Widespread, locally heavy rains winding-down across parts of the Heartland

Across the Corn Belt, a slow-moving storm system is producing widespread showers, with mostly positive impacts on corn and soybeans.  Early Monday, the most significant rain is falling in the eastern Corn Belt, from Illinois to Ohio.  Over the last several days, however, substantial rainfall was focused across the western and southwestern Corn Belt, from South Dakota to Missouri, with some areas experiencing flash flooding.

On the Plains, below-normal temperatures have spread as far south as Oklahoma and Texas’ northern panhandle, accompanied by widely scattered showers and thunderstorms.  Intensely hot weather continues, however, across the remainder of Texas, where daily-record high temperatures for August 6 included 108°F in Abilene and San Angelo.  Texas’ heat wave, which has lasted nearly 2 months, has stressed crops and degraded rangeland and pasture conditions. 

In the South, heat and high humidity levels persist from the western Gulf Coast region to the southern Atlantic Coast.  Monday’s high temperatures will again reach the 100-degree mark in much of Texas and Louisiana, leading to further crop stress and drought intensification.  In contrast, a cold front’s passage is delivering cooler air (and a few showers) across the Ozark Plateau into Kentucky and Tennessee. 

In the West, a weak and erratic monsoon season in the Four Corners States has led to a recent increase in drought coverage, with the benefit of any showers more than offset by record-shattering heat.  On August 6, daily-record high temperatures included 114°F in Phoenix, Arizona, and 101°F in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  Phoenix last received measurable rain on March 22.  In contrast, much of the northern half of the West is experiencing below-normal temperatures, along with widely scattered showers.   

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