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Midwest Weekly Highlights - March 1-7, 2021

Western Warmth

Temperatures were well above normal across the western third of the Midwest during the first week of March (Figure 1). Areas in western Iowa and western Minnesota were more than 9°F above normal, while areas through Wisconsin, Illinois and Missouri were anywhere from 1-7°F above normal. The Ohio River Valley wasn’t as warm, with most areas within 2°F of normal. Most of the warmth in the region came from unseasonably warm maximum temperatures (Figure 2) that were often more than 12°F above normal in Minnesota, western Iowa and northern Missouri.

Dry for Many

Precipitation amounts were very low across the Midwest during the week (Figure 3). Large areas in northern Missouri, northern Illinois, Iowa, southern Wisconsin and Lower Michigan had no precipitation during the period. The only areas with significant precipitation were in the Ohio River Valley, with some areas in Kentucky receiving more than two inches. The heavy rain in parts of Kentucky represented more than twice the normal amount (Figure 4). Meanwhile, light to moderate snow fell in parts of Minnesota, northern Wisconsin and the U.P. of Michigan (Figure 5). Some areas in the U.P. of Michigan had more than six inches as lake-effect snow increased amounts.