Across the Corn Belt, a high-pressure system settling across the Great Lakes region is resulting in cool, dry weather. In addition, blustery conditions linger across parts of the eastern Corn Belt. Farther west, however, temperatures are rebounding to near- or above-normal levels in the western Corn Belt. Following recent heavy rainfall, lowland flooding lingers in several areas, particularly across central Missouri.
On the Plains, dry weather prevails. Unusual warmth continues across the northern High Plains, where Friday’s high temperatures could reach 70°. Winter grains on the central Plains continue to benefit from recent soil moisture improvements. However, the latest (March 16) U.S. Drought Monitor indicates that drought still covers more than one-quarter (26%) of the U.S. winter wheat production area.
In the South, showers associated with a departing storm linger across the middle Atlantic States. Cool, dry, breezy weather covers the remainder of the region. Friday’s high temperatures will remain below 70°, except across Florida’s peninsula and Deep South Texas.
In the West, rain and snow showers associated with a Pacific storm system continue to move inland across northern and central California and the Northwest. In advance of the approaching storm, warmth has developed in the Desert Southwest. Farther north, recent storminess in the central Rockies has eased drought and bolstered water-supply prospects.
Mid-Atlantic rain and snow showers will end later Friday. Meanwhile, a high-pressure system over the Great Lakes States will shift eastward, allowing warmer air to gradually expand across the central and eastern U.S. Farther west, Pacific storms will maintain cool, showery weather as far south as central California, the central Rockies, and the Inter-mountain West. Early next week, a developing storm system over the nation’s mid-section could produce snow across the central Rockies and heavy rain from the central Plains into parts of the Midwest. Elsewhere, another round of heavy showers and locally severe thunderstorms may occur across the South.
Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day outlook calls for the likelihood of near- or below-normal temperatures across much of the western and central U.S., while warmer-than-normal weather will prevail in northern California and east of the Mississippi River. Meanwhile, near- or above-normal precipitation across most of the country should contrast with drier-than-normal conditions in southern Florida, the Far West, and portions of the northern Plains.