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Inaugural weather forecast - 33 and snow (maybe)

The National Weather Service's first long-range forecast for Inauguration Day next Tuesday is in, and it's a wintry one.

Looking a week down the road, Sterling is calling for a high of just 33 degrees in Washington, with a 30 percent chance of snow. Coming off an overnight low of just 22 degrees, that likely means temperatures in the upper 20s around the time the swearing-in occurs at noon. 

That would make this Inauguration Day at least 10 degrees colder than the average Jan. 20 . On the other hand, 33 degrees might feel downright toasty after the lows we're expected to experience on Friday and on into the weekend.

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The overnight low now predicted for Baltimore (BWI) on Friday night into Saturday morning has slipped again to just 1 degree above zero. The last time BWI reported 1 degree was 12 years ago, on Jan. 19, 1997. We haven't been below zero at the airport since Feb. 5, 1996, when it was minus-1 degree Fahrenheit, according to the folks at Sterling.

Saturday and Sunday, too, will likely remain below freezing all day long. Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday looks like the warmest day in the forecast, with sunshine and a high of 35 at the airport.

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In the meantime, forecasters now expect more chances for snowfall this week as a series of "clipper" systems and arctic cold fronts spill down out of the Far North. The first snow threat runs from Wednesday night into Thursday night, with no more than a 30 percent chance of flakes as the system struggles to push the moisture past the mountains into our part of the state.

A second, and much colder front goes past late on Wednesday into Thursday, bringing more risks for light snow or snow showers in western and northern counties, as well as bitter cold. Another weak storm system will pass through on Sunday, with a 30 percent chance of leaving something white behind.

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