More seasonal weather across the Heartland; stormy weather returning to the Pacific West

Across the Corn Belt, cool, blustery weather prevails in the wake of a departing storm system.  Snow showers are occurring in many areas, although precipitation is light.  Friday morning’s low temperatures dipped to 0°F or below in many deeply snow-covered upper Midwestern locations, mainly across eastern North Dakota and northern and central Minnesota.

On the Plains, dry weather accompanies a warming trend.  Friday’s high temperatures should reach 50°F or higher as far north as central Montana, further eroding any remaining snow cover across the northern High Plains.  Deep snow cover remains, however, in the eastern Dakotas, where Friday’s high temperatures will generally range from 20 to 30°F.  Concerns persist with respect to winter wheat health across the central and southern Plains, due to the compounding effects of poor autumn establishment, exposure during the December cold outbreak, and long-term drought.

In the South, more than two dozen tornadoes, the majority in Alabama, were spotted on Thursday.  Early Friday, showers and thunderstorms are ending along the Atlantic Seaboard.  In tornado-affected areas, recovery efforts are underway amid cool, breezy conditions.  Sprinkles or snow flurries linger in the Tennessee Valley.

In the West, wet weather stretches from the Pacific Northwest to northern California.  With the return of wet, windy conditions, northern California faces another round of potential hazards, including flooding, debris flows, and power outages.  In addition, several central California waterways, including the Salinas River, are running high from earlier rainfall and are susceptible to worsening floods as rain returns later Friday.

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