It’s no secret it has been dry this month. Heat and sunshine have ruled the ninth month of the year for the most part and that has gotten the attention of the United States Department of Agricultural. Every Thursday the nationwide drought monitor is released by the USDA and this morning (9/15) most of our area appeared on the list. The USDA has five categories ranging from “abnormally dry” to “exceptional drought.” We are “just” in the abnormally dry (yellow on the map below) category as of right now, but that could change if we don’t start seeing some improvements.
On the year we are actually more than 4 inches above normal in the moisture department at the Roanoke Regional airport, but lately we haven’t been able to buy rain.
The Climate Prediction Center also released it’s Drought Tendency map which highlights the direction of a drought or future drought. Most of our area is also expected to achieve drought status as the next several months push on. Talking about the driving forces for the upcoming winter is for another time, but with El-Nino gone and it’s counterpart La-Nina no longer expected to develop we could be in limbo in terms of getting moisture into this part of the country.
In the short term our 13 day rainless stretch looks like it could come to an end as cold front swings by for the second half of Sunday. Dry weather returns though for much of the upcoming work wee beyond Monday morning.