USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says in the Corn Belt, warm conditions are returning, following an extended period of cool weather. "For example, Des Moines, Iowa, last experienced an above-normal daily average temperature on Aug. 8," USDA adds. In addition, there is an elevated wildfire danger today in the middle Missouri Valley due to very warm, dry, breezy conditions, according to USDA.
In the West, USDA says a cold front crossing the northern Intermountain region is interacting with the Southwestern monsoon circulation, helping to generate scattered showers. "However, rain has largely bypassed the Northwest, where small grain harvest and wildfire containment efforts continue," USDA reports.
On the Plains, USDA says hot weather across the northern half of the region contrasts with relatively cool conditions in Oklahoma and Texas. "In Montana, isolated showers are causing minor small grain harvest delays," USDA adds.
In the South, USDA reports showery weather continues from the central Gulf Coast region to the southern Atlantic coastal plain, maintaining generally favorable conditions for pastures and immature summer crops. "Extremely dry conditions persist, however, in the Mid-South, including much of Arkansas and the Bootheel of Missouri," USDA elaborates.
In its outlook, USDA says during second half of the week, a surge of moisture associated with the monsoon circulation will interact with a pair of cold fronts crossing the Plains and Midwest. "Five-day rainfall totals could reach 1 to 3 inches from the Four Corners States into the middle Mississippi Valley," USDA adds. Meanwhile, mostly dry weather in the Mid-Atlantic and Northwestern states will contrast with possible 1- to 2-inch rainfall totals in the upper Midwest and along the Gulf and southern Atlantic Coasts, USDA reports. "By early next week, Tropical Storm or Hurricane Isaac will likely be in the vicinity of Florida’s peninsula, threatening the southern Atlantic states with the possibility of high winds, heavy rain, and a storm surge," according to USDA. Isaac’s strength upon reaching the southeastern U.S. will be partly dependent on prior interactions with the Greater Antilles, including Hispaniola and Cuba, USDA explains.