Typical January weather Corn Belt; dry, milder air returns to parts of the Plains
Across the Corn Belt, generally light snow is falling east of the Mississippi River, mainly from Illinois to Ohio. Cold, dry weather covers the remainder of the Midwest. Friday morning’s low temperatures fell below -10°F as far south as northern Iowa. Including Friday, Des Moines, Iowa, has already reported 11 days this month with minimum temperatures of 0°F or below, the most in any January since 1997.
On the Plains, lingering cold weather is limited to the eastern Dakotas. Elsewhere, mild, dry, breezy weather is reversing small gains in topsoil moisture that had occurred earlier in the week, especially on the High Plains, during generally minor snowfall events. Friday’s high temperatures should reach 50°F as far north as the central one-third of Montana.
In the South, snow is developing across portions of the Tennessee Valley and the southern Appalachians, leading to local travel disruptions. Meanwhile, rain across the Deep South is heaviest in the western Gulf Coast region. A chilly weather pattern is in place throughout the region, except across southern Florida.
In the West, a month-long spell of mild, mostly dry weather is deflating hopes of further drought relief, as the region moves into the second half of its climatological winter wet season. More immediate concerns include gusty winds in portions of southern California and the Southwest, as well as air stagnation and fog in parts of the Northwest.