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20 Apr 2014
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D.C. area forecast: From summer today to winter late Tuesday; even snow?
April 14 at 5:00 am
Today’s Daily Digit
A somewhat subjective rating of the day’s weather, on a scale of 1 to 10.
7Cloudy and breezy, but the warmth feels wonderful.
Express Forecast
Today: Mostly cloudy,  breezy. Highs: 75-80.
Tonight: Showers likely late, possible thunder. Lows: 60-65.
Tomorrow: Rain, turning colder. Falling temps from 70 into 40s late.
FORECAST IN DETAIL
Temperature Map
Temperatures: Latest D.C. area temperature map. See interactive map on our Weather Wall.
If you thought we’d turned the corner and the summer-like weather was here to stay, think again. Between late afternoon Monday and Tuesday, we’ll go from temperatures near 80 to the 40s.  Tuesday afternoon’s cold rain could even transition to mixed precipitation before ending  at night.  Many parts of the area see temperatures drop below freezing early Wednesday morning and some then struggle to escape the 40s Wednesday afternoon.
A modest recovery in temperatures is in the works Thursday and Friday.  Saturday may be on the wet side before a good-looking Sunday.
Today (Monday): This is the warmest day of the week.  Although skies are mostly cloudy for the majority of the day, a steady breeze from the south at 10-20 mph, gusting over 25 mph at times, draws in warm air. Highs range from the mid-70s to around 80 – depending on the amounts of sun that sneaks through. Confidence: Medium-High
Tonight: Following a pleasantly balmy and dry evening, rain showers and even the rumble of thunder are possible (40 percent chance east of I-95, 50 percent chance along I-95, and 60 percent chance west) after midnight, and especially towards dawn.  The warm flow of air from the south (at 15 mph gusting over 20 mph at times)  holds temperatures high, with lows only from near 60 to the mid-60s downtown. Confidence: Medium-High
For related traffic news, check out Dr. Gridlock. Keep reading for the forecast through the weekend…
Tomorrow (Tuesday): Prepare yourself for multiple seasons in the same day. Showers and possibly thundershowers are likely in the morning before transitioning into more of a steady and ultimately cold rain in the afternoon, which may be heavy at times.  Morning temperatures – as high as 70 or so – steadily fall during the late morning and afternoon hours into the 40s by 5 or 6 p.m. Winds, initially from the south, shift to out of the northwest, at around 15 mph.  Rainfall amounts average around 1 inch. Confidence: Medium-High
Snow Potential Index
A daily assessment of the potential for at least ~1″ of snow in the next week, on a 0-10 scale. More info
1 (↑) Outside chance rain Tues ends as snow/mix at night. Strong spring front coming thru.
Tomorrow night: Here’s the part of the forecast sure to shock some people.  Temperatures continue to fall through the 40s during the evening, into the 30s by around dark in some of our colder suburbs and closer to 10 or 11 p.m. inside the Beltway.  This may allow rain – if it lingers long enough – to mix with and change to sleet and/or snow before ending (20-30 percent chance, highest western areas).  As usual, the best chance of any wintry precipitation is in our colder suburbs to the northwest.  Little or no accumulation is expected and it’s completely possible the rain shuts off before it’s cold enough for frozen precipitation. But the fact we’re talking about wintry precipitation on April 15 is notable (though maybe not all that surprising after this winter).
GFS model simulates some snow over the region between around 10 p.m. and 1 a.m. Tuesday night (WeatherBell.com)
After precipitation ends – in most areas by midnight or just a little after- skies gradually clear, but it’s unseasonably cold.  Lows range from the upper 20s in some of our colder suburbs to the lows 30s most other locations.  It’s windy too, with northwest winds at 10-20 mph, gusting to 25 mph, dropping wind chills down to near 20 by early morning.  Confidence: Medium
A LOOK AHEAD
It feels more like February 16 than April 16 on Wednesday. The sunshine is deceptive, as highs struggle to reach 50 in our colder suburbs and probably just barely edge into the low 50s elsewhere.  Winds from the northwest at 10-15 mph in the morning gradually ease in the afternoon, taking some the edge off the chill.  Clear, calm, but cold Wednesday night, with lows in the upper 20s and low 30s in our colder suburbs to the upper 30s to near 40 downtown. Confidence: Medium-High
Chilly high pressure parked to the north Thursday and Friday delivers calm, but slightly cooler than normal weather.  Highs both days are in the mid-50s to around 60 under partly to mostly sunny skies and light winds from the east and northeast.  Thursday night is chilly, with lows in the mid-30s in our colder suburbs to low 40s downtown. Confidence: Medium
Clouds increase Friday night when rain showers may develop, which may well last into a good part of Saturday.  The coverage and intensity of the rain is still in question, so stay tuned for possible updates.  Lows Friday night are in the 40s, with highs Saturday around 60.  Confidence: Low-Medium
Clearing is a decent bet by late Saturday night, with lows in the 40s, paving the way for a pleasant Sunday when highs should be in the mid-to-upper 60s, under partly sunny skies. Confidence: Medium
Jason Samenow is the Capital Weather Gang's chief meteorologist and serves as the Washington Post's Weather Editor. He earned BA and MS degrees in atmospheric science from the University of Virginia and University of Wisconsin-Madison.
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Winter 2013-2014
Snowfall total to date
30-yr average: 15.4"
Record most: 56.1" (2009-10)
Record least: 0.1" (1997-98 & 1972-73)
Winter Forecast 2013-14