#Drought news (June 24, 2021): Increases in moderate, severe, extreme (and in a few cases, exceptional) drought coverage occurred in #Colorado, #Wyoming, #Utah, and #Montana

Click on a thumbnail graphic to view a gallery of drought data from the US Drought Monitor.

Click here to go to the US Drought Monitor website. Here’s an excerpt:

This Week’s Drought Summary

This week, Claudette, the third named tropical cyclone of the 2021 Atlantic Hurricane Season, made landfall in the central Gulf Coast and moved across the southeast United States. Results from Claudette’s rainfall included widespread improvement to drought conditions in North Carolina and South Carolina, as well as improved conditions in northern Florida and southern Georgia. Severe thunderstorms, including an EF3 tornado that hit western suburbs of Chicago, affected parts of northern Illinois, northern Indiana, northern Ohio, and southern Michigan on Sunday. While they caused widespread damage from wind and hail, the storms also delivered beneficial rainfall to areas suffering from moderate, severe, and extreme drought. Meanwhile, relatively dry weeks in both the Northeast and the West caused drought conditions to worsen, for the most part, in both regions…

High Plains

Rainfall was paltry in areas of ongoing drought and abnormal dryness in the High Plains region. The dry weather combined with warmer than normal temperatures in much of Nebraska, Kansas, and western South Dakota to lead to widespread worsening of drought and abnormal dryness in these areas. Extreme drought developed along the Missouri River in northern Nebraska and southern South Dakota, and severe and moderate drought expanded around this. Widespread extreme and exceptional drought still covered North Dakota, where adverse effects to crops and pastures from drought is widespread. In eastern Wyoming, short-term dryness and hot weather led to expansions of moderate, severe, and extreme drought as well…

Colorado one week Drought Monitor change map ending June 22, 2021.


The drought situation in the western United States continued to worsen after another mostly hot and dry week. A few areas of drought in south-central and southeast New Mexico saw some slight improvement due to effects from several rain and thunderstorm events in the last month. Unfortunately, widespread severe or worse drought continued in New Mexico, and conditions remained the same or worsened elsewhere. Increases in moderate, severe, extreme (and in a few cases, exceptional) drought coverage occurred in Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, and Montana. Severe drought also expanded in western Idaho. Wildfires and increasing wildfire danger, water restrictions, and damage to agriculture are very common across the West region…


Across the South, in areas not affected by Claudette, rain was relatively scarce. Temperatures were generally near normal in the eastern part of the region, while the Texas Panhandle and northwest Oklahoma were warmer than normal. Moderate drought developed near Woodward, Oklahoma, and slightly expanded in the northwest Texas Panhandle. Moderate and severe drought continued in southwest Oklahoma, and conditions ranging from abnormal dryness to exceptional drought (D4) continued along the Texas/Mexico border…

Looking Ahead

As of the afternoon of Wednesday, June 23, the National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center is forecasting widespread rain, some possibly heavy, to occur over the next five days from southeast New Mexico to the western Great Lakes. The largest totals, ranging from 2 inches to as much as 5 inches of rain, are forecast to fall from central Missouri to northern Illinois and southern Michigan. The northern edge of the area where the heaviest rains are predicted to fall is suffering from drought, and the precipitation could be beneficial if that occurs. For the next six to 10 days, the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center’s forecast favors warmer than normal temperatures extending from the Pacific Coast to the northern Great Plains, as well as in the Northeast, while an area of cooler than normal temperatures is favored in between, stretching from near the Arizona/New Mexico border to Iowa to central Florida. In Alaska, above normal precipitation and near or below normal temperatures are favored in the west, while drier than normal weather and warmer than normal temperatures are favored in the eastern part of Alaska. The eight to 14 day outlook for the Lower 48 and for Alaska paints a similar picture, though the eight to 14 day outlook features a higher probability for above normal precipitation in the central Great Plains.

US Drought Monitor one week change map ending June 22, 2021.

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