According to the updated National Drought Monitor, drought covers around 28.9% of the contiguous U.S., nearly a one-percentage-point increase from last week, with expansion noted across the Northern Plains.
Across what's considered the "High Plains," the monitor reflects a three-percentage-point expansion of drought from last week, concentrated in North Dakota and Wyoming. "In North Dakota, lack of snow cover, and 30-day and 60-day PNP ACIS (Applied Climate Information System) maps warranted a generous expansion of D0 conditions from its current location northward to the Canadian border (as far east as Rolette County), and as far west as the Missouri River. This is also consistent with neighboring dryness/drought across the border in southeastern Saskatchewan and southern Manitoba," it states.
Meanwhile, only scattered drought can be found in Texas, as 97.66% of the area is drought-free. A small area of drought also lingers in central Kansas, but is absent from the heart of the Corn Belt.