In the West, dry weather and record-setting high temperatures favor a rapid fieldwork pace. However, dryness remains a concern with respect to Northwestern winter grains. Oregon’s winter wheat had not yet begun to emerge by September 30, compared to the 5-year average of 12%.
On the Plains, drought continues to limit winter wheat emergence in South Dakota (5% emerged versus the 5- year average of 32%), Nebraska (16 vs. 41%), Colorado (20 vs. 37%), and Montana (4 vs. 15%). Meanwhile, dry weather has returned to the southern Plains, following a period of wet weather that benefited rangeland, pastures, and winter grains, but was a concern for open-boll cotton.
In the Corn Belt, showers are gradually ending across the lower Great Lakes region. Recent soil moisture improvements in the southern and eastern Corn Belt are benefiting newly planted winter wheat. Elsewhere, mild, dry weather continues to promote a rapid harvest pace, especially across the upper Midwest.
In the South, showers and thunderstorms linger along and near the southern Atlantic Coast. Across the remainder of the region, summer crop harvesting and other fieldwork activities remain limited in the wake of recent heavy rainfall.
Outlook: Heavy rain will end later today in the East, although showers may linger for a few days along the Atlantic Seaboard. Farther west, a strong cold front will reach northern portions of the Rockies and High Plains by late Tuesday. Rain and snow showers will accompany the surge of cold air, which will engulf the Plains and Midwest on Thursday and Friday. Heavy snow will be confined to the northern Rockies as well as eastern North Dakota and northern Minnesota. Toward week’s end, freezes can be expected as far south as the central High Plains and the upper Midwest, while below-normal temperatures will cover the majority of the U.S. During the weekend, lingering warmth will be limited to the Far West and lower Southeast. The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for October 7-11 calls for cooler-than-normal conditions nearly nationwide, while above-normal temperatures will be confined to the Pacific Northwest. Meanwhile, wetter-than-normal weather in the East and southern portions of the Rockies and High Plains will contrast with near- to below-normal precipitation across the remainder of the U.S.