From the ABC 7 Weather team

Archive for September 2013

Hurricane Isabel: 11 years later

September 19, 2014 - 05:00 AM
Isabel made landfall along the Mid-Atlantic on Sept. 18, 2003. Photo: NOAA

Many of us remember enduring days - some weeks - without power. Flooding and downed trees and power lines were just some of the hardships faced after Isabel slammed into the East Coast on Sept. 18, 2004.


Hurricane Isabel has gone into the record books as one of the most significant tropical cyclones to affect the Chesapeake Bay area since Hurricane Hazel in 1954 and the Chesapeake-Potomac hurricane of 1933.  Here are a images of Isabel's impact in our area.

Isabel Damage
Isabel Damage
Isabel Damage in Calvert County, MD

Isabel was the ninth named storm of the 2003 Atlantic hurricane season. It originated about 625 miles west of the Cape Verde Islands on Sept. 6, 2003. The storm tracked westward, gaining intensity and, at one point, reached Category 5 status with maximum estimated sustained winds around 165 mph. Check out Isabel's track:


By the time Isabel made landfall near Drum Point, N.C. around midday Sept. 18, it was still a Category 2 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 105 mph.

Isabel then tracked north-northwest, losing tropical characteristics, but still producing flooding rain and tropical storm force winds. Here's an image of the radar, as the center of Isabel tracked over North Carolina.

Wakefield, VA NWS

The copious amounts of rain, coupled with strong winds, tore down trees and power lines and even led to a few fatalities.

Locally, the Shenandoah Valley received 6-12 inches of rain. Between two and six inches of rain fell in western Maryland and eastern West Virginia, and the Baltimore/Washington region received a total of one to three inches of rain.

At the height of the storm, Reagan National recorded a wind gust of 50 mph.


Unusually high storm surge accompanied the storm with some watersheds between six and feet above normal. The storm surge in the Chesapeake Bay and Potomac River reached the highest levels since the Chesapeake/Potomac hurricane of 1933.


From emergency management reports, estimates of about 6 million customers lost power at some point during the storm in North Carolina, Virginia, Delaware, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.

The estimated total economic loss from Isabel was about $5 billion, according to the American Reinsurance Group. With so many people affected by the tropical cyclone, it took a long while to fully recover.

Even with the advanced warning of the hurricane, thousands of people were impacted by Isabel.

Further information about Isabel is available from the National Hurricane Center, National Centers for Environmental Prediction, United States Geological Survey and the National Weather Service.

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NFL Forecasts for Sunday Football!!

September 27, 2013 - 11:32 AM

Looking great for most games around the United States for Sunday football


1:00 PM (ET) Games:

Baltimore at Buffalo: Ralph Wilson Stadium, Buffalo, NY: Temperatures right at 70 degrees with increasing clouds. Dry and pleasant for the duration of the game. Keeping everything dry for now but will have to watch the timing of an approaching frontal system. Partly sunny skies with a light Southwest wind.


New York Giants at Kansas City: Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, MO: No wind and plenty of sunshine! Temperatures almost perfect with little humidity: lower 70s to start the game moving into the upper 70s by the 4th quarter.

Seattle at Houston: Houston Football Stadium, Houston, TX: A little on the warm side and a little humid. Partly sunny to mostly cloudy skies as clouds increase during the game. Temperatures in the mid 80s at 1st quarter increasing to around 90 by the 4th quarter.

4:00 o'clock games

Washington at OaklandOakland-Alameda County Coliseum, Oakland, CA:  Mostly sunny with temperatures right around 70 degree through the duration of the game. Dry with winds out of the WSW at 5 mph.

Dallas at San Diego: Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego, CA: Another great day, but it IS Southern California. Temperatures in the mid 70s with all sunshine during the game! Enjoy!



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Fall Foliage 2013 in the Washington D.C. area

September 27, 2013 - 04:15 AM
(Photo courtesy Erik Ruediger)

Email us your photos so we can share them!

Please let us know your name and where the picture was taken. Thanks!

If you have already been seeing some color peeking out in recent weeks, you're not alone. Fall colors really begin to show in the month of October, with the peak occurring as soon as early October in the Mountains, and mid to late October closer to the D.C. Metro area. Two pictures below already show the big difference in color between the local area (Vienna, Westwood CC - Middle Picture) and the Northeast (New Hampshire - Bottom Picture).

Average Peak Fall Color in D.C.

The reason leaves change color is because of the colder days and approaching winter. As daylight gets shorter and temperatures start to drop, the leaves recoup nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorous. It's the chlorophyll in the leaves that give them their green color through the growing season. Chlorophyll is an essential compound for photosynthesis, which is a process that converts sunlight to carbohydrates.

Be sure to check all of our HD cams often over the next few weeks!

Taken by James Joslyn in Vienna at Westwood Country Club

Leaves are also made up of carotenoids. Carotenoids produce yellow, brown, and orange colors. They are always present in the leaves, but you only start to see them when the chlorophyll process stops. The chlorophyll process stops when temperatures start to drop, which is when the carotenoid colors are revealed.

Taken by Erik Ruediger at the Edward MacDowell Reservoir in New Hampshire

Wondering where the red and purple hues come from? These colors are the anthocyanins, which are a bit less understood by tree scientists. Some scientists are suggesting, though, that because of the moderate drought there are increased concentrations of these anthocyanins in the leaves, which will lead to some very vibrant hues of reds and purples in the leaves.

Want to learn how to photograph fall foliage? Here is a great blog by the Digital Photography School on exactly what you need to do.

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College Football Weather Forecasts!

September 25, 2013 - 12:33 PM

Thursday Night

Virginia Tech at Georgia Tech:Bobby Dodd Stadium, Atlanta, GA 7:30PM: Temperatures will be right around that 70 degree mark at the beginning of the game dropping to hte mid 60s by the 4th quarter. Just a touch of humidity but partly cloudy skies. Winds easterly around 5 mph. Sunset at 7:29 PM

Iowa State at Tulsa: Skelly Field, Tulsa, OK 6:30 (CT) - Warm to start the game with temperatures holding in the mid 80s. Only dropping to the comfortable mid 70s by the end of the game with sunny skies to start and a clear night to finish. SSE winds consistent at 10 mph. Sunset at 7:16PM.


Friday Night

Utah State at San Jose State: SJSU Spartan Stadium, San Jose, CA 6:00 (PT): Very nice evening for football! Clear skies with the sun setting at 6:58 PM. NNW winds at 10 mph with temperatures in the mid 70s to start and dropping into the mid-60s during the game.

Middle Tennessee at BYU: LaVell Edwards Stadium, Provo, UT 7:00 (MT): Pretty chilly with temperatures around 50 for the start of the game, falling to the lower 40s by the 4th quarter! Bundle up! Sunset at 7:17 PM with a light northeast wind. Clear skies through and through.



#11 Oklahoma State at WVU: Mountaineer Stadium, Morgantown, WV 12:00PM: Temperatures in the upper 60s to start the game after a cool start. Plenty of sunshine with temperatures moving into the mid 70s by the 4th quarter. Winds SE 3 - 5 mph and BEAUITFUL!

#12 South Carolina at UCF: Bright House Networks Stadium, Orlando, FL - 12:00PM: A little on the breezy side with winds out of the North 10-20 mph. Temperatures right around 85 degrees with sunshine.

#15 Miami at South Florida: Raymond James Stadium-Tampa, FL 12:00PM: It will be warm (go figure) with the heat index feeling right around 90 degrees. Temperatures to start the game will be in the lower 80s and move to the upper 80s during the duration of the game. Plenty of sunshine with just a slight chance of some passing storms in the afternoon.

UVA at Pittsburgh: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, 12:30PM: A light SE wind at 5 mph with bring temperatures through 70 at kickoff to the mid 0s by the 4th quarter. Mostly sunny for the game and just gorgeous!

William & Mary at Villanova: Villanova Stadium, Villanova, PA 1:00PM: Plenty of sunshine with temperatures right around the 70 degree mark through the duration of the game. Very quiet weather-wise. Light Southeast wind.

Navy at Western Kentucky: LT Smith Stadium, Bowling Green KY, 1:00 PM (CT): Slightly humid with mostly sunny conditions. A Southwest wind at 5 - 10 mph and temperatures continue in the low 80 through the game.

Wake Forest at #3 Clemson: Memorial Stadium, Clemson, SC 3:30PM: Not that humid surprisingly! Temperatures in the mid 70s for kickoff only dropping to the upper 60s by the 4th quarter. NE winds at 5 - 10 mph with plenty of sunshine!

#6 LSU at #9 Georgia: Sanford Stadium, Athens, GA 3:30PM: Temperatures remain in the 70s through the game-starting in the upper 70s and dropping to the lower 70s by the 4th quarter. Light winds with sunshine!

#8 Florida State at Boston College: Alumni Stadium, Chesnut Hill, MA 3:30PM: Again, same story with dry conditions and plenty of sunshine! Temperatures right around 70 degrees to start and falling into the upper 60s with a few clouds around. SE winds at 5 - 10 mph.

Army at Louisiana Tech: Joe Aillet Stadium, Ruston, LA 3:00PM (CT): A touch of humidity with temperatures at kickoff right around the upper 80s. Temps will fall to around 80 degrees by the game's end with clear skies.

#21 Old Miss at #1 Alabama: Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, AL 5:30 PM (CT): Sunset at 6:40 PM but clear skies all through the day! Kickoff temperature will be right around the mid 70s falling to the mid 60s by the game's end. Light winds.

#20 Florida at Kentucky: Commonwealth Stadium, Lexington, KY 7:00PM: Slightly humid and temperatures falling fast with clear skies. Sunset at 7:27 PM. A few clouds will build in through the duration of the game, however temperatures will fall from 80 at kickoff to around 68 by the end of the game.

JMU at Delaware: Delaware Stadium, Newark, DE 7:30PM: Sunset at 6:52 PM and a beautiful evening it will be after a gorgeous day! Temperatures, cool at start checking in at the 65 degree mark at at the 1st half and cooling to the upper 50s by the 4th quarter. An easterly wind will bring some clouds into the region.

#23 Wisconsin at #4 Ohio State: Columbus, OH, THE SHOE, 8:00PM: A great evening at The Horseshoe. Kickoff temps in the low 70s dropping to the mid 60s by the end of the game. Sunset at 7:21 with mostly clear skies and light winds!






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Sunrise Special -- September Style!

September 25, 2013 - 09:48 AM

Looking at the early morning satellite, I had a feeling we'd be in for a colorful sunrise.  A disturbance off to the south had ushered in some mid and high level clouds.  It was a perfect recipe for a brilliant sunrise. 

Steve Chenevey - Washington, D.C.

To see all the colors of the rainbow, watch the video time lapse below.  Notice how quickly the colors change, as the sun angle gets higher.

The reason we enjoy such colorful sunrises is because the sunlight scatters through the lowest layer of the atmosphere. 

During sunrise and sunset, sunlight has to take a longer path through the atmosphere due to the low sun angle.  During this process, molecules scatter the blue and violet light away from our eyes revealing many other colors of the rainbow. 

When mid and high clouds are added to the mix, the sunlight is scattered and reflected more, which aids in the deep red and orange hues visible during these times. 

Since the sun angle is much lower in the fall and winter, sunrises and sunsets are even more brilliant.  This morning was a perfect example of everything coming together.  Check out these incredible images taken by our StormWatch7 Facebook and Twitter friends.  Thanks to everyone for sharing!

Kelly Spore - Frederick, MD
Michelle Barnhill - Deale, MD
Donna Davis - Culpepr, VA


Brianne Carter - Washington, D.C.
Alex Liggitt - Fairfax, VA
Rachel Salerno - Washington, D.C.
Paul Bianco - Annapolis, MD

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Dwindling daylight in D.C.

September 24, 2013 - 03:30 AM

It's that time of year when you notice the sun rising later and later, and before you know it, you'll need your headlights on at 6pm. Here's a brief breakdown of the amount of daylight in Washington and how much it's changing.

Today in Washington there is 12hr 4min of daylight, but we lose 1hr and 14min over the next 30 days alone. Basically, we add two and a half minutes of darkness every day between now and October 24th. Thursday (the 26th) will be the first time D.C. has had under 12 hours of daylight since March 16th. See the chart here.

Our daylight hits rock bottom around the winter solstice with only 9hr 26min of daylight then. It may feel dark that time of year, but it's nothing like Anchorage, Alaska where they have an annual low of only 5hr 28min of daylight.

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Monday had the coolest high temperature in D.C. since May 25th

September 23, 2013 - 05:34 PM

Temperatures Monday reached 69°F at Reagan National Airport. This is the coolest the high temperature has been since May 25th earlier this year when it hit 68°F for the high. This isn't extremely cold, but is unseasonably cool with the average high now at 77°F.

Oddly enough, the last time low temperatures were in the 40s at Reagan National also occurred on May 25th, and there is an outside chance it could happen tomorrow morning, but at this time we think it will be closer to 50°F-53°F at Reagan National tomorrow morning.

This week actually features a very quiet weather pattern with one area of low pressure south of D.C. during the Wednesday-Thursday time period possibly bringing a few clouds, but no precipitation is expected through this weekend.

Even with the heavy rain this weekend that totaled around an inch in some areas, Reagan National is still down 1.5" for the month of September and 3" over the past two months as far as average precipitation is concerned.


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NFL Weather Forecasts from around the league!

September 22, 2013 - 07:22 AM

Lots of rain for area games yesterday! What can we expect with Sunday football?

1:00 PM Games

Detroit at Washington: A very nice day (compared to a rainy Saturday). Mostly sunny skies with temperatures staying put through the game in the lower 70s. It will be slightly breezy though, winds at 10 - 15 mph won't calm until the evening hours.

Houston at Baltimore: Another perfect day  for football (minus the game WVU/UMD at M&T Stadium yesterday). Temperatures in the mid 70s through the duration of the game with mostly sunny skies. Again, watching that wind out of the northwest at 9-13 mph.

NY Giants at Carolina: Breezy earl and then the wind will settle after kickoff at Bank of American Stadium. Temperatures hold steady in the mid 70s with mostly sunny skies. Humidity will be kept at bay with a northerly wind 5 - 10 mph.

Green Bay at Cincinnati: Great day with temperatures steady through the mid 65s during the duration of the game. Plenty of sunshine to work with with a nice North wind at 5 -10 mph.

Cleveland at Minnesota: After a chilly start with frost advisories in place around Minnesota, it will warm up to a nice 63 degrees. Temperatures will stay in the mid 60s throughout the game however, it will feel much colder with the wind. Very wind with a Southeast wind at 10 - 20 mph and gusts up to 30 mph! Make sure you tie those tailgating tents down well! Plenty of sunshine though!

4:25 PM Games (ET)

Atalanta at Miami: Of course it is going to be warm. With the heat and humidity combined, feeling like 98 degrees through the game with air temperatures around the 90 degree mark throughout the game. A slight chance of an afternoon storm. Other than that, increasing clouds and winds S 10 - 15 mph.

Indianapolis at San Francisco: Calm winds to start at Candlestick Park but winds will increase out of the West to 10 mph after kickoff. Temperatures still right around the 70 degree mark with sunny skies.

8:30 PM (ET)

Chicago at Pittsburgh: A clear and cool night at Heinz Field with temperatures falling from 57 at kickoff to 52 by the end of the game. North winds at 5 - 10 mph.



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NCAA College Football Weather Forecasts

September 20, 2013 - 03:08 PM

College Football Game Weather Forecasts for around the NCAA!


Friday 9:00 PM

Boise State @ Fresno State: 6:00(PT) at Bulldog Stadium: Sunset at 7:02PM with cooling conditions! Nice start to the game with temperatures in the mid 80s at kickoff falling to around 70 degrees by the 4th quarter. Mostly sunny to start and then clear and starry night!



Florida A&M at Ohio State (#4): The SHOE-Noon: Rain (heavy at times) early in the morning will decrease as the game goes on. Obviously starting out with overcast skies but will begin to clear starting in the 4th quarter. So expecting rain at kickoff with temperatures right around 70 degrees. NW winds slightly breezy from 6 - 12 mph.

Marshall at Virginia Tech: Lane Stadium-Noon: Widespread heavy rain through the day. Could see some thunderstorms but they will be very isolated. Tailgating may be dry but rain chances increase after noon. Temperatures hold in the mid 60s through the game.

Florida International at (#7) Louisville: Papa John Cardinal Stadium- Noon: Clearing and cooler! Some rain in the morning will give way to partly cloudy conditions towards the middle and end of the game. Temperatures around 70 at kickoff only rise into the mid 70s by the 4th quarter. Winds northwest at 5 - 10 mph.

Purdue @ (24) Wisconsin: 2:30PM (CT)  Camp Randall Stadium: A great day in Wisconsin! Temperatures around 63 at kickoff moving into the mid 50s by the 4th quarter. Plenty of sunshine with winds out of the northwest at 5 - 10 mph.

WVU @ Maryland: 3:30PM Byrd Stadium: Grab that rain gear if you are headed to College Park! Widespread heavy rain moving in early afternoon and sticking around through the duration for the game. Temperatures right around 80 (with humidity for the duration of the game. SW wind @ 5 mph.

Kent State at Penn State: 3:30PM Beaver Stadium: Expect rain (heavy rain) through the tailgating hours and for the first part of the game. Showers decrease and move east after 5 PM. Temperatures in the mid 60s at kickoff only falling into the lower 60s by the 4th quarter. Clouds stick around even after the rain ends.

VMI at Virginia: 3:30PM Scott Stadium: Heavy rain falling at times during the game. It will push in during prime tailgating hours and continue right through the 4th quarter. Temperatures in the low 70s at kickoff falling to a cool 65 degrees at the end of the game. SW winds at 5 mph.

Arkansas at Rutgers: 3:30 PM High Point Solutions Stadium: Starting off with a little morning fog but the rain should hold off until after the game! Clouds will be on the increase through the game with temperatures falling from the upper 70s at kickoff to the low 70s by the 4th quarter. Rain chances will increase after  7PM and heavy rain will be on tap through the overnight hours.

UNC-Charlotte at JMU-6:00PM, Bridgeforth Stadium. Heavy rain falling through the Harrisonburg area starting in the mid-morning hours. Tailgating will be a wet one however, showers will decrease after 7:30 PM so at least the end of the game will likely turn out dry. Temperatures steady, in the mid-60s.

The Citadel at Old Dominion: 6:00 PM Foreman Field: Should be dry for tailgating but showers will moving to the region around kickoff. Temperatures are steady in the mid 70s. Pretty breezy with winds out of the S at 12 - 15mph.

Colorado State at (#1) Alabama: 6:00PM (CT)- Bryant-Denny Stadium: Heavy rain early and becoming light after 7 PM. Showers will move east during the duration of the game leading to what should be a drier 2nd half. Temperatures drop from the mid-70s at kickoff to the upper 60s by 4th quarter.

(#23) Arizona State at (#5) Stanford:  4:00PM(PT) Stanford Stadium: Rain showers possible moving through, nothing TOO heavy though. Starting temperatures in the lower to mid 70s and dropping to the lower to mid 60s through the game. Breezy.

(#15) Michigan at UConn: 8:00 PM Rentschter Field: Light rain early however, more steady rain will move through after kickoff and continues during the overnight hours with pockets of heavy rain. Temperatures in the upper 60s and staying there through the game. South winds 5 -10 mph.



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D.C. Weather Turning Dry; Rain Needed

September 19, 2013 - 08:31 PM

The corn crop was remarkable this summer, the grass was luscious green but now lack of rain is starting to become a bit noticeable in the region.

As a matter of fact, the latest drought monitor, issued each week by the National Drought Mitigation Center, indicates the Washington area is abnormally dry. This designation precedes a moderate drought.

Latest Drought status

Notice how the abnormally dry designation matches well with the latest 60-day precipitation departures in the Mid-Atlantic. The DC area has seen the least amount of rain and thus has the highest rainfall deficit.

Latest Drought status

Looking back through monthly precipitation tallies, the rainfall deficit of 1.94 inches for September (so far) is the greatest deficit since November of last year. What has helped keep precipitation on target though for the year is the surplus seen in June; 6.19 inches above average. July was slightly above average for rain and August is when the dryness began. Rainfall was 1.59 inches below average. Note the precipitation departures in the graph below. Much of the year has been near average, with the significant spike in rainfall in June. However, the latest trends show less rain than average.

Latest Drought status

This is contributing to brown grass in spots and lower volume in area streams. The United States Geological Survey reports that a few streams in Maryland are running at 10% to 25% of their normal flow. Discharge is a great indicator of stream flow.

As for Washington, the Potomac River is still in great shape. Discharge is about 1,810 cubic feet per second at the USGS site near Little Falls. To put this in perspective, the lowest discharge recorded at this site is 121 cubic feet per second in September of 1966.

Latest Drought status

Ground water levels are still in fine shape but have been dropping at an accelerated rate since July. The nearest reporting site to Washington is in Dunkirk, Md., with water at about 43 feet below the ground. The record low is 49.19 feet set back in August of 2007. Given that groundwater levels fluctuate slowly, the dry pattern would have to continue for several more months to begin having problems with wells, etc.

Latest Drought status

The next threat for rain is Saturday, with potential of a half-inch as a cold front swiftly moves through the Mid-Atlantic. Beyond that, a dry weather pattern looks to take charge through much of next week.

Stay ABC7 for the latest on the weekend forecast and when you are away from your television, tune to WTOP for weather on the 8's.

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NFL Football Forecasts for Sunday!

September 12, 2013 - 03:54 PM

Feeling like football weather across the United States! Perfect time for Week 2 of NFL! For all gameday weather updates follow "TailgatingWeatherGal" on Twitter!


1:00 PM (EST) Sunday

Washington Redskins @ Green Bay Packers: Lambeau Field, Green Bay, WI: Showers early as a cold front moves through the area. Hoping that it will clear by gametime but if it lingers, rain showers can't be ruled out Right now looking like kickoff could be wet with showers decreasing in coverage by the mid-afternoon. Overcast with temperatures remaining right around 60 for most of the game. North winds at 5 - 10 mph.


Dallas Cowboys @ Kansas City Chiefs: Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, MO: A few showers possible during the game all associated with a cold front. Temperatures start around 70 at kickoff and around 80 by the 4th quarter. SW wins at 5- 10 mph with clouds skies.


Cleveland Browns @ Baltimore Ravens: M & T Stadium Baltimore, MD: Great day out there in the Inner Harbor for a football game! Temperatures in the mid 70s at kickoff and rising into the upper 70s through the duration of the game. Plenty of sunshine out there with south winds at 5 mph and low humidity.


San Diego Chargers @ Philadelphia Eagles: The Linc, Philadelphia, PA: Sunshine and low humidity. Temperatures building through the mid 70s to the upper 70s by games end. A little breezy with winds turning out of the SW at 10 mph. All sunshine!


4:25PM (EST)

Denver Broncos @ New York Giants: MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ: A wonderful afternoon with a SW wind at 5 - 10 mph and plenty of sunshine. Temperatures in the mid 70s at kickoff fall to the upper 60s by the 4th quarter.


8:30PM (EST) Sunday Night

San Francisco 49ers @ Seattle Seahawks: CenturyLink Field, Seattle, Washington: Showers and embedded thunderstorms likely through at least the beginning of the game (60%). The chance will decrease as the evening goes on. Breezy as well under cloudy skies. Winds SW at 10 - 15 mph. Temperatures stay in the low 70s.


8:30 (EST) Monday Night:

Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals: Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, OH: Starting off in the upper 60s at kickoff, temperatures will fall to the lower 60s by the 4th quarter. Mostly clear skies with winds NE @ 5 mph. Great night!

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College Fooball Forecasts

September 12, 2013 - 11:52 AM

Here we go and certainly feeling like Fall across the United States.....Just in time for College Football! Check the weather forecast out here and as always, be sure to check out and follow "TailgatingWeatherGal" for all the information you need on gameday!


Week 3 -

Saturday (9/14/13)

#5 Stanford @ Army: Saturday Noon at Michie Stadium in West Point, NY: A great day for football! Temperatures will start in the lower 60s at kickoff and rise to the mid 60s with plenty of sunshine through the game. Nice NW wind at 5 - 10 mph.

#7 Louisville @ Kentucky: Saturday Noon at Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington, KY: Sunshine through the game with temperatures in the lower 60s at kickoff. The temp will rise into the upper 60s by the 4th quarter but still comfortable. NE winds at 5 - 10 mph.

Akron @ #11 Michigan: Saturday Noon at "THE BIG HOUSE" in Ann Arbor, MI: A little chilly to begin but plenty of sunshine through the duration of the game. In the mid 50s at kickoff only rising through the low 60s by the 4th quarter. Light winds.

#16 UCLA @ #23 Nebraska: Saturday 11:00AM Memorial Stadium (CT) in Lincoln, NE: A 30% chance of showers and storms rolling through the area but they look to stay mainly north of Memorial Stadium.

Virginia Tech @ Eastern Carolina University: Saturday Noon: Bagwell Stadium in Greenville, NC: Very nice day out there with temperatures around 73 at kickoff and only moving into the mid-70s by the 4th. Not humid if you can believe it and plenty of sunshine.

Georgia State @ WVU: Saturday Noon: Mountaineer Field at Milan Puskar Stadium in Morgantown, WV: A little cool to start things off in Morgantown with temperatures in the upper 50s at kickoff. Sunshine with no humidity. Daytime temperatures will rise into the mid 60s by the 4th quarter with a north wind at 5 mph.

Mid Afternoon Games

#1 Alabama @ #6 Texas A & M: Saturday 2:30 PM (CT) College Station, TX at Kyle Field: Warm at kickoff with temperatures right around the 90 degree mark. Temps moving into the mid 90s through the game

Tennessee @ #2 Oregon: Saturday 12:30 (PT) Eugene, OR Autzen Stadium: Great day out there for football in the Pacific NW. Temperatures in the mid-70s at kickoff rising into the mid 80s by the 4th quarter! SW winds at 5 mph.

Nevada @ (#10) Florida State: Saturday 3:30PM Doak Campbell Stadium, Tallahassee, FL: A hot day (shocker) in Florida with a chance of a stray thunderstorm during gametime. Humid, with temperatures in the low 90s at kickoff and moving into the upper 80s by the 4th quarter. Light winds.

Deleware @ Navy: Saturday 3:30PM Navy-Marine Corp Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, MD: Beautiful day at the Naval Academy! Around 70 at gametime with temperatures slipping into the mid 60s by the end of the game. All sunshine and no humidity!

Late Games:

UCF @ Penn State: Saturday 6:00PM, Beaver Stadium, Happy Valley, PA: Perfect outside with temperatures falling from around the 60 degree mark at gametime to around 50 by the 4th quarter. Feeling like Fall out there! Sunshine to start, the sun will set by 7:1PM. Clear skies during the evening hours, NW winds at 5 - 10 mph.

Maryland @ UCONN: Saturday at 7:30PM, Rentschler Field, East Hartfort, CT: A cool evening as temperatures fall from around 63 at kickoff to the mid 50s by the 4th quarter. Clear skies and light winds with the sunsetting at 7:02 PM.

(#21) Notre Dame @ Purdue: Saturday 8:00PM at Ross-Ade Stadium West Lafayette, IN: Sunseting at 7:50 PM with a light SSE wind at 5 mph. Clear skies with temperatures at kickoff around 65 degrees. Temps bottoming out by the 4th quarter in the mid 50s.

(#25) Old Miss @ Texas: Saturday 7:00PM (CT) Darrell K Royal–Texas Memorial Stadium Austin, TX: Sunsets at 7:39 with temperatures in the lower 90s by kickoff. Warm out there but temperatures will fall through the 80s by the end of the game. E wind at 5 - 10 mph and partly cloudy skies.






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Hurricane Humberto path: First hurricane of the season

September 11, 2013 - 10:40 AM
Photo: NOAA

We've had our fair share of tropical storms this 2013 Atlantic hurricane season, but up until this morning there had been no hurricanes. As of the 5am Wednesday (Sept.11th) update from the National Hurricane Center, Humberto strengthened into a hurricane in the far eastern Atlantic. 


If Humberto had reached hurricane status tomorrow, it would have been the latest date for a hurricane to develop in the Atlantic.  Hurricane Gustav will remain the latest forming hurricane, since it developed on September 11th.  Wait, that's when Humberto formed, right?  Kind of, but not quite.  Gustav didn't reach hurricane status until the 8am update from the National Hurricane Center.  Humberto was named a hurricane at 5am from the NHC. 

As the graphic above states, it's important to note that even though these are the latest forming hurricanes, these years didn't all end in a slow hurricane season.  In fact, September of 2001 had a total of nine hurricanes. 

We are now just past the peak of hurricane season.  The Atlantic temperatures are warmest in the late summer and early fall, which is one of the main factors in hurricane development.


The two active tropical systems in the Atlantic (Tropical Storm Gabrielle) and Hurricane Humberto) both pose no immediate threat on the U.S.  Here's the latest track map for both storms. 

We'll continue to watch the tropics very closely over the next several months.  It was late October last year when hurricane Sandy slammed into the Northeast. 

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NFL football forecasts for tailgating and games across the league

September 6, 2013 - 03:11 PM

Take a peek at some of your favorite NFL match-ups and how the weather is shaping up for the games and the tailgating fun! Check out TailgatingWxgal for more information!

New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills: Saturday, 1 p.m. at Ralph Wilson Stadium: Partly cloudy and nice! Just a little breezy, winds north at 7 - 15 mph. Temperatures will be in the mid 60s and stay there for a majority of the game.

Cincinnati Bengals at Chicago Bears: Sunday 1 p.m. at Solider Field: They don't call it "The Windy City" for nothing and Sunday is no exception. Winds rolling from the NW at 12 - 18 mph with gusts up to 30 mph expected. Partly cloudy skies with temperatures in the mid 70s for much of the game!

Tennessee Titans at Pittsburgh Steelers: Sunday, 1 p.m. at Heniz Field: Dodging a few showers floating around early, by gametime things should dry out as a frontal system moves south of the region. Highs in the mid-70s with gradually clearing behind the front. Kickoff: Lingering shower possible, cloudy, mid-70s. Cooling towards the afternoon with decreasing clouds. Winds N at 7-13 mph.

Seattle Seahawks at Carolina Panthers: Sunday, 1 p.m. at Bank of America Stadium: Slightly humid (dewpoints in mid 60s) with temperatures in the mid 80s to start the game moving into the upper 80s. Only a slight chance of an isolated storm/shower in the late afternoon/early evening.

Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers: Sunday 4:25 p.m. at Candlestick Park: A warm one in San Francisco with temperatures during the game in the mid to upper 70s! All sunshine with very few clouds. Only thing is the windy conditions WNW 8-16 mph.

 New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys: Sunday, 8:30 p.m. at AT&T Stadium (Retractable roof): Sunset at 7:42 and it is STILL going to be a hot one. Low humidity but temperatures in the mid 90s at kickoff and only in the upper 80s by the 4th quarter. Very clear skies with SSE winds at 5 - 10 mph.

Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins: Monday, 6:55 p.m. at FedEx Field: What a beautiful evening it will be for football with temperatures in the mid 70s for kickoff and around 70 by the 4th quarter. Just a few clouds on the increase. Daytime highs on Monday will be right around 80 degrees so enjoy the tailgating scene! Low humidity with the sun setting at 7:25PM.


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College football weather forecasts for tailgating and games across the U.S.

September 6, 2013 - 11:54 AM
Virginia hosts Oregon at Scott Stadium in Charlottesville on Saturday. Photo: Associated Press

It's that time of year again! FOOTBALL TIME! Here is a look at the forecasts around the states for some match-ups in college football, listed in chronological order. For more updates, follow TailgatingWXGal!

Wake Forest at Boston College, Friday, 8 p.m. at Alumni Stadium, Chestnut Hill, Ma.: Low 60s at kickoff dropping slowly into the upper 50s by the 4th quarter. Skies will be clear with a SSW wind at 5 - 10 mph. Sunset in Boston is at 7:09PM

University of Central Florida and Florida International, Friday, 8 p.m. at FIU Stadium or commonly known at "THE CAGE," Miami, Fla.: Temperatures will be in the low 80s through the majority of the game. A few isolated thunderstorms early in the afternoon should be out of the region by kickoff. Humid but clearing. ENE 5-10 mph. Sun will set at 7:33 PM.

Florida (#12) at Miami, Saturday, noon at Sun Life Stadium, Miami Gardens, Fla.: Hot. Temperatures in the near 90 at kickoff with just a 20% of seeing some storms floating around early but that chance will increase to about 30% through the afternoon. It will feel warmer with the humidity, but a slight breeze may help to alleviate the heat. Clouds increasing through the duration of the game.

South Carolina State at Clemson (#4), Saturday, 12:30 p.m. at Memorial Stadium, Clemson, S.C.: It is going to be a warm one but not too bad for South Carolina this time of year. 80 degrees at kickoff but feeling warmer with the humidity. Moving into the mid to upper 80s by the 4th quarter. Isolated storm possible but looking unlikely. ESE winds at 5 mph. UV Index very high!

Eastern Michigan at Penn State, Saturday, noon at Beaver Stadium, State College, Pa.: Very nice in the Happy Valley. Temperatures around 70 at kickoff moving into the mid-70s by 4th quarter. No humidity and light winds. UV Index  moderate.

Western Carolina at Virginia Tech: Saturday, 1:30 p.m. at Lane Stadium, Blacksburg, Va.: Expect very low humidity with all sunshine. Temperatures around 73 at kickoff and moving into the mid to upper 70s by the 4th quarter. Perfect football weather. SW winds 3-6 mph with a moderate UV index.

Oregon at Virginia: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. at Scott Stadium, Charlottesville, Va.: Temperatures right around the 80 degree mark at kickoff with temperatures falling quickly into the low 70s by 7 PM, Winds SSW at 5 mph. All sunshine through the game with low humidity!

San Diego State at Ohio State: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. at Ohio Stadium, Columbus, Ohio:  Expect low to mid 80s at kickoff with low humidity. Temperatures will fall to the upper 70s by 7PM. Increasing clouds late in the evening hours but the sun will be out for the majority of the game. Winds SW 5 - 10 mph.

Old Dominion at Maryland: Saturday, 4:00 p.m. at Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium, College Park, Md.: Beautiful day at College Park with temperatures around 80 degrees at kickoff moving into the lower to mid 70s by the 4th. Just a few clouds and low humidity. Winds South at 5 mph.

South Carolina (#6) at ]Georgia (#11): Saturday, 4:30 p.m. at Sanford Stadium, Athens, Ga.: Warm but not "Georgia Hot" for early September. Upper 80s to start the game and slightly humid with dewpoints in the mid 60s. Mostly sunny through the game with a light wind. UV Index Very High through the early afternoon so put on the sunscreen! 7:51 Sunset

Navy at Indiana: Saturday, 6:00 p.m. at Memorial Stadium, Bloomington, Ind.: Sunshine to start with the sun setting at 8:07 PM. Sunshine to start the afternoon with a few clouds on the increase. Temps in the mid 80s at kickoff and dropping off into the mid 70s by 9 PM. Winds WSW from 3-6 mph.

James Madison at Akron: Saturday, 6:00 p.m. at Infrocision Stadium, Akron, Ohio: Expect sunshine through the afternoon and clear skies through the duration of the game. Light winds with temperatures in the lower 80s at kickoff and dropping quickly to the lower 70s by 10 PM. Sunset at 7:51 PM

Richmond at NC State: Saturday, 6:00 p.m. at Carter-Finley Stadium, Raleigh, N.C.: Temperatures just around 80 degrees at kick off with low humidity! Temps will fall through the 70s during the game with light winds. Sunset at 7:34PM.

West Virginia at Oklahoma (#16): Saturday, 7:00 p.m. at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium, Norman, Okla.: All sun and not clouds for tailgating--Sunset at 7:50 PM. Clear skies in the evening with temperatures in the mid 90s for kickoff falling into the mid 80s by the 4th quarter. Humid so feeling a touch warmer. Winds light out of the SE.

Notre Dame (#14) at Michigan (#17): Saturda, 8:00 p.m. at Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, Mich.: Mid-70s for kickoff and falling into the upper 60s with clouds increasing throughout the day. Westerly wind at 5 - 10 mph.

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NASA Rocket Launch Tonight

September 6, 2013 - 11:00 AM

It's a big night at NASA Wallops.  A rocket launch is set for tonight, shortly before midnight.  NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) is a robotic mission that will "orbit the moon to gather detailed information about the atmosphere and composition of the thin lunar atmosphee and determine whether dust is being lofted into the lunar sky" NASA Wallops. 


The launch is scheduled for 11:27pm EDT Friday night (September 6th) from NASA Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, VA.  Weather conditions for the launch look ideal.  Clear skies and light winds should aid in a successful launch (provided there are no other problems with the Minotaur V rocket that will launch LADEE, etc.). 

If you're hoping to catch a glimpse of the rocket after it takes off, you'll likely be able to see it in the eastern sky.  Check out this great image from NASA.  Within the red circle (about a 60 mile radius), people should see the rocket rise 10 seconds after launch time.  The rocket will be visible for folks in southern Maryland 30 seconds after the launch and for most of the WJLA viewing area the rocket will be seen two minutes after the launch.


 Here's a link to more information on the LADEE mission.

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10 reasons D.C. weather is awesome

September 5, 2013 - 12:33 PM

1. The D.C. area gets all four seasons. Terrible cold (or sometimes mild) winters, beautiful spring and fall, and a nice hot and humid summer. We can deal with them as we know they only last 3 months each!

2. Uhh, sunrises and sunsets are unreal. I know this is true throughout the country, but they don't have the monuments now, do they? (AB Pan Photography)

Sunrise at the Vietnam Memorial - AB Pan Photography

3. Speaking of picturesque, fall foliage in the region can be spectacular. Anyone leaf peeping this fall?

Fall foliage rocks.

4. Severe weather can be bad, but it isn't nearly as bad as other areas of the country. There has never been an EF-5 tornado recorded east of the Appalachians, we've never had a category 5 hurricane, and even our earthquakes are weak (yea, geology included I guess).

OK, OK. The derecho was baaaad.

5. We have 14 hours and 54 minutes of daylight in the summer. Unless you work the graveyard shift, this is cool.

We get to wear really cool shades too.

6. The D.C. area sometimes gets blizzards that drop 2 feet of snow and close work down for a week. Though notoriously hard to forecast, once every couple of winters, these are awesome. Unless you get 3 in one winter like 2009-2010. We even have planned snowball fights!

7. October. It's arguably the best weather of the year every year, with sunshine, comfortable days and cool, crisp nights. Not to mention the foliage, pumpkins and fall brews!

We even had snow in late October a few years back!

8. Our "extreme" averages (oxymoron right there!) are 28°F for the average low in January and 89°F for the average high in July. Things could be MUCH worse.

And we can wear sweet hats!

9. D.C. gets all kinds of weather. From sunshine, to blizzards, severe weather, hurricanes, you name it. Talk about variety! No boredom here!

Hurricane Sandy from Space (Credit: NASA)

10. The D.C. area has 6 radars meteorologists can tap into! We, of course, have our own in Live Super Doppler 7 (shameless self-promotion), but also can tap into the Sterling radar as well as the terminal dopplers at Reagan, Dulles, BWI and Joint Base Andrews!

Here is a selection of the multiple radars we can use!


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HIGH pollen counts in the D.C. area

September 4, 2013 - 11:57 AM

"We are right at the 'peak period' for our ragweed counts. To date, we have been below average for our daily ragweed counts. This is not much assurance, however, for ragweed sufferers in our area who are already wheezing and sneezing out there. Ragweed alone accounted for 41.53 grains/cubic meter or about 91% of the last 24 hour weed count total. Nettle family pollen, sage pollen and the chenopod/amaranth group (lambs qtrs and pigweed) also contribute to our weed count."

These are the words of our favorite Microbiologist, Susan Kosisky, who is the Director of Aerobiological Reporting and Evaluation at the US Army Centralized Allergen Extract Lab. She issues the Pollen Count for the D.C. area, which is HIGH not only for the weed count, but also for grasses and mold.

Wednesday's Pollen Count

Ragweed counts have been below average so far this season and were below average in August, but dry conditions have allowed it to come back early this September. With dry conditions expected the remainder of the week, ragweed should continue to be a problem to allergy sufferers across the region.


Tomorrow may be exceptionally bad for people allergic to ragweed, as a dry cold front will move through and breezy winds will allow for more of the pollen to be picked up into the air. Be sure to take the proper precautions and even though it will be nice out, keep your windows closed!

Other tips to beat your allergies:

-Take an over the counter antihistamine

-Change your clothes after being outdoors for a prolonged period of time

-Keep your windows closed in your vehicles and home

-Shower before bed to wash any pollen off your skin

-Try to stay inside between 10am and 4pm if possible as pollen counts are usually highest during that time period

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September weather in Washington D.C.

September 2, 2013 - 05:14 AM

August went out with the high heat and humidity and September has continued with highs in the low 90s for the start of the month. So what should you expect for the remainder of the month? Here is a look at the average September conditions in the D.C. area.

Yesterday Reagan National reached 93 degrees, and is expected to do so once again today. This isn't completely out of the norm, as it hit 95 on September 1st last year, but the average high temperature for the start of the month is in the mid 80s (84°F), so the month will definitely start out above normal.

By September 30th, the average high is down to a comfortable 74°F, and average low temperatures are at 57°F! Reagan National hasn't been in the 50s since June 5th when it hit 59°F.

Record highs are in the 90s for the month but there are only three record highs at 100°F or better, so extreme heat is beginning to subside. Record lows really fall during the month from the 50s the beginning of the month to the upper 30s by the end.

Averages in September at DCA

One big thing you'll notice is the amount of daylight the area will lose during the month. September 1st starts with 13 hours and 1 minute of daylight, where as by the 30th, there will be under 12 hours of daylight at 11 hours and 49 minutes. The 26th is the first day this fall with under 12 hours of daylight.

Meteorological Fall started on the 1st of the month, but the Fall Equinox actually is on Sunday the 22nd this September at 4:44pm. This occurs when the sun lies directly over the equator. The tilt of the earth will begin to bring more direct sunlight to the Southern Hemisphere after the 22nd.

When do the leaves change around the D.C. area? Well you'll have to wait at least another month, as they won't change until closer to mid or late October.

Reminder, even though the tropics were quiet through August, the climatological peak in in September, so we'll be sure to keep you aware of anything that develops!

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