Intense Cold Grasps the Plains

Posted on 03/09/2017 10:19 AM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says on the Plains, frigid, breezy weather is maintaining stress on livestock, especially from Montana and the Dakotas southward to Colorado and Kansas. Very cold weather is also a concern with respect to winter wheat on the central High Plains that is not well established due to drought. This morning’s temperatures plunged below 0°F as far south as eastern Colorado and western Kansas.

In the West, USDA notes unsettled, showery weather prevails in northern and central California and the Great Basin. Cold conditions are easing across California and the Desert Southwest, but frigid conditions persist in the Rockies and environs. Temperatures from - 20 to - 30°F were noted this morning in parts of Wyoming.

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Satellite image with enhanced low cloud-top temperatures for 6 : 1 5 a .m. E S T (NOAA)

In the Corn Belt, USDA says a lake-effect snow squall event in underway, resulting in some travel disruptions downwind of the Great Lakes. Elsewhere, cold, dry, breezy weather prevails. This morning’s temperatures dipped below 10°F, accompanied by gusty winds, in the western most Corn Belt.

In the South, isolated rain showers are confined to southern Florida and the western Gulf Coast region. Throughout the region, much colder air is arriving on gusty winds, USDA reports.

In its outlook through Dec. 12, USDA says a cold weather pattern will remain in place through week’s end across much of the country. Early next week, however, markedly warmer air will overspread the southern U.S. in advance of Pacific storminess and another strong Canadian cold front. During the next five days, the heaviest precipitation will fall across northern California and the Northwest, with some locations receiving as much as 2 to 8 inches. Farther east, snow squalls will continue for several days downwind of the Great Lakes. Later, a series of fast-moving storms will produce periods of snow, mainly across the northern half of the U.S. By early next week, rain showers may return to the Southeast, USDA says.


 

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