A major weather pattern shift ahead

A major weather pattern shift ahead

Across the Corn Belt, mild, dry weather prevails. The return to dry weather in the eastern Corn Belt favors a resumption of final summer crop harvest efforts, following recent showers.

On the Plains, unusually warm, dry weather persists. Stress on rangeland, pastures, and winter wheat remains most significant across the southern Plains, where drought is developing, and on the northern High Plains, where the punishing drought that developed during the spring of 2017 continues to cause adverse effects.

In the South, short-term drought is stressing pastures and recently emerged winter wheat in several areas, including the mid-South, the Mississippi Delta, and portions of the southern Atlantic States.

In the West, a wet November has drawn to a close across the Pacific Northwest, where showers continue. The remainder of the West is experiencing mild, dry weather. Consistent with a developing La Niña, acute short-term dryness stretches from southern California to the southern Rockies.

Mild, dry weather will dominate the country through the weekend, although periodic rain and snow showers will continue from the Pacific Northwest to the northern Rockies. Early next week, however, rain will develop along and east of a line from eastern Texas into the upper Mississippi Valley, in the vicinity of a cold front. In the front’s wake, colder air will begin to engulf the central and eastern U.S., starting across the northern Plains and upper Midwest. As sharply colder air arrives, precipitation will change to snow in the upper Great Lakes region. Five-day precipitation totals could reach 1 to 3 inches in the Pacific Northwest and 1 to 2 inches in the northern Rockies and from the mid-South into the Great Lakes region. In contrast, dry weather will prevail from southern California to the central and southern High Plains.

Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day outlook calls for the likelihood of near- to below-normal temperatures nationwide, except for warmer-than-normal weather in Maine and from California to the northern High Plains. Meanwhile, near- to below-normal precipitation across most of the country should contrast with wetter-than-normal conditions in the Gulf and Atlantic Coast States, as well as the upper Great Lakes region.

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