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The Chill is Back on...But for How Long?

Josh Larson @ 12:00 AM

After three days of temperatures in the upper 60s to low 70s, a cold front will press through this morning, giving way to sharply cooler temperatures -- some 20 degrees lower than yesterday. It looks like chilly weather will stick around through the weekend as well. Thereafter, however, there are indications that we may see a return to near- to above-normal temperatures for much of next week.

Pictured: Fall foliage in Adams Morgan yesterday; by photographer Ian Livingston.


Forecast Confidence: HighBreezy & much cooler. Expect overcast skies to start the day, with scattered showers in some spots during the morning hours. By noon we will be seeing breezy NW winds 10-25mph and some partial clearing. By late afternoon, we'll see a blend of clouds and sun with highs only in the low to mid 50s amidst continued blustery conditions. Diminishing winds tonight, with lows from 30-36 in most spots.


Forecast Confidence: Medium-HighQuite crisp. Despite the abundant sunshine we'll see during the day Friday, due to strong northwesterly flow aloft, we'll look for chilly highs only near 50 in most spots. Clear and very cold Friday night, in what will be the coolest night of the fall thus far: expect lows to range from 24 across the coolest suburbs to near 32 downtown.

The Weekend

Forecast Confidence: High-Very HighPlenty of sun, chill. We'll have continued cooler than normal temperatures over the weekend along with slightly more in the way of cloud cover. Expect partly to mostly sunny skies Saturday with highs again near 50 and overnight lows from the upper 20s to the mid 30s downtown. Sunday will feature only partial sunshine, with highs in the low 50s and overnight lows in the 30s in most spots.


Pattern Overview
The prevalence of below normal temperatures so far this fall has been quite remarkable; indeed, it has made the past three days' of temperatures in the upper 60s to mid 70s all the more noticeable. Over the next 5 days we'll see the effects of yet another trough over the Great Lakes & Northeast, allowing for chilly NW flow aloft over our area. However, most modeling suggests that by the start of next week this pattern may begin to break down and give way to above normal temperatures over the eastern US, courtesy increased southwesterly flow.

Above: the GFS' representation of cold air (at 850mb) beginning to pull away from the area, courtesy increased southwesterly flow.

Next week's forecast
Forecast highs/lows: 63/47 (normal = 60/42)
Forecast precip: Near normal

Forecast Confidence: High-Very HighExpect mostly sunny skies on Monday with milder highs near 60 and overnight lows from the upper 30s to mid 40s. Tuesday will feature increasing clouds with a slight chance of a stray shower and highs in the lower 60s with overnight lows predominately in the 40s. Wednesday and Thursday will feature partly to mostly sunny skies with milder temperatures in the mid 60s for highs (perhaps even pushing 70 in some spots?), with overnight lows in the mid to upper 40s. Models suggest the potential for increasing clouds on Friday with a slight chance of showers developing; highs will likely be in the mid 60s with lows near 50.

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