From the ABC 7 Weather team

Live Blog: D.C. March Snowstorm

March 6, 2013 - 04:21 AM
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The biggest snow in D.C. in nearly two years and the biggest March snowstorm, possibly, since 1999.  Find out how much D.C. will get and how long will it last.


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6:50PM:  Last update of the evening.  Snow did fall in parts of the region.  Here are a few snow totals from both Maryland and Virginia.  Too much warm air in and around D.C. and east of the I-95 corridor left a lot of snow lovers disappointed. 

5:35PM:  As storm starts to wind down, what exactly happened with the busted forecast in D.C.?  Bob Ryan just posted a new blog on our weather homepage.

4:38PM: Wind advisory in effect until 11 PM for DC, Prince William, Montgomery, Stafford, Spotsylvania and points East.

4:20PM: Winter Weather Advisory now canceled for all locations with the exception of Caroline County and south. All Watches/Warnings canceled for our viewing area.


2:53pm:  Great side by side comparison showing the difference 4 miles makes with this storm.  Thanks to Adam Caskey for sharing!

2:30pm:  Winter storm warnings have been downgraded to winter weather advisory.  The storm is becoming more and more of a rain and wind event in D.C. and especially over southern MD. 

2:18pm:  Check out the waves along the Delaware beaches from the coastal storm.  Flooding a big concern along the beaches of the Eastern Shore. Latest wind gust at Rehoboth Beach was 71mph.

Wayne Wilkins

1:50pm:  Great snowman picture from Chantilly, VA - wet snow is the best for making snowmen!

Patrick Seaby - Chantilly, VA

1:40pm:  Snow still falling in Winchester where Facebook friend Mark Cappo measured 9".  Heavy wet snow combined with gusty winds means possible downed trees and power lines. 

1:30pm:  Still looking at mainly rain outside the ABC7 studio in Arlington.   Travel a little farther west and snow totals grow quickly!  Latest snow totals from Sterling NWS.

12:45pm:  Updated snow totals reflect the slow transition to all snow in the D.C. metro area.  Colder air will spill in over the next few hours and everyone will transition to snow, as the storm system moves farther out of the region.  Because the rain/snow mix is lingering in the metro area, snow totals are a bit lower.  West of Washington still looks on point to receive the highest snow totals.

12:11pm: A Winter Weather Advisory replaces the Winter Storm Warning in Calvert and St. Mary's Counties in Southern Maryland. The National Weather Service continues the Winter Storm Warning for the metro area until 3AM but late trends and movement of the storm indicate most of the snow (and rain S&E) will be pretty much over by this evening.

11:42am: Heaviest snowfall totals...

Rocky Bar, VA (Rockingham County):  17.8"

Massanutten, VA (Rockingham County):  17"

Charlottesville, VA (Albermarle County): 15.5"

City of Waynesboro, VA:  12.2"

11:32am: Wind gusts are starting to increase across the D.C. area. On the Eastern Shore in Easton, MD, a local storm report showed a tree fell on a house there. Here are the current local wind gusts. The highest gust I've seen so far is 61 mph from a buoy by Lewes, DE.

11am Wind Gusts

11:18am: It's crazy how location dependant the snow is as in Rosslyn, VA (At ABC 7 Studios right by the Key Bridge) there is currently nothing, but 4 miles away near Ballston in Arlington, there are a couple inches of snow. Looking at traffic cameras, we have also seen snow in NW D.C. in terrain that is only a few hundred feet higher. It's that one to two hundred feet of atmosphere that is currently the difference between rain and snow.

10:38am: There is still a very sharp gradient between snow and rain across the D.C. Metro. Currently, I've seen reports of snow in Vienna and even north Arlington, whereas it is raining in Rosslyn and the District itself. Surface temperatures here are still in the mid 30s, sitting at 36 at Reagan National.

This will not allow for any kind of accumulations unless the colder air finally makes it far enough east and accumulations are heavy enough. Snowfall totals east of D.C. may be well below where they were originally forecast. It appears totals just west of D.C. will be close to the forecast amount though as it has remained snow through the duration.

10:10am: Another great picture from Ashburn, VA (more west of D.C.!) from Erin Reidy.

9:57am: Wet snow continues to fall in the D.C. Metro, but at least in Arlington it hasn't been heavy enough to overcome the wet roads and wet grounds.

9:17am: More pictures keep rolling in to the Stormwatch 7 Facebook page. Keep them coming!

Courtesy: Kelly Gaitten in Hamilton, VA

8:55am: Here are some of the latest snowfall totals for the area.

Frederick, MD:  4.3"      Columbia, MD:  1.6"      Germantown, MD: 2.6"

Waynesboro, VA:  12.2"      Harrisonburg, VA:  9.2"      Winchester, VA: 8"

Culpeper, VA:  5.8"      Burke, VA:  1.8"      Ashburn, VA:  3.3"

8:41am: Heavy snow has now moved into the majority of the D.C. Metro with some rates of 1-2" per hours in the heaviest bands. Here's a live look at the Capitol this morning in this streaming camera.

8:07am: Current trends are showing rain now changing back to snow in the D.C. Metro but it's still hanging on as rain east of D.C. As the low continues to push east and intensify, more cold air will be brought into the system and snow will become the primary form of precipitation.

Current "rough depiction" of the Rain/Snow line

7:29am: Jefferson, MD has snow this morning as well as some hungry birds at the feeder! Thanks to Patti Carbaugh! She has seen about 6 inches so far with more coming down.

7:18am: Here are some of the latest snowfall totals for the region. Snow is extremely wet and heavy west of D.C., but in the city and east, roads and grounds are mainly wet with a lot of rain mixed in thus far.

7:13am: Here's a great picture from Mark Cappo this morning in Winchester, VA. I just had another picture of a ruler taken by Mark showing just over 7 inches so far.

Snow in Winchester, VA

6:55am: A fair amount of rain has mixed in and now taken over through much of the immediate D.C. Metro and even points west of D.C. as well. As the low moves off the east coast we are expecting precipitation to change back over to snow over the next couple of hours.

5:57am: Many of you want to know when the snow looks to exit the D.C. area. Here's a look at one of the models (NCEP Rapid Refresh) showing a finish time after sunset closer to 9pm in the D.C. area (earlier to the west).

(Credit: WeatherBell Models)

5:39am: This isn't expected to be the heaviest snow storm in March for the D.C. area but it may be close to the top ten. Be sure to check out Lauryn Ricketts blog on some of the top snowstorms in March.

Top March Snowstorms

5:21am: Here's a picture from Culpeper, VA at 3am this morning with the roads covered and snow coming down heavy from Kelly Stepp.

Courtesy Kelly Stepp

5:09am: Here's a picture out our window in Arlington of the snow plows lined up at a stoplight, though as you can see the roads are just wet at this point.

4:52am: Here is a picture from Dumfries, VA sent to us by Susan Billings through our Facebook page.

Dumfries early this morning (Susan Billings)

4:15am: Snow is coming down through the majority of the D.C. area this morning with exception of right along the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay and Southern Maryland where rain is falling. Please send us any reports (preferably measured by a ruler if you have one!) and pictures to us on our Stormwatch 7 Facebook Page, our twitter accounts listed above, or

Doppler as of 4:10am

1:48am:  Snow coming down pretty good in parts of the region.  Here's a picture from north Bethesda of snow covered grass and cars.  Roads are just wet, but a little slick.

1:00am:  Road temperatures remain slightly above freezing, for now.  Snow will stick to the grass first and then will eventually start to the stick to the roadways, especially bridges, overpasses, and side streets next.  Here's a great site to monitor road temperatures.

12:50am:  Here's the latest water vapor image.  This gives you an idea of the energy that's helping to develop this major coastal storm.  I've circled the area of interest.  The pink represents colder cloud tops and precipitation, where as the orange indicates drier air.  The dynamics between the two generates a cyclonic spin in the atmosphere, which will further develop the low off the VA coast.  What does that mean for us?  A big snow storm.  Enough cold air for heavy snow and strong winds.


12:41 am:  A winter storm warning is in effect for the entire viewing area through 3am Thursday.  Heavy snow is expected across the region with strong winds through late Wednesday night.

12:12am:  Precipitation filling in on radar across much of the metro area.  Looking outside the studio in Arlington, just light rain.  Numerous reports of heavy snow farther west into Winchester and Front Royal.  Snow reported near Potomac, MD from ABC7 reporter Tom Roussey. 

2013 March Snowstorm - Live Blog

It starts now with continuous updates on the mid-Atlantic snow storm.  The most up-to-date snow totals, updated warnings, pictures, and all other relavent information to this potentially historic March snow. 

Follow along and send us updates from where you are!  It's extremely helpful to hear from you and what conditions are like in your neighborhood.  Send us your pictures and weather updates to our Stormwatch7 Facebook page.  Also, check out our WeatherBug roof cameras across the viewing area. 

On Twitter?  These are the people to follow!

Stormwatch 7  Doug Hill  Bob Ryan  Jacqui Jeras  Adam Caskey  Brian van de Graaff  Steve Rudin  Devon Lucie  Alex Liggitt  Eileen Whelan  Lauryn Ricketts 

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