The final full week of October 2023, week ending Oct. 28, featured warm, near summer-like temperatures, followed by a crash to more winter-like conditions at the end of the week. For the Corn Belt as a whole, the last full week of October was the second-warmest and eighth-wettest final full week of October in 30-plus years, according to data from WeatherTrends360. Cold and snow pushed out of the Pacific Northwest and Northern Rockies and into the northern Plains by the end of the week with several inches of snow falling in North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota.
The cold became established in the final days of October, and will carry into the first days of November 2023. Temperature trends in the Corn Belt will be a wholesale change from the week prior, with the first week of November — week ending Nov. 4 — trending the second-coldest in over 30 years, according to forecasts from WeatherTrends360. Snow showers will be possible across portions of the Corn Belt, although significant accumulations are not expected.
Cold will trickle down into the South with many areas likely seeing an end to the growing season in the final days of the October calendar month as freezing temperatures reach into the Texas Panhandle.
Speaking of Texas, beneficial rainfall fell across the state in the final week of October, which was the third-wettest final week of October in 30-plus years for Texas, according to WeatherTrends360. More rain will fall in the first week of November, which should help to ease drought conditions in the state.
Unfortunately, the rainfall will have a hard time making inroads into neighboring Louisiana, where exceptional drought — the highest drought category on the United States Drought Monitor’s scale — covers 68% of the state. The drought has caused a multitude of problems including low levels on the Mississippi River and wildfires. The low levels on the Mississippi River threaten barge traffic on the important waterway for grain shipments.