USDA: Rain & Snow is Falling in the Upper Midwest & Northern Plains

May 1, 2013 03:43 AM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says in the Corn Belt, stormy weather is returning to the upper Midwest, where a mixture of rain and snow is falling from Nebraska to southern Minnesota. "In contrast, warm, dry weather prevails along and southeast of a line from Missouri to Michigan, allowing for a limited amount of corn planting to begin or resume," USDA explains.

In the West, USDA says warmth is limited to areas from California to the southern Rockies, where the risk of wildfires remains elevated. "Meanwhile, cold weather prevails across the Intermountain West and interior Northwest, where a variety of frost and freeze warni ngs are in effect," USDA elaborates. Snow lingers in Wyoming and neighboring areas, USDA adds.

On the Plains, USDA reports a developing storm is centered over Texas’ northern panhandle. "Dramatically cold air is overspreading the central and southern Plains, following Tuesday’s high temperatures that reached 97°F in Amarillo, Texas, and 91°F in Dodge City, Kansas," USDA details. Farther north, a band of rain and snow has developed from eastern Colorado into Nebraska and southeastern South Dakota, according to USDA.

In the South, USDA reports showers are confined to the central Gulf Coast States and southern Arkansas. "Elsewhere, dry weather favors an acceleration of fieldwork, although a cluster of showers is approaching Florida’s peninsula," USDA continues.

In its outlook, USDA says a developing storm over the nation’s mid-section will become cut off from atmospheric steering, causing the system to drift eastward into the Mid-South by week’s end and the Southeast early next week. "Five-day precipitation totals could reach 2 to 4 inches across the east-central Plains, upper Midwest, lower and middle Mississippi Valley, and eastern Gulf Coast region," USDA explains. In addition, late-season snow will fall from the central Rockies into the upper Midwest, USDA continues. "In contrast, little or no precipitation will occur in the Northeast and west of the Rockies," USDA reports. Unusually cool air will trail the storm, resulting in widespread freezes on May 2-3 as far south as the southern High Plains, USDA details. Warm will linger, however, from the eastern Corn Belt into the Northeast, according to USDA.

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