX's home page, it's wrong, or at least deceiving. The 6-hour map ending at 7pm has more snow on it than the "storm total" map, and the latter has totals ending at 6pm today. Methinks they generated the wrong graphic.

If you're going by the forecasts, perhaps you're looking at just today, i.e. not including tonight. Yes, the City of Fairfax has 1-3 forecast for today, but they've got another 2-4 in store for the evening.

Posted by: jkuchen | January 26, 2011 9:05 AM | Report abuse

The 12Z nam is really wet (snowy) over dca with it giving around an inch in the 6 hr period ending at 7PM and another .25 after 7PM. There also have been reports of thunder in WV with the upper low. Late this afternoon into this evening should be interesting even over the city and the counties jsut to its east.

Posted by: wjunker | January 26, 2011 9:08 AM | Report abuse

@jkuchen

I was looking at their new experimental snowfall total map. But I just checked out the text forecasts and it still says 1-3" for DC, and 2-4" for Fairfax (for the total storm totals) as updated at 8:18am.

DC:
http://weather.noaa.gov/pub/data/forecasts/zone/dc/dcz001.txt

FFX:
http://weather.noaa.gov/pub/data/forecasts/zone/va/vaz053.txt

Posted by: oriolesfan2323 | January 26, 2011 9:08 AM | Report abuse

qpf total for 12z nam shows 1.25-1.5" just north of dc... holy crap... what's going on w/ the NWS.

Posted by: finger11 | January 26, 2011 9:09 AM | Report abuse

I don't know what's up with the NWS either... but it'd be interesting to know their thinking.

Posted by: Snowlover2 | January 26, 2011 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Phooey! Nothing but rain at the 301 Bridge since midnight. Yuck!

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | January 26, 2011 9:14 AM | Report abuse

@OsnowO:
Kids these days, amirite?

Posted by: JDK4 | January 26, 2011 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Make sure to take an umbrella or some head/face protection, if heading outside. I was really pelted by some intense sleet. But luckily it is turning more liquid. Still, be prepared for pockets of sleet!

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | January 26, 2011 9:15 AM | Report abuse

@OsnowO:
Kids these days, amirite?

Posted by: JDK4 | January 26, 2011 9:15 AM | Report abuse

There was no active precip to speak of when I walked to the Ballston Metro this morn around 7am, but then when I got out of McPherson around 7:30am, it was sleeting. And me without a hood or umbrella. Yuck.

Posted by: rj2835a | January 26, 2011 9:16 AM | Report abuse

The 12z NAM is out and looks great!

http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/analysis/namer/nam/12/images/nam_p24_024m.gif

btw, KRUZ, where's that bust you were talking about? hmmm... ;)

Posted by: BobMiller2 | January 26, 2011 9:17 AM | Report abuse

@oriolesfan, yes. Rest of today - 1 to 3 inches. Tonight including the evening - 4 to 6 inches. So that's a total of 5 to 9 inches for Fairfax.

Posted by: Dovienya1 | January 26, 2011 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Rjmw, I think things are generally on track. Jason should be doing an update in the next hour or so though. I am not sure why NWS initially lowered totals looking at the models and radar.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 26, 2011 9:17 AM | Report abuse

@arcdfire
Good to hear. My partner likes them a whole lot, and I like their first full-length CD a lot. We will play it today, seeing as how so many of its songs were inspired by a huge Canadian ice storm in the late 90s.

Posted by: Murre | January 26, 2011 9:17 AM | Report abuse

NWS in Sterling briefly had a map up only showing 2-3 inches over Loudoun. They have since replaced the graphic with the original set of predictions.

Posted by: snowfan23 | January 26, 2011 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Starting to sleet west of Leesbirg now.

Posted by: moo1 | January 26, 2011 9:20 AM | Report abuse

give me some good news for AA County, specifically the Crofton area.

Posted by: mdicken6388 | January 26, 2011 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Nevermind, just as I posted the zone forecast it was updated. They have once again increased the snow totals.

Posted by: oriolesfan2323 | January 26, 2011 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Comments regarding the NWS lowering their forecast: Not sure of the text forecasts, but the time range shown on the experimental storm total forecast was changed to 6pm tonight. Our forecast (Annapolis) went from about 5" to 2", but only through 6pm tonight.

Posted by: annapyr | January 26, 2011 9:25 AM | Report abuse

All good 12z NAM. I think that Wes is right and that we are going to see the #s for DC bumped up. 34 and a few "things" coming down from the sky lightly near the White House.

Posted by: DullesARC | January 26, 2011 9:27 AM | Report abuse

The map with much lower snow totals was the snow map NWS posted yesterday. I'm not sure how it made it's way back to the site, but that is an OLD map. Accumulations still on track.

Posted by: 4seamed | January 26, 2011 9:27 AM | Report abuse

Now we have everything coming down here W of Leesburg!!!!
Looking like something for everyone today. But makes side roads very tricky.

Posted by: moo1 | January 26, 2011 9:28 AM | Report abuse

Since I arrived at work, in Beltsville, 45 minutes ago I have seen rain, snow and now I can hear sleet pinging off the windows. This whole weather thing is making my head spin.

Posted by: ana_b | January 26, 2011 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Wes. Do you (or anyone else) know if that 1.25 inches from the 12ZNAM would be all snow, mostly snow, or about half snow.

The six-hour period from 1-7 is when the changeover is supposed to start, so I'm wondering if some of that inch of QPF is rain

Posted by: jms12 | January 26, 2011 9:30 AM | Report abuse

OK Ian - I believe now...

Keep the updates coming!!

Posted by: Pat_E | January 26, 2011 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Snowing likc crazy in Linthicum (extreme northern AA County) after a period of rain and sleet earlier. The temperature has actually dropped 2 degrees. Weren't we supposed to be warming up a bit through the day?

Anyway, 2.5" on the ground right now and hoping against hope we make it 2.5 feet! :)

Posted by: allagar | January 26, 2011 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of snow balls, maybe watch out for a snow ball fight near the Dupont Circle fountain tonight folks

Posted by: eunicedelrosario | January 26, 2011 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Walter in Falls Church - I loved looking at your snow sculptures last year, but I didn't bookmark the page (not the smartest, over here!) Could you repost a link for me?

Posted by: tricia8 | January 26, 2011 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Where are the NWS snow totals maps?

Posted by: manassasmissy | January 26, 2011 9:36 AM | Report abuse

remember that NWS snow prediction map is EXPERIMENTAL and changes often.. don't really bother with it.

Talking about accumulations, with snows as heavy as the GFS is showing it won't matter if it's 33/34 on the surface, it will come down hard enough to stick everywhere.

Posted by: finger11 | January 26, 2011 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Wes... you are on the Ball... Sorry for busting your chops a few weeks ago. You are my go to now. Question... the radar keeps blinking- Snow, Rain, Snow, Rain over West Virginia... Looking at the soundings/ vert temp profiles, do you think the evening event will start as snow or rain? BTW- I am in Baltimore and it keeps going Snow, sleet, Drizzle, Snow, BIG Flakes, Sleet, and so on...

Posted by: jac8949 | January 26, 2011 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Who else here is ready for the snowstorm of the winter?! I know I am! I'm 98.9% convinced we'll see a decent snowfall!

Let it SNOW, let it SNOW, let it SNOOOOOOW!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7CYd5LhWNQ&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Posted by: BobMiller2 | January 26, 2011 9:40 AM | Report abuse

@eunicedelrosario
Just what I was thinking! Seems like there will be plenty of white stuff to get in some good shots at Dupont Circle Park tonight. What do you say we kick things off at 8? Planning to create an event page here: http://bit.ly/fFb1QF

Posted by: mlipin | January 26, 2011 9:46 AM | Report abuse

This is going to be the best happy hour ever!

Posted by: SusanMarie2 | January 26, 2011 9:46 AM | Report abuse

IGNORE THE NWS SNOW MAPS. Sorry bout the all caps. Just providing a PSA to you newbs. If you want a legit, UP-TO-DATE map that is actually touched by humans, just see Jason and Wes' map here on the site. Its all you need...of course, Wes is about to jump aboard and bump DC proper up a bit, right Wes?

Posted by: DullesARC | January 26, 2011 9:47 AM | Report abuse

@eunicedelrosario
Just what I was thinking! Seems like there will be plenty of white stuff to get in some good shots at Dupont Circle Park tonight. What do you say we kick things off at 8? Planning to create an event page here: http://bit.ly/fFb1QF

Posted by: mlipin | January 26, 2011 9:47 AM | Report abuse

TWC was reporting this morning that Jim Cantore is headed to Washington. We're in for a good storm tonight!

Posted by: serenefallschurch | January 26, 2011 9:48 AM | Report abuse

NWS says up to 12 inches for Jefferson County, while Accuweather is sticking with 3 point something. Big diff is they think we'll see 37 degrees today. I seriously doubt that.

Posted by: tinkerbelle | January 26, 2011 9:50 AM | Report abuse

The commute into western FFX from western PWC wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Temps were above freezing when I left the house @8AM, so the sleet was just slush on the roads and cars, and the main roads were just wet. Hit a pocket of sleet when I got off the toll road, but nothing bad - yet.

I have a feeling that the gov't will call an unscheduled/liberal leave for later this afternoon; then again, the bulk of gov't workers seem to get in at oh-dark-thirty and leave at 3pm anyway.

Posted by: jaradel | January 26, 2011 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Still snowing heavily in Baltimore...the temp here seems to have dropped below freezing and it's still laying on roads. I don't think this changeover is going to happen.

Posted by: bachaney | January 26, 2011 10:03 AM | Report abuse

This storm warrants a Jim Cantore appearance????? Really??!?

*didn't think it was gonna be THAT serious*

Posted by: Pat_E | January 26, 2011 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Normally, I jump at the chance for snow days and I love them. I got up and walked the dog, observed the rain, got the kids up and dressed for school. We went to school and there was no one there. Closed in Falls Church (FCPS) and I couldn't believe it because a)it's raining and b) there is less than one half inch of slush on the street. It's between 1/4 and 1/2 of an inch. I live at the bottom of a cul de sac, down a hill and have the wimpiest vehicle on the face of the earth and had no problem driving at all. They opened at the end of February last year when they should have stayed closed -- the school bus could not pick my child up at all -- and this is ridiculous. We could have opened for an early closing at most today.

I don't normally check the radio or internet for snow days when it's RAINING.

Posted by: elizestrada | January 26, 2011 10:10 AM | Report abuse

LOL @ elizestrada

That's what you get! News outlets have been talking about this storm for a (weather-wise) while now. Don't get mad b/c you didn't check any media at all this morning. If you've been in FC long enough you'd have known that they close when snow threats like this being thrown around. Bet you'll stay tuned next time...

Posted by: Pat_E | January 26, 2011 10:19 AM | Report abuse

tricia8,
it makes me smile that snow makes you think of my sculptures! here's the link:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/58171957@N00/

you'll see that i was able to squeeze something out of our december 16th "storm" of 1.5". should be much easier this time - if everything verifies as predicted. fingers crossed!

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 26, 2011 10:30 AM | Report abuse

anniversary - http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/chi-chicagodays-1967blizzard-story,0,1032940.story

in my twelve years attending public schools this was one of only two weather closing days.

Posted by: shadow_is_lost | January 26, 2011 10:31 AM | Report abuse

We might get a dusting - that's it. No point get excited about this one.

Posted by: wanker16 | January 26, 2011 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Abandon all hope, ye who shovel here!!!

Posted by: MartyGiles1 | January 26, 2011 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Abandon all hope, ye who shovel here!!!

Posted by: MartyGiles1 | January 26, 2011 11:08 AM | Report abuse

FROM OPM Website: Federal agencies in the Washington, DC, area are OPEN. Employees should depart 2 HOURS earlier than their normal departure time from work

Posted by: willowonyx | January 26, 2011 12:28 PM | Report abuse

I am still mystified why FCPS canceled for today, esp. considering they will likely have to cancel for tomorrow. Then we are out of snow days.
Today was a waste of a snow day - 220 PM with a clear street and I can still see the grass. Lame.

Posted by: NoVaMusicMom | January 26, 2011 2:24 PM | Report abuse

I am still mystified why FCPS canceled for today, esp. considering they will likely have to cancel for tomorrow. Then we are out of snow days.
Today was a waste of a snow day - 220 PM with a clear street and I can still see the grass. Lame.

Posted by: NoVaMusicMom | January 26, 2011 2:25 PM | Report abuse

I am still mystified why FCPS canceled for today, esp. considering they will likely have to cancel for tomorrow. Then we are out of snow days.
Today was a waste of a snow day - 220 PM with a clear street and I can still see the grass. Lame.

Posted by: NoVaMusicMom | January 26, 2011 2:26 PM | Report abuse

I am still mystified why FCPS canceled for today, esp. considering they will likely have to cancel for tomorrow. Then we are out of snow days.
Today was a waste of a snow day - 220 PM with a clear street and I can still see the grass. Lame.

Posted by: NoVaMusicMom | January 26, 2011 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Charlottesville keeps bouncing back and forth between steady snow and light snow, almost flurries. Look like most of the moisture is up north. Temps are now at 32. I agree with crozet - beginning to look like weeuns down here will miss out on the big dump.

Posted by: cvilleSnowMan | January 26, 2011 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Rain just now turned into ice pellets in southern Calvert County.

Posted by: mcmurrayl | January 26, 2011 4:58 PM | Report abuse


Husband just called. Major problems on suitland parkway. He has been in traffic out of the city for 3 hours and now the cops just closed the road and are sending everyone BACK to the city!! He left 2 hrs early like he was supposed to. :-(

Posted by: hezander | January 26, 2011 7:33 PM | Report abuse

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