In the West, a few showers are returning to the northern Pacific Coast. Elsewhere, warm, dry weather is promoting fieldwork and crop development, following an extended period of cool conditions.

On the Plains, cold air is settling across Montana and the Dakotas, where this morning’s temperatures locally fell below 20°F. Meanwhile on the central and southern Plains, mild, dry weather favors planting preparations and early-season seeding operations.

In the Corn Belt, cool air is surging across the upper Midwest, where this morning’s temperatures dipped below 32°F. Mild weather prevails across the remainder of the region, while isolated showers are confined to parts of Indiana and Ohio.

In the South, warm, dry weather is promoting fieldwork and crop growth. However, drought is adversely affecting some pastures, winter grains, and emerging summer crops across the lower Southeast. Other drought-related impacts include heavy irrigation demands and an increased risk of wildfires.

Outlook: During the early- to mid-week period, freezes will affect portions of the Midwest and Northeast. The cold weather could threaten early-blooming fruits and other freeze-sensitive crops. Gusty winds and occasional showers will accompany the chilly conditions. Meanwhile, warmth will gradually expand from the West to the High Plains. Late in the week, warm weather will overspread the eastern half of the U.S., while cool conditions will return to the West—accompanied by rain and snow showers. The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for April 14-18 calls for near- to above-normal temperatures across the majority of the nation will contrast with cooler-than-normal conditions in an area stretching from the southern High Plains and the Southwest into the upper Midwest. Meanwhile, above-normal precipitation across the majority of the U.S. will contrast with drier-than-normal weather across the northern Plains, along the Atlantic Seaboard, and in parts of the Pacific Coast States and the Desert Southwest.