The National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center (CPC) forecast for February through April calls for above-normal temps across the Central and Southern Plains, as well as much of the South and along the East Coast. Cooler-than-normal temps are expected from Washington to Minnesota.
Above-normal precip is expected across the Pacific Northwest and Northern Plains and into the eastern Corn Belt, with equal chances of normal, below- and above-normal precip expected in Nebraska and Iowa southward. Below-normal precip is expected in the Southeast and New Mexico.
CPC Outlooks for February through April:
In its outlook for February, the CPC calls for above-normal temps and below-normal precip across the Southwest, including Texas, with above-normal temps expected to extend along the Gulf Coast and into the Southeast. Cooler-than-normal temps and above-normal precip are expected in the Northern Plains, with above-normal precip also expected across the eastern Corn Belt.
CPC Outlooks for February:
Below, we compare the Seasonal Drought Outlook to the current Drought Monitor:
The Seasonal Drought Outlook notes while beneficial precip has been seen in western drought areas, dry conditions have continued from the southeastern Plains to the Mississippi Valley, resulting in the spread of drought. It also says the near-term forecast is favorable for drought improvement across the West and across the Rockies and north-central Plains, resulting in additional drought reductions for Colorado and western Kansas.
"Across the East, a slow-moving area of low pressure is expected to bring heavy precipitation, particularly to the Deep South and southern Appalachians. Therefore, drought improvements and removal are forecast from northern Louisiana to southwestern Virginia," states the outlook. "Longer-range forecasts generally favor near to above-median precipitation for the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, so continued slow improvement of drought conditions is anticipated from northern Virginia through Maine."