USDA: Strong Cold Front Brings Thunderstorms, Snow & Frigid Temps

January 30, 2013 02:12 AM
 

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says in the Corn Belt, a strong cold front is bringing an end to the recent spell of record-setting warmth. "Heavy rain and locally severe thunderstorms are pushing across eastern portions of the region, while snow is falling behind the front in the western Corn Belt," USDA elaborates.

In the West, USDA reports locally heavy rain persists along the northern Pacific Coast, while snow continues to improve spring runoff prospects across the northern and central Rockies.

On the Plains, USDA says an arctic air mass is settling over northern portions of the region, where today’s highs will average up to 35°F below normal. "Snow is falling over eastern portions of Kansas, Nebraska, and South Dakota, boosting moisture reserves for pastures and livestock," USDA explains.

In the South, USDA says severe weather is possible today in the Southeast ahead of an advancing cold front. Drier, albeit colder weather is settling over the western Gulf Coast, USDA adds.

In its outlook, USDA says a strong cold front will bring an end to the recent spell of record-setting warmth across the eastern half of the nation. "Unseasonably warm, humid conditions ahead of the front will fuel heavy showers and thunderstorms — some severe — as the front marches toward the East Coast," USDA explains. Meanwhile, an area of snow will fall in the colder air behind the front from the east-central Plains into the northern Great Lakes, according to USDA. "Farther north, an arctic front will usher bitter cold air into the north-central U.S., with daytime highs expected to average 20°F to 30°F below normal over the northern Plains and upper Midwest Thursday into Friday," USDA reports. This bitterly cold air mass will modify as it moves east, with a return of abnormal warmth expected over the Plains by week’s end, USDA continues. Out west, cold, snowy conditions in the Rockies and Cascades will gradually give way to drier, somewhat milder conditions, according to USDA.

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