In the West, generally hot, dry weather prevails. Across the interior Northwest, the small grain harvest is proceeding under a favorable weather regime.

On the Plains, cooler air is overspreading some eastern areas, including the Dakotas and eastern Nebraska, but hot conditions persist across the remainder of the nation's mid-section. A few showers dot the southern and eastern Plains, but most of the region remains extremely dry.

In the Corn Belt, favorably cooler air is starting to arrive, following Tuesday's heat that featured highs of 100 to 105°F in locations such as Omaha, Nebraska, and Sedalia, Missouri. In addition, scattered but highly beneficial showers and thunderstorms are overspreading the western Corn Belt.

In the South, locally heavy showers linger in the southern Atlantic States, current home to some of the nation's healthiest pastures. On August 5, Florida led the nation with more than three-quarters (78%) of its pastureland rated in good to excellent condition. Across the remainder of the South, hot, dry weather is promoting fieldwork, including early-season rice harvesting, and rapid crop development.

Outlook: Scattered showers and thunderstorms will linger in the Southeast, with the heaviest rain likely along the southern Atlantic and central Gulf Coasts. Meanwhile, showers will accompany a cold front across the Midwest and Northeast, where rainfall could tally 2 to 4 inches from the lower Great Lakes region into New England. However, Midwestern totals will be mostly less than an inch, except for higher amounts in parts of the eastern Corn Belt. Elsewhere, little or no rain will fall through week's end across the western half of the U.S. In addition, heat will persist from the High Plains westward, but a period of much cooler weather will cover the eastern half of the U.S. The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for August 13-17 calls for near- to above-normal temperatures nationwide. Hot weather will be most likely in the Southwest. Meanwhile, near- to above-normal rainfall across the majority of the U.S. will contrast with drier-than-normal conditions from the southern Plains into the lower Ohio Valley.