Drought news (June 2, 2022): “Rain and mountain snow was also widespread in #Colorado recently, leading to improving conditions in both the Rocky Mountains and high plains”

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

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

High Plains

Large-scale improvements to drought conditions and abnormal dryness took place in the High Plains region this week, where widespread rain and mountain snow fell as several storm systems moved through the region. Extreme drought was removed from central Kansas and northeast Nebraska, where soil moisture improved and short- and long-term precipitation deficits lessened. Widespread improvements were also made in South Dakota, where precipitation deficits improved. Rain and mountain snow was also widespread in Colorado recently, leading to improving conditions in both the Rocky Mountains and high plains. Heavy precipitation amounts fell in northern Wyoming and southern Montana, leading to a large swath of improved conditions. Lingering long-term abnormal dryness in western North Dakota also continued to wane, while moderate drought was removed entirely from the west end of the state after precipitation this week. Despite the improving drought conditions, agricultural problems continued in the region. Winter wheat harvest potential in Kansas was reduced by over 25%, while conditions are too wet in parts of Montana and the Dakotas for planting spring wheat…

Colorado Drought Monitor one week change map ending May 31, 2022.


Localized heavy precipitation fell across maily the northern half of the West region this week, leading to a few areas of improvements. Drought areas in southwest and northeast Oregon, central Idaho, northern Nevada, and northern Utah saw some local improvements as drought indices responded to recent precipitation. As mentioned in the High Plains section, widespread improvements were made in southern Montana after heavy precipitation fell there, with localized amounts of 5 inches or more. Recent precipitation also allowed for some improvements in northeast Montana. Despite these improvements, widespread severe, extreme, and some exceptional drought continued across the West. Impacts from the widespread drought include reduced grazing for cattle in New Mexico due to wildfire closures in national forests and hydropower production concerns at reservoirs in Nevada and California due to very low water levels…


Widespread drought conditions continued in western portions of Oklahoma, Texas, southern Texas, and southern Louisiana this week, though some improvements were noted in Texas and Oklahoma. Recent heavy rainfall from far northern Oklahoma into parts of south-central Oklahoma and west-central and central Texas lessened precipitation deficits enough to allow for improved drought conditions. The ongoing drought area over western Oklahoma and the eastern Texas Panhandle is now long-term, reflecting the impact of recent rain events. Tuesday night’s thunderstorms in the Southern Plains was not accounted for on this week’s map, as it fell after the Tuesday morning cutoff. This will be considered for next week’s map. Despite recent rainfall, problems continued with winter wheat and cotton growth in the southern Great Plains. Finally, a small area of short-term drought in southeast Tennessee was removed after heavy rain this week…

Looking Ahead

Through the evening of Monday, June 6, the National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center is forecasting moderate precipitation amounts in parts of the Northwest, with some mountainous areas forecasted to see over an inch of precipitation. Dry conditions are expected to continue in the Southwest. Widespread rain exceeding one-half inch is expected to have fallen across northern Texas, including parts of the Panhandle, and much of Oklahoma. Elsewhere in the Great Plains, some precipitation is forecast to fall from southwest North Dakota southward, with amounts generally varying between 0.25 and 0.75 inches. Heavier amounts are possible along the Minnesota/Iowa border. In the eastern U.S., generally drier conditions are expected, though some parts of the Ohio Valley and Northeast and the Appalachians are expected to receive at least a half-inch of rain. Finally, a tropical disturbance is forecast to move across southern Florida, which may deliver rain amounts from 3 to 10 inches, especially across the southern half of the Florida Peninsula. For the latest on this system, please refer to forecasts from your local National Weather Service office and any advisories from the National Hurricane Center.

US Drought Monitor one week change map ending May 31, 2022

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