US: Midwest weather latest

(Freese Notis) -- Rainfall coverage continued to expand in the northwestern Corn Belt over the past 24 hours. Areas of South Dakota to the north of Interstate 90, much of the southern third of Minnesota, southwestern Wisconsin, much of the northeastern half of Iowa, the southern half of Nebraska, and northern Kansas are the areas that have done quite well with rainfall (i.e. a half inch or better) over the past 24 hours. In that area in can find rainfall totals of more than an inch for Mason City, Spencer, and Cedar Rapids; and more than two inches for Des Moines, Ames, Fort Dodge, and Waterloo.

Things have quieted down quite a bit early on this Friday, with most of the rain found over northeastern Kansas. However, with the frontal boundary responsible for this week's rain still well to the north on the Corn Belt and still just slowly sagging southward, the rainfall chances are far from over. There are rainfall chances for the entire Corn Belt, but especially the northwestern half, for today right through the end of the weekend and severe weather looks possible on any of those days. Flash flood watches have been posted for southeastern Iowa and southeastern Wisconsin in anticipation of more heavy rain for those areas.

We have not gotten all of the northwestern Corn Belt the rain that they need (places like Sioux Falls, Norfolk, and Sioux City have recorded little so far this week) but at least that area still does have more near-term rainfall chances.

Models are not in good agreement on next week's outlook, but it is highly unlikely that it will be completely dry and I will maintain my contention that the best rains shift to more northeastern parts of the region for especially the middle and latter parts of next week. Temperatures will continue to be warm, but we are still probably a week away from any potential for extreme heat. Middle 80s to low 90s will be seen on most days from today through next Thursday. I still target the July 25th time frame as one where temperatures may go to more extreme levels, but again will emphasize that to be the case mainly for western and northwestern parts of the region.