A Severe Thunderstorm Watch is in effect until 8 p.m. for Northern and West-Central Virginia for storms capable of damaging wind gusts in excess of 65 mph and large hail. Any of the storms that track into this part of the state later this afternoon, though, will likely produce frequent lightning, gusty winds, heavy downpours, and potentially some small hail. A few isolated tornadoes are also possible. These storms are developing in response to an approaching cold front that is moving into a very hot and humid air mass over the Mid-Atlantic. You can see the bright white tops of the developing storms to Virginia's northwest ahead of the cold front in this visible satellite image:
These storms will track into northern Virginia this afternoon, and other storms could develop in Central Virginia later this afternoon as well.