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Chesapeake Bay weather for February 27: evening update

National Weather Service forecast map
National Weather Service forecast map
Map courtesy National Weather Service

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

Tonight: Clear and very cold with a low from 12 to 17.

Friday: Mostly sunny and very cold with a high around 25.

Friday Night: Variable cloudiness with a low in the upper 10s to around 20.

Saturday: Variable cloudiness with snow showers possible. The high will be near 40.

The extended forecast calls for a chance of rain on Sunday with a low in the lower 30s and a high in the upper 30s. A chance of rain changing to sleet or snow on Monday with a low in the lower 30s and a high in the mid 30s. Mostly sunny and cold on Tuesday with a low in the mid 20s and a high in the upper 20s. Mostly sunny and very cold on Wednesday with a low in the mid 10s and a high in the lower 30s.

A fresh surge of arctic air is sending temperatures tumbling this evening into the 20s after daytime highs near 40. A dry cold front swept across the bay this afternoon and ushered in the colder air. By Friday morning, temperatures will bottom out in the single digits across northern Maryland to the mid 10s in the Annapolis area. During the day on Friday we can expect highs to only reach the mid 20s, nearly 25 degrees colder than average! The cold snap will be brief with Saturday's highs climbing back into the 30s. An upper-level disturbance is expected to move through the region on Saturday with scattered snow showers. Later in the weekend, two main weather features will set the stage for a nasty winter storm that will impact Maryland on Sunday and Monday. The system will not feature a strong center of low pressure, like a nor'easter, but rather an area of intense convergence caused by two air masses pressing into one another. Warm, subtropical air to the south will battle the Polar Vortex to the north. The area of convergence between the warm air to our south and the arctic air to the north will be the track upon which an area of low pressure will develop Sunday into Monday. Areas to the north of the convergence zone will experience a moderate to heavy snow event, with areas to the south receiving a soaking rain. In the middle, a wide range of precipitation types is expected including rain, sleet, snow, and even freezing rain. A significant period of icy conditions can be expected in this zone. At the moment, central Maryland looks to be in the convergence zone with mixed precipitation and potentially icy conditions developing by Sunday night and Monday morning. As the low shifts to the coast, colder air drawn into the system may change all precipitation to snow from Annapolis to the north and west. An accumulation of snow is certainly possible, but not guaranteed, by Monday evening in central Maryland. This complex weather system will need to be monitored, for a shift of twenty or thirty miles will have a significant impact on our local weather. The temperature gradient on either side of the convergence zone will be stark with sub-freezing temperatures and snow only one hundred miles from temperatures in the 40s and 50s with rain.

On the Maryland portion of Chesapeake Bay, a Gale Warning is in effect until 11 p.m. this evening. A Small Craft Advisory is in effect from 6 p.m. this evening through Friday morning. Winds today will come out of the southwest at 10 to 20 knots with gusts over 30 knots, becoming west at 10 to 20 knots with gusts over 30 knots and waves from 1 to 4 feet. Winds tonight will come out of the northwest at 10 to 20 knots with gusts over 30 knots, diminishing to 20 knots after midnight. Waves will be from 1 to 5 feet, subsiding to 1 to 3 feet late. Winds on Friday will come out of the north at 10 to 20 knots, shifting to the northeast at 10 knots during the afternoon. 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 27 is 48 degrees and the average low is 29 degrees. The records at Baltimore on this date are 76 degrees in 1997, and 20 degrees in 1934. Today's sunrise will occur at 6:42 and the sunset will occur at 5:57. 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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