A few storms this U.S. Drought Monitor Period brought moderate precipitation to the Southeast and Atlantic, as well as into the northern Rockies, while some precipitation made it as far south as north-central California. Only pockets of improvement were noted across the East coast, however, while several one-category degradations were noted in the Central Plains.
In the Northeast and mid-Atlantic regions, rain and some snow in Pennsylvania and New Jersey resulted in one category improvements and some trimming of the drought areas. Similar conditions were noted in North Carolina and Virginia, where one-category improvements appeared.
Moderate precipitation was noted in portions of the Southeast and 4-6 inches of precipitation fell in north-central Florida. In east-central Georgia, moderate drought was expanded slightly southwestward.
One-category degradations also appeared in small sections of Central and Southern Alabama.
No adjustments were made to the drought depiction this week the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys, but subsoil moisture levels are becoming a concern in western Kentucky. However, a wet October and decent top soil moisture held off drought changes.
Cold, dry conditions prevailed across the Mississippi Valley as deficits of 4-6 inches have mounted over the last 90 days across in northeast Minnesota. As a result, abnormal dryness was expanded in the region.
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Over the eastern halves of the Dakotas, and into north-Central Kansas, dryness has also expanded, requiring a one-category change.
Continuing dryness/drought across New Mexico prompted some revisions in this week's depiction in several pockets across the state, though dryness has not expanded in drought areas present in the rest of the Southwest up through the Rockies.
Despite respectable amounts of precipitation falling across the northern half of California, no changes were rendered to the California drought depiction this week. Though the rainy season is underway, only a few scattered locales in far northern portions of the state depicting marginal surpluses.
Snowpack is just starting to form, and is below what is normally expected for Dec. 1, while reservoirs are just starting to receive more water than is being lost, which is later than would normally occur. Typically, about one-half of California's annual precipitation is expected to fall during the December-February season. However, more than this is needed to offset the accumulated deficits, according to the Drought Monitor.
Source: Anthony Artusa, NOAA/ The U.S. Drought Monitor is produced in partnership between the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the United States Department of Agriculture, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.