The 6-10 day temperature outlook
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Across the Corn Belt, cloudy, breezy weather prevails in the wake of a departing storm system. Snow showers linger in several areas, particularly across the lower Great Lakes region. Any attempts at fieldwork, including late-season harvest efforts, are again on hold, due to soggy or snow-covered fields.

On the Plains, mild, breezy weather prevails across Montana’s high plains. Cool, dry weather covers the remainder of the region. Following the recent storm system, snow remains on the ground in much of Nebraska and the Dakotas, as well as portions of neighboring states. In drought-affected areas of Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, and northern Texas, rangeland, pastures, and winter grains are benefiting from the recent boost in topsoil moisture.

In the South, dry, cooler conditions trail the recent spell of warm, showery weather. Dryness has been mostly eradicated from the Southeast, but drought continues to affect portions of the western Gulf Coast region.

In the West, frigid weather persists across the central Rockies and environs, where Tuesday morning’s temperatures again fell below 0° in many locations. Meanwhile, a significant precipitation event is underway from the Pacific Northwest to the northern Rockies. Elsewhere, dense fog is plaguing parts of California, including the San Joaquin Valley.

A storm system over the Great Lakes region will slowly weaken and drift eastward. However, wintry weather will linger into New Year’s Day across parts of the Northeast. Meanwhile, unsettled weather will persist for much of the week in the Northwest, where precipitation will help to boost sub-par mountain snowpack. Five-day precipitation totals could reach 2 to 6 inches or more in the Cascades and along the northern Pacific Coast. In contrast, dry weather will prevail through week’s end in central and southern California and the Desert Southwest. Late in the week, heavy rain should return across the South, while snow may blanket some areas from the Midwest into New England. Storm-total rainfall could reach 2 to 4 inches from the central Gulf Coast to the southern Appalachians.

Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day outlook calls for the likelihood of near- or below-normal temperatures nationwide, except for warmer-than-normal weather in California and the Desert Southwest. Meanwhile, near- or above-normal across the nation’s northern tier should contrast with drier-than-normal conditions in the southern two-thirds of the U.S.

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Greg Soulje, a professional meteorologist since 1985, offers national agricultural weather forecasts via "This Week in Agribusiness."