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Weatherwatch - September/October 2009

September 2009

An unusual weather pattern featured significantly above-normal temperatures in the North and West but cooler-than-normal conditions across the central and southern Plains. Monthly temperatures ranged from as much as 4°F below normal on the central Plains to more than 8°F above normal at a few locations on the northern Plains near the Canadian border. The polar jet stream lifted well north of the U.S.-Canadian border for much of September, keeping the Midwest largely free of frost and allowing a pair of slow-moving storms to generate persistently cloudy, wet weather across parts of the South.

September rainfall significantly eased drought in southern Texas but caused problems farther east. Rain was especially heavy from the lower Mississippi Valley to the southern Appalachians, with major flooding affecting parts of northern Georgia. In contrast, relatively dry weather prevailed in much of the Atlantic coastal plain. Meanwhile, much of the Midwest experienced a long stretch of warm, dry weather, following a summer with little heat. Warm, mostly dry conditions also covered the northern Plains. However, cool, wet weather plagued the remainder of the nation's mid-section, including the central and southern Plains. Elsewhere, generally warm, dry weather prevailed in the West, except for some cool weather and occasional showers in the central and southern Rockies.

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