In the West, dry, cold weather prevails following yesterday’s much-needed snow in the eastern Great Basin and central Rockies. Nevertheless, very low mountain snowpacks persist from the Sierra Nevada into the central and southern Rockies, leading to bleak spring runoff prospects.
On the Plains, colder weather is settling into southern portions of the region. Yesterday’s highs topped 80°F in parts of Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas, exacerbating drought impacts on early winter wheat development. Meanwhile, notably warmer conditions are rapidly returning to the northern Plains, where today’s highs are expected to average more than 10°F above normal.
In the Corn Belt, showers are sweeping through the Ohio Valley, maintaining abundant soil moisture for winter wheat development. Dry, mild weather prevails across the western half of the region.
In the South, mild, dry weather continues across the Southeast, promoting fieldwork and winter wheat development. Meanwhile, increasingly heavy showers are developing over the Delta and Tennessee Valley.
Outlook: A cold front will generate showers across the eastern third of the nation, although rain will mostly bypass drought areas of the Southeast and Florida. However, the tail end of the front will stall and interact with an influx of Gulf moisture, leading to locally heavy showers and thunderstorms from eastern portions of Texas and Oklahoma into the Delta and Tennessee Valley. By early next week, Gulf moisture will begin to surge northward, increasing chances for rain in the middle Mississippi Valley and eastern Corn Belt. Out west, an approaching frontal system will bring rain and mountain snow to the Pacific Northwest, while the remainder of the west remains dry and increasingly warm. The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for March 13-17 calls for warmer-than-normal weather across much of the contiguous U.S., with below-normal temperatures confined to the Pacific Northwest. Meanwhile, drierthan- normal weather along the Atlantic Coast and Four Corners Region will contrast with above-normal precipitation across the Northwest, Upper Midwest, and southern Plains.