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Chesapeake Bay weather for January 1: a sunny start to the new year

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

Today: Mostly sunny with a high in the mid 40s.

Tonight: Mostly clear and seasonably chilly with a low in the upper 20s.

Thursday: Becoming cloudy with afternoon rain/snow showers. High in the lower 40s.

Thursday Night: Occasional snow showers, accumulating around 1". Low in the mid 20s.

Friday: Morning flurries, then windy and colder with sunshine. Temperatures falling into the upper 10s by late afternoon.

The extended outlook calls for sunshine on Saturday with a low around 10 degrees and a high near 32. Clouds and sun on Sunday with evening rain showers. The low will be in the mid 20s and a high in the low 40s. Showers ending on Monday with a low around 35 and a high near 50.

High pressure is moving offshore today, and a southerly flow will allow temperatures to recover from the mid 20s this morning to the mid 40s this afternoon under a mostly sunny sky. Meanwhile, a weak area of low pressure will cross the Appalachian Mountains just to our southwest on Thursday. This feature will produce light rain and or rain/snow showers east of the mountains as we move into Thursday evening. The low will eventually merge with a secondary low off the Delmarva coastline, and will strengthen to produce heavy snow in the New York City area. However, this type of set-up rarely yields more than an inch or two of snow south of the Mason-Dixon line, and this is what we can expect on Thursday night. In fact, as the primary low transfers energy to the secondary low, a "dry slot" often forms that leaves part of our region with little more than snow showers or flurries. Since the first low will be too close to our region, the main shield of moisture will develop farther to the north. Behind the system, very cold air will surge into the Chesapeake region so that temperatures will actually fall into the upper 10s by Friday afternoon along with gusty winds. By Saturday morning, thermometer readings will range from zero along the Pennsylvania-Maryland border to around 10 degrees in Annapolis. This cold shot will be short-lived as temperatures are expected to recover into the lower 30s by Saturday afternoon, the mid 40s by Sunday afternoon, and near 50 by Monday. Another system may produce some rain showers on Monday, to be followed by another brief cold blast. Temperatures by next Wednesday may only reach the upper 10s during the day with overnight lows in the single digits.

On the Maryland portion of Chesapeake Bay, there are no advisories currently in effect. Winds today will come out of the south at 10 knots with waves around one foot. Winds tonight will come out of the southeast at 10 knots with waves around one foot. Winds on Thursday will come out of the north at 10 to 15 knots with gusts over 20 knots and waves from 1 to 3 feet. Visibility may be reduced in rain, snow, and fog Thursday afternoon. Winds on Thursday night will come out of the northwest at 15 to 25 knots with gusts over 40 knots and waves from 1 to 4 feet. Visibility may be reduced in snow and fog. Winds on Friday will come out of the northwest at 15 to 25 knots with gusts over 40 knots and waves from 1 to 4 feet. 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 January 1 is 42 degrees and the average low is 25 degrees. The records at Baltimore on this date are 67 degrees in 2005 and -6 degrees in 1881. Today's sunrise will occur at 7:26 and the sunset will occur at 4:54. 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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