Morning chill coldest since June

Temperatures dipped into the upper 50s both Sunday and Monday mornings at BWI Marshall Airport for the first time in more than two months. Is it beginning to feel like fall?

BWI reached 59 for a second day in a row from 6-7 a.m. The last time that happened, it was June 27. The expected high is about 78 degrees, less of a shock with a few such cooler days scattered through the summer.

The temperatures are normal for this time of year, if not lower by a degree or two. Normal highs in mid-September are around 80 degrees, with lows around 60. By month's end, normal lows are well into the 50s with highs in the low 70s.

The rest of the week is expected to be slightly warmer than normal, however. Highs are forecast in the low- to mid-80s, with lows in the mid-60s.

The temperatures are cooling as the sun's intensity wanes, of course. The sun's altitude in the sky at solar noon is just more than halfway above the horizon, at about 50 degrees. By the winter solstice, that falls to about 27 degrees.

Each day, we are seeing about 2 1/2 minutes more darkness. Sunset gets about 45 minutes earlier over this month, to 6:50 p.m. by the end of September, while sunrise is getting later in the morning and will come after 7 a.m. by month's end.

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