In the West, stormy weather in northern and central California is halting fieldwork but benefiting pastures, rangeland, and winter grains. Unsettled weather also prevails from the Pacific Northwest to the northern Rockies. In contrast, warm, dry weather is promoting fieldwork, including cotton harvesting, in the Desert Southwest.

On the Plains, mild, dry weather is maintaining significant stress on pastures, rangeland, and winter wheat. On November 25, both topsoil and subsoil moisture levels were rated more than 90% very short to short in Nebraska (96 and 98% very short to short, respectively) and Oklahoma (95 and 97%, respectively).

In the Corn Belt, chilly conditions linger in the Great Lakes region. Elsewhere in the Midwest, mild, dry weather favors final harvest efforts and off-season fieldwork activities.

In the South, mild air is starting to replace previously cool conditions. Late-season fieldwork includes winter wheat planting and cotton and soybean harvesting.

Outlook: A barrage of Pacific storms will continue into next week. In addition to what has already fallen, 5-day precipitation totals could reach 2 to 4 inches in the northern Rockies, 4 to 8 inches in the Pacific Northwest, and 6 to 12 inches in northern California. Farther east, however, unfavorably dry conditions will persist across the Plains and southern Atlantic States. Elsewhere, a pair of disturbances will produce generally light precipitation (up to one inch) during the weekend and early next week from the Mid-South into the Great Lakes and Northeastern States. Mild weather will continue to dominate the contiguous U.S. during the next several days; weekend temperatures will approach 70°F as far south as western South Dakota. Any lingering cold air will be confined to the nation’s northern tier. The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for December 5-9 calls for above-normal temperatures nationwide, except for cooler-than-normal conditions in the southern Atlantic region. Meanwhile, below-normal precipitation across much of the southern half of the U.S. will contrast with wetter-than-normal weather from the Pacific Northwest to the Great Lakes region. Dry conditions will be most likely across southern portions of the Rockies and Plains.