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Chesapeake Bay weather for February 20: sunny and mild

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Brian's exclusive forecast for Baltimore, Annapolis, and northern Delmarva:

Today: Mostly sunny early, then more clouds late in the day. Mild with a high near 55.

Tonight: Cloudy with a few rain showers and areas of fog. Mild with a low around 50.

Friday: Showers and possible thunderstorms. Warm early with a temperature near 60, but falling into the 50s during the afternoon.

Friday Night: Gradual clearing and breezy with a low in the mid 30s.

Saturday: Sunny and pleasant with a high from 55 to 60, a bit cooler near the bay shore.

The extended forecast calls for a mostly sunny sky on Sunday with a low in the upper 30s and a high in the mid 50s. Clouds and sun on Monday with a low in the lower 30s and a high in the mid 40s. Clouds and sun on Tuesday with a low around 30 and a high in the upper 30s. Mostly sunny on Wednesday with a low in the upper 20s and a high in the upper 30s.

Although temperatures at sunrise this morning have dropped into the upper 20s to lower 30s, the mercury will rebound into the lower to middle 50s later this afternoon. High pressure will build over the Chesapeake Bay region today and provide the area with plenty of sunshine, mild temperatures, and additional melting of snow. The center of high pressure will move offshore tonight and be replaced by a southerly flow of air ahead of the next cold front. The mild flow will keep temperatures quite mild overnight with temperatures holding steady in the upper 40s or slowly rising toward morning. Friday's weather will feature a clash between the mild air in place and the cold front; the result will be widespread showers, possible thunderstorms, and isolated severe weather. Readings early in the day will be near 60 degrees, but then fall through the 50s during the afternoon hours. The cold front will push to our south and east, but will not make much progress. Therefore, highs on Saturday and Sunday will be in the 50s under a mostly sunny sky. The spring preview will be short-lived, however, as an arctic cold front will surge into the Middle Atlantic and New England states next week. At the same time, an area of low pressure may develop near the North Carolina coastline and bring some snow to the area by the middle of the week.

On the Maryland portion of Chesapeake Bay, a Small Craft Advisory is in effect from this evening through Friday afternoon. Winds today will come out of the southeast at 10 knots with waves around one foot. Winds tonight will come out of the south at 10 to 15 knots with gusts over 20 knots and waves from 1 to 3 feet. Visibility may be reduced in rain and fog. Winds on Friday will come out of the south at 15 to 20 knots with gusts over 25 knots, then shift to the west during the afternoon. Waves will be from 1 to 3 feet. Visibility may be reduced in rain and fog. Winds on Friday night will come out of the southwest at 10 to 15 knots with waves around one foot. Winds on Saturday will come out of the south at 10 knots with waves around one foot. Marine information is provided as general guidance. Boaters should always stay tuned to the latest forecasts and advisories from the National Weather Service.

The average high temperature for February 20 is 46 degrees and the average low is 27 degrees. The records at Baltimore on this date are 76 degrees in 1930 and 18 degrees in 1896. Today's sunrise will occur at 6:52 and the sunset will occur at 5:49. Weather data courtesy of the National Weather Service. For more weather updates, please visit my Chesapeake Bay Weather page on Facebook, and if you're heading to Ocean City feel free to check out my Ocean City MD Weather page on Facebook. You can also follow me on Twitter @chesbayweather.

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