Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Afternoon update

By 3:00, the cold front had moved through the metro DC area, bringing with it mainly light showers, followed by increasing northwesterly winds and dropping temperatures. National was 62 at 1pm, but dropped to 51 in the next hour. Winds at 25 mph were gusting to 32. Winds were gusting as high as 37 mph at Ft. Belvoir and 38 at Andrews. In western Maryland, temperatures were already 32 in Oakland and 46 in Hagerstown by 1pm and they remained at that level at 3:00. Here in MoCo outside the Beltway, I can see breaks in the clouds to the north and west with a temperature of 46 after a high of 63.

Despite the emergence of the sun, temperatures will continue to drop through the remainder of the day and tonight, reaching the low 30's or upper 20's by tomorrow morning, reminding us that winter is not yet over.

Yesterday was the anniversary of the 13" snowfall of 1958 in Washington, and today is the anniversary of the Presidents' Day snowstorm of 2003, also 13". After Saturday's date (the 19th), however, Washington has never observed more than 10" of snowfall on a single day, except for 11.5" on March 29, 1942.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Afternoon Update

What a wonderful spring-like day for my first official afternoon update! After a gloomy morning (and perhaps some gloom about the success of some max temperature forecasts!), the mid-February sun has warmed the air up very nicely. Driving home from some errands, I had to turn off the heat, take my jacket off, open the windows, and turn some Van Morrison up loud on the CD player. Here on the Greater Potomac weather patio, the temperature is 63.5 in the shade of the picnic table. Temperatures around the DC area are mostly in the low-to-mid 60's, with National at 60 and Dulles at 62. The warm spot in Northern Virginia is a sunny 70 at Fredericksburg. In Maryland, Baltimore is 61, but a SE breeze is keeping Annapolis at 47. Ocean and bay breezes are also keeping Patuxent River and Ocean City at 52, despite partly-sunny to sunny skies. For some more thoughts on the effect of the sun on our weather, see my previous extended comment.

As Josh mentioned earlier, we can expect a strong cold front to bring temperatures back to more seasonable levels by late tomorrow.

Seasonal Outlook

Latest seasonal forecast: Click here.

Latest 3-month temperature outlook from Climate Prediction Center/NWS/NOAA.