Latest drought monitor over the midwest


Monthly drought outlook


One Week US Drought Monitor Class Change


Amount of precipitation needed to end drought


Drought severity index by division


4 month precipitation departures


Vegetation Drought Response Index (VegDRI), complete, Iowa


Standard precipitation index


USDA Topsoil Moisture by Short-VeryShort


Week Date None Abnormally Dry Moderate Severe Extreme Exceptional DSCI
Current 2022-01-18 49.44 50.56 13.70 0.00 0.00 0.00 64
Last Week 2022-01-11 49.42 50.58 13.73 0.00 0.00 0.00 64
Start of Calendar Year 2021-12-28 48.80 51.20 12.81 0.00 0.00 0.00 64
Three Months Ago 2021-10-19 22.97 77.03 45.06 14.05 0.00 0.00 136
Start of Water Year 2021-09-28 24.40 75.60 55.16 18.26 0.00 0.00 149
One Year Ago 2021-01-12 39.67 60.33 36.20 17.59 4.03 0.00 118


A winter storm impacted areas from the northern Plains, to the Midwest, into the Southeast and then up the east coast during the period. For many areas, this was the first time that heavy snow occurred in these regions as many have brought up “snow drought” in areas of the country where snow has been minimal. From the Missouri River west, there was very little precipitation for the week. Temperatures were warmest over the northern Rocky Mountains and Plains where departures were 10-15 degrees above normal. Cooler temperatures dominated the East as departures were 5-10 degrees below normal.


Over the next 5-7 days, it is anticipated that cooler than normal conditions will dominate the eastern half of the United States, with the greatest departures along the Canadian border in the Great Lakes region where departures of 12-15 degrees below normal are anticipated. Warmer than normal conditions over the West and northern Rocky Mountains with departures of 6-9 degrees above normal could be observed. Some precipitation is expected over the Pacific Northwest and into the Rocky Mountains. The wettest locations are expected to be in the South and Southeast and into the Mid-Atlantic where up to an inch or more of precipitation could be expected.

The 6-10 day outlooks show the high probability of colder than normal temperatures over the eastern half of the country, especially from the Great Lakes to the Mid-Atlantic into New England. It is anticipated that below normal precipitation will impact much of the country centered on the Great Basin and the Midwest. There are above normal chances for above normal precipitation in much of Alaska, central Rocky Mountains and along the Gulf Coast.


Precipitation was mixed in the region this week with the western extent of the Midwest seeing the most while other areas remained dry. The greatest precipitation for the week was from southern Minnesota into Iowa, where over 200% of normal precipitation occurred with a winter storm. Outside of Michigan, most of the rest of the region was warmer than normal with temperatures up to 3-6 degrees above normal. Michigan had temperatures that were 3-6 degrees below normal. Even with the influx of moisture to some areas associated with the winter storm, it brought the first big snow event of the season and stopped a trend of dryness. Only a few changes to the overall drought status were made this week, with some expansion of abnormally dry conditions in northern Illinois and southwest Missouri while some improvement took place along the Missouri and Illinois border.