Iowa Drought On Doorstep of Cedar Rapids & Iowa City
The rains have been plentiful in the corridor so far this summer. However, much of Iowa is officially suffering from a drought, some of it severe.
The picture is a bleak one in parts of the north central U.S.. According to Drought Monitor, parts of North and South Dakota and Montana are all suffering from either an extreme or exceptional drought.
In the state of Iowa, things are getting worse. In the last two weeks, a time period that's seen Cedar Rapids and many other areas receive a lot of rain, the percentage of the state under drought conditions has actually increased. According to Drought, at this time a year ago, only 3.59% of Iowa was suffering from a moderate drought. This year, the number is 34.74% (tan areas in the map below). The percentage of Iowa that's abnormally dry was 30.68 percent a year ago. This year, it's more than double that... 64.01% (yellow areas below). Thankfully, only 1.66% of Iowa is suffering from severe drought at this time, but extreme south central Iowa (orange on map below) could certainly use some rain.
What's the forecast hold for the near future? There's, literally, no mention of rain for that part of Iowa in the seven-day forecast from the National Weather Service. Unfortunately, that likely means increasing uneasiness for some corn and soybean farmers in the state of Iowa. The impact won't stop there, though. Cattle farmers need pasture now and their hay fields to produce for this winter. Rain is vital and let's hope they get some soon.