A thick snow cover across the northern, western Corn Belt

A thick snow cover across the northern, western Corn Belt

Across the Corn Belt, wind-blown snow showers persist across roughly the eastern half of the region. A thick blanket of snow remains in place across much of the northern and western Corn Belt, with current depths at 10 inches in Kansas City, Missouri; 9 inches in Des Moines, Iowa; and 7 inches in Rockford, Illinois.

On the Plains, cool, dry weather prevails in the wake of recent, drought-easing storminess. Snow remains on the ground across portions of the central and southern Plains, with current depths at 6 inches in Wichita, Kansas, and 3 inches in Omaha, Nebraska, and Enid, Oklahoma.

In the South, snow showers are confined to the western slopes of the southern Appalachians. Cool, dry weather covers the remainder of the region. Some planting is underway across the Deep South; for example, corn planting was 9% percent complete in Texas by February 24, on the strength of early planting in the far southern part of the state.

In the West, precipitation (rain and snow) is increasing from the Pacific Northwest to the northern Rockies. Meanwhile, warm, dry weather favors early-season fieldwork in California.

A pesky low-pressure system currently centered over the lower Great Lakes region will drift eastward and continue to weaken. However, lingering rain and snow showers will affect the southern and eastern Corn Belt, the Appalachians, and the Northeast. A few showers will also occur into the weekend across southern Florida.

Meanwhile, late-week warmth will spread from the West to the High Plains, but chilly conditions will persist across the eastern half of the U.S. Elsewhere, precipitation will be mostly confined to the Northwest.

Early next week, however, a storm system will generate some precipitation from the northern Plains into the Southeast.

Looking ahead, the  6- to 10-day outlook calls for near- to below-normal temperatures nationwide, except for warmer-than-normal weather in Maine and parts of the Southwest. Meanwhile, above-normal precipitation across the northern Plains, upper Midwest, and Ohio and Tennessee Valleys will contrast with drier-than-normal conditions along the Atlantic Seaboard and from central and southern California into the Southwest.

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