An active pattern this week across the Heartland
Across the Corn Belt, a thunderstorm cluster is crossing the Mississippi Valley. Elsewhere in the Midwest, warm, dry weather favors corn and soybean harvesting, which has begun to wind down in some areas. Across the southern and eastern Corn Belt, winter wheat planting is ongoing.
On the Plains, cooler weather—accompanied by beneficial showers—is returning to northern areas. Meanwhile, warm weather is promoting winter wheat development across the southern half of the Plains. In addition, scattered showers and thunderstorms dot northern and western Texas.
In the South, very warm, dry weather is promoting fieldwork, including winter wheat planting and cotton, peanut, and soybean harvesting. Monday’s high temperatures will again approach, reach, or exceed 90° in the western Gulf Coast region.
In the West, an early-season Pacific storm is producing heavy precipitation as far south as central California. Meanwhile, scattered showers are overspreading the Great Basin, northern Intermountain West, and Pacific Northwest. The precipitation is slowing fieldwork but aiding rangeland, pastures, and winter grains.
The storm system currently affecting the West will slowly move eastward, reaching the nation’s midsection late in the week. Five-day precipitation totals could reach 1 to 3 inches from the Mid-South into the Midwest. In the West, additional precipitation totals of 2 to 4 inches can be expected in parts of northern and central California. By week’s end, lingering warmth will be confined to the East, as sharply colder air will trail the storm system.
Elsewhere, a developing tropical system over the Caribbean Sea may soon become Tropical Storm Sandy. Future interactions between the tropical system and the storm over the nation’s mid-section will determine late-week weather pattern across the eastern U.S.
Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day outlook for calls for below-normal temperatures across the Plains, Midwest, and Southeast, while warmer-than-normal weather will prevail in the West and Northeast. Meanwhile, above-normal precipitation in the Northwest and east of the Mississippi River will contrast with drier-than-normal conditions from California to the central and southern Plains.