In the West, very cool weather accompanies the latest round of stormy weather into California. Cool, rainy weather is slowing California’s fieldwork and crop development, but high-elevation snow continues to improve summer water-supply prospects. Elsewhere in the West, cool, mostly dry weather prevails.
On the Plains, rain lingers in parts of the Dakotas but has mostly ended across the remainder of the nation’s mid-section. Pastures and winter grains on the northern and southern High Plains are benefiting from recent soil moisture improvements, but both regions would welcome additional rain.
In the Corn Belt, a band of showers and thunderstorms stretches across western portions of the region from North Dakota to Missouri. The rain is providing highly beneficial moisture in preparation for summer crop planting. Across the remainder of the Midwest, a period of cool weather is coming to an end.
In the South, cool weather lingers in the Atlantic Coast States. Elsewhere, dry weather and warmer conditions are promoting fieldwork and crop development.
Outlook: A pair of storms—currently over Nebraska and northern California, respectively—will continue to influence weather patterns during the next several days. During the weekend, a significant outbreak of severe thunderstorms can be expected from the central and southern Plains into the western Corn Belt. Meanwhile, there will be an enhanced risk of wildfire activity from the Southwest to the southern High Plains. During the next 5 days, rainfall totals could reach 1 to 3 inches from the eastern Plains into the western Corn Belt, while 2- to 4-inch amounts may occur in the western and central Gulf Coast States. Little or no rain will fall, however, along the Atlantic Seaboard and from the Southwest to the southern High Plains. The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for April 18-22 calls for near- to above-normal temperatures nationwide, except for cooler-than-normal conditions across the nation’s northern tier from the Pacific Northwest to the upper Great Lakes region. Meanwhile, near- to belownormal precipitation across the majority