An active pattern continues across the Corn Belt

An active pattern continues across the Corn Belt

Across the Corn Belt, fresh snow blankets a broad area stretching from Nebraska into the lower Great Lakes region. Current snow depths include 5 inches in Des Moines, Iowa, and Fort Wayne, Indiana. In the storm’s wake, Tuesday morning’s low temperatures across the upper Midwest generally ranged from 0 to -20°.

On the Plains, recent storminess helped to replenish winter wheat’s protective snow cover from Nebraska northward. Early Tuesday, sub-zero temperatures were observed across the Dakotas and eastern Montana. Colder weather has arrived across the parched southern Plains, but dry conditions persist. Early Tuesday, some light snow is spreading across the central High Plains, including northwestern Kansas.

In the South, showers and a few thunderstorms are developing in the central and western Gulf Coast States. A sharp temperature gradient has developed, with cold air settling across the mid-South and warmth prevailing across the Deep South and in the southern Atlantic States.

In the West, record-setting warmth continues in many areas, including parts of California and the Great Basin. The average water content of the high-elevation Sierra Nevada snowpack has decreased slightly in recent days and currently stands at 4 inches—less than one-quarter of the early-February normal. Elsewhere, cold air is pushing against the eastern slopes of the Rockies, helping to generate a few snow showers.

Atypically warm weather will continue for the next few days in the West, followed by cooler conditions during the weekend. Meanwhile, late-week warmth in the South will contrast with very cold weather across the northern Plains and upper Midwest. Several disturbances will travel along the temperature boundary, generating widespread precipitation. From the northern Plains into the Northeast, periods of wintry precipitation will occur. Five-day precipitation totals could reach 2 to 4 inches from eastern Texas to the southern Appalachians, and 1 to 3 inches in the middle and northern Atlantic States. Farther west, however, dry weather will persist from California to the southern High Plains.

Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day outlook calls for the likelihood of near- to below-normal temperatures between the Rockies and Appalachians, while warmer-than-normal weather should prevail in the East and much of the Far West. Meanwhile, above-normal precipitation across the southern and eastern U.S. should contrast with drier-than-normal conditions in the Far West and portions of the north-central U.S.

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