Powerhouse storm to sweep the Heartland

Powerhouse storm to sweep the Heartland

Across the Corn Belt, mostly dry weather accompanies near- or below-normal temperatures. A thick blanket of snow remains in place across the northern and western Corn Belt.

On the Plains, cold weather prevails in advance of an approaching storm. Early Friday, sub-zero temperatures cover much of Montana and North Dakota, which remain deeply covered by snow. Some light snow has begun to develop on the central Plains.

In the South, a band of heavy rain stretches from eastern Texas into the southern Mid-Atlantic region. Across portions of the mid-South, including the northern Mississippi Delta and the Tennessee Valley, rain is sparking flash flooding and aggravating lowland flooding.

In the West, below-normal temperatures persist. Freeze Warnings were in effect early Friday in California’s San Joaquin Valley, as well as near-coastal areas in southern California. Meanwhile, significant snow continues to fall across the mountains of the Southwest, especially in Arizona.

Another impressive storm, but much stronger compared to previous systems, will cross the Southwest Friday, traverse the Plains on Saturday, and reach the upper Great Lakes region by Sunday. Snow and blowing snow may result in stress on livestock and significant travel disruptions in several regions, including the Southwest, central Plains, and upper Midwest. Blizzard conditions could engulf some areas. Farther south, high winds could rake portions of the southern Plains. Meanwhile, additional rainfall could total 2 to 4 inches or more across the mid-South and environs, perpetuating flood concerns. During the weekend and early next week, stormy weather will return across the Northwest, where colder-than-normal conditions will persist. Early next week, another surge of Arctic air will reach the northern Plains and upper Midwest, but most of the effects of the cold weather will remain confined to the northern U.S.

Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day calls for the likelihood of near- or below-normal temperatures and near- or above-normal precipitation across most of the country. Warmer-than-normal weather will be confined to southern California, peninsular Florida, and the Desert Southwest, while drier-than-normal conditions should be limited to parts of the Southeast and much of the Mississippi Valley.

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