Wet as we start off the period with significant rains for the first two days of the holiday weekend. The second of 2 waves from this event moves through Sunday, and that will bring two-day rain totals at .5”-1.5” with coverage at 80%. Rains Sunday will not be lighter or have lower coverage than Saturday rains…this will just be an all-out rain event for most of the state The map at right shows rain totals from Saturday morning through Sunday midnight.
Monday remains dry statewide, with sun working through the clouds fairly easily. This comes as the weekend system is more “frontal” based, and sweeps through with a sharp clearing line, unlike the slow spinning cutoff low that we had yesterday. A good chunk of the state will see this dryness continue into Tuesday. However, we do have some scattered showers that want to work through with a minor trough for Tuesday too. This may bring a few hundredths to at most .2” of rain to about 20-30% of the state. We really are looking to keep this moisture skewed toward the northern half or third of the state.
Mostly dry then for Wednesday through Friday. We would like to add Saturday as well, but we have 2 basic concerns about this period. First, models differ on timing, but all have at least a little bit of scattered shower action moving through the state in the midst of that dry stretch…whether its Wednesday Night-Thursday, or Thursday night into early Friday. Moisture is not much, but it gives us some pause. Then, a bigger concern is scattered showers that develop Friday night and hold into Saturday. Some models blow that up into big time thunderstorms over the southern third of the state, others suggest it all may fall apart and not amount to anything. Here is our take. In most other years, we would trend drier in this forecast. However, the atmosphere is wet. This year has been top 5 in terms of moisture for the April-May period. Our soils are soaked, and that along with everything else allows us to see rains develop a little easier. Also, with us being behind and really needing a number of days of dryness to count on…we are not going to promise anything. You should be ready to go if you can – we end up getting missed by all the minor chances in the 4-day stretch from Wednesday through Saturday. But…do not count on completely dry period either…we think that is unlikely. It will be mostly dry, but not completely dry.
In the extended window, we have our next strong front working in later on the 4th, bringing rains through the 5th and 6th. These rains can combine to bring 1”-2” to the state with coverage at 100%. But, behind that front, we should put together a nice dry stretch again, with no precipitation for the rest of the extended period, the 7th through the 10th, and likely the 11th too.
Weeks 3 & 4:
For week 3, we look for temps to be below normal with moisture above normal. This will be triggered mostly by a strong front for the 12th-14th. That low likely moves very slowly through the great lakes and the cold front extends all the way back into the MO Valley, slowly moving east. This can bring at least .5”-1” spots of rain and likely more, with coverage near 100% of the state. An upper-level ridge will build behind that frontal passage for late in the period, around the 16th, 17th and 18th. In week 4, temps swing to above normal levels and precipitation is mostly normal. The upper-level ridge from late in week 3 will hold right through into the start of week 4. In addition, a very strong frontal complex in the plains creates strong southwest winds ahead of it, which will allow an uninterrupted flow of much warmer air into the region. It will likely be very windy several days in week 4. That front finally works out of the plains and into the state late in the period, around the 24th-25th. Right now, the front looks like it may lose a lot of its punch in the plains, but we still think it would have the potential to trigger stronger thunderstorms, severe weather, and maybe up to half an inch of rain.
Obligatory soil temps map. It’s the end of May…soil temps are not really a story anymore. Granted…this map shows soil temps about 5-7 degrees cooler than last week, as a result of the rain, but still, we are well above needed thresholds for crop growth and development. But, it’s a fun and colorful map to look at and shows you where we have progressed to as of this past Thursday.