Finger Lakes Drought Report — August 2, 2018
Rain will continue to be possible across the Finger Lakes Thursday and Friday, further helping to improve the drought status across the region.
The data for each week’s drought map is compiled by the US Drought Monitor and includes data only through Tuesday morning of the given week. Since heavy rain fell across the region last Tuesday and Wednesday, I skipped the drought report. Sure enough, last week’s map was unchanged from the week before, since the heavy rain was not included.
This week’s map, however, does include that heavy rain and additional rain that fell since. Most of the area did not see much rain Tuesday or Wednesday this week, so this week’s map is an accurate assessment of where we are at.
As a reminder, the data compiled to make these maps include over 20 sources. Precipitation amounts are only part of the equation, though undoubtedly it is a very important part.
Predrought (Level 0) conditions, which had spanned most of the Finger Lakes, has been removed from almost all of the Finger Lakes region. In all, the percent of New York State classified as either Level 0 or Level 1 dropped from 72.5% last week to 40.7% this week.
The Level 1-Moderate Drought status that had been introduced between Rochester and Buffalo has been cut back towards the west, but only slightly. These areas did not see as much rain over the last two weeks as other areas.
Rain amounts over the last two weeks can be seen on the map at the top of the post. The southeastern half of the region has seen 3-5 inches of rain over the last two weeks, with as much as 6-10 inches in the Elmira area. Rain amounts to the northwest were closer to two inches, with some areas seeing slightly more and others slightly less.
Showery Weather Through Friday
The weather will continue to be at least showery across the Finger Lakes for the next two days.
A stream of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico is over the area, though the core of the moisture is just east of the Finger Lakes.
A series of weather systems will continue to move along the western edge of this area of moisture. This train of systems is producing a nearly solid band of showers from the Finger Lakes south to the Gulf Coast this morning. Areas of heavier, more widespread rain are associated with each individual system.
As these systems lift north, the rain will fluctuate in how widespread and how heavy it is. Several rounds of widespread showers are possible today and Friday, though timing and placing the location of the rain is tricky due to the small nature of these systems.
Rain showers this morning should mostly be over the eastern Finger Lakes but should become more widespread this afternoon. Another batch of more widespread rain is possible Friday morning and early afternoon.
Heavier rain will likely miss the Finger Lakes, instead favoring areas further east where thunderstorms may develop during the afternoon hours Thursday and Friday. Most areas will see well under a half-inch of rain.
The southeastern Finger Lakes will have a chance at some heavier rain Friday night, but this remains uncertain.
Sunshine, Heat Return
After some morning clouds and perhaps a stray shower Saturday, the afternoon hours should turn sunny. Temperatures will be nice, topping out just above 80 degrees.
Sunday will be bright and sunny with just a few stray clouds during the afternoon.
Temperatures will turn warmer though, with highs in the mid and upper 80s. Heat index values could approach 90 degrees.
Monday and Tuesday will be the hottest days of this warm up. Upper 80s are likely with a couple of the typically warmer places around Rochester hitting 90 degrees. Temperatures should return to normal for the second half of next week.
This will be the final drought report unless conditions deteriorate again.
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