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Accumulated Precip Departure Snow Depth Average Temp Departure Minimum Temperature 11/16/2013 Forecast

Midwest Weekly Highlights - November 10-16, 2013

Dry Week Two

Precipitation totals were well below normal across the Midwest in the second week of November. The largest departures from normal were in southern Missouri where totals of just a few hundredths of an inch (Figure 1) left the area over an inch below normal for the week (Figure 2). Departures across the region decreased with distance from southern Missouri, with only parts of northern Michigan near normal. Snow fell in the northern reaches of the region for the second straight week but again totals were limited to a few inches. Further south, parts of Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, and most of Ohio picked up their first mensurable snow of the season on the 11th (Figure 3) and 12th (Figure 4). Snow in these areas was earlier than in most recent years with 2013, along with 2012 in some cities, having the earliest snowfall since the 1990s. Warmer temperatures late in the week melted away nearly all the Midwest snow on the ground (Figure 5).

Cooler Temperatures

Temperatures cooled slightly in the second week of November. Near normal temperatures in the upper Midwest were close to week one but further south, temperatures were 4° to 7° F below normal for much of the Midwest (Figure 6). Cold temperatures were widespread on the mornings of the 12th (Figure 7) and 13th (Figure 8) across the Midwest. Spencer Airport in northwest Iowa dropped below zero on the 12th marking the earliest subzero temperature in Iowa since 1991. The few daily temperature records set during the week were primarily record lows.

Severe Weather on 16th a Precursor

After a quiet first six days of the week, the 16th had a few reports of large hail in northwest Missouri and strong winds in northern Illinois (Figure 9). These storms were just the tip of the iceberg as a system moved into the Midwest on the 16th (Figure 10) and developed into a deadly tornado outbreak on the 17th (more details to come in week three summary).

Drought Slowly Easing

Midwest drought conditions continued to ease week by week. The percentage of the region in drought fell from about 23% to 19% according to the November 12 issue (Figure 11) of the US Drought Monitor. The last remaining area of Extreme Drought in Iowa was also eliminated from the map (Figure 12).

The Iowa Climatology Bureau also contributed to this report.