Weekend forecast improvement
We've certainly had worse weekends in the past few weeks. Saturday will be the better of the two days. Showers appear to hold off until afternoon for western and southern areas, and won't affect northern areas until later in the day. Sunday will be damp at times with on and off showers through the day into the evening. A generally dry pattern continues with below normal rainfall continues.
The drought area spreads
For those who have been reading along in the past few weeks, this chart from Drought Monitor should come as no surprise. I've been talking about it ad nauseam like an old 33 RPM record on a turntable with a reverse skip on it. I keep looking for indications the rain outlook going to turn around, but I am not finding it.
Drought Monitor's map looks in close similarity to National Weather Service recorded data and estimates. A good chunk of northern Maine is running at or slightly above normal since spring began, with western and southern areas dealing with a deficit. With the zonal pattern the area has been in, the results of that in this chart aren't that surprising. As with Alberta clipper systems in winter, the north benefits from moisture from Hudson Bay and/or the Great Lakes and/or the St. Lawrence River, or any combination thereof. Southern areas hardly get anything.
A look at the past 30 days show much of the state in an abnormally dry pattern, with southern and western areas seeing the driest of the conditions. Outside of what rainfall came in the shower activity this past Monday, that has been pretty much it for southern areas. Northern areas have benefited with shots of shower activity here and there, but they could certainly use more rain as growing season kicks into high gear.
Weekend showers to help
The Weather Prediction Center arm of the National Weather Service is staying consistent with it's projected rain outlook through the weekend. Only slight alterations are a bit less for the Allagash and a bit more for Washington County. The important part of this to consider is this weekends weather activity will be "scattered showers" which brings an element of pot luck with them. Some areas may see more, others less. I am still sticking with the general rough idea of 1/2" of rainfall as a basis for much of the state. We'll take every drop we can get at this point, and won't be fussy about it.
Dry times continue into early July
Every time I look at the long term outlook at times in the past couple months, the idea remains the same. Future rainfall estimates continue to appear on the lean side. As we head further into summer, expect that to continue. Conservation of ground water resources remain strongly encouraged and should continue indefinitely.
I would appreciate any of your reports of your water situation, along with any photos of rivers, lakes, brooks and streams you come across that are feeling the pain of the drought. You can post them on Facebook or send me a tweet.
Keep in mind fire danger will also be an on going concern. As the state fills up with summer residents and visitors, the temptation will be to enjoy the great weather by setting up a camp fire. Please take all precautions necessary, stay in touch with the weather forecast and check in with Maine Forest Service, local fire department, or park ranger for burn permits and regulations.
Regional outlook through Tuesday
The north country should keep patchy frost in mind Thursday night into Friday morning for well protected areas. Showers appear to hold off for northern and eastern areas Saturday until late in the day. All areas will be dealing with off and on showers for Sunday, along with a risk of a thunderstorm for western and southern areas in the afternoon. Northern and eastern areas see showers continue into Monday. Temperatures begin to build as we head into the middle part of next week.