In the West, cold, mostly dry weather prevails, although scattered snow showers dot the Rockies and the northern Intermountain region. In Arizona, the cotton harvest was 98% complete by January 2.

On the Plains, snow in advance of an Arctic cold front is heaviest across east-central portions of the region. Snow is helping to insulate winter wheat in many areas, but fields on the southern High Plains remain exposed to weather extremes. On the northern Plains, this morning’s temperatures generally ranged from 0 to -20 degrees F.

In the Corn Belt, snow is overspreading areas west of the Mississippi River. Dry weather prevails across the remainder of the Midwest.

In the South, a significant winter storm is causing widespread travel and electrical disruptions. A variety of winter storm warnings and advisories remain in effect from the Delta eastward to Georgia and the Carolinas due to accumulations of ice and snow.

Outlook: Separate storm systems over the central and southeastern U.S. will merge by mid-week near the Mid-Atlantic Coast. For today, wintry precipitation will continue in the Southeast and spread from the central Plains into the western Corn Belt. By Tuesday, snow will reach the eastern Corn Belt and the Mid-Atlantic States. Substantial mid-week snow will affect the northern Mid-Atlantic coastal plain and southern New England. Very cold air will trail the storms, although temperatures should remain above 32 degrees F in peninsular Florida and southern Texas. However, sub-zero readings can be expected as far south as the central Plains and the middle Mississippi Valley. The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for January 15-19 calls for near- to below-normal temperatures nationwide, except in California and across the Deep South. Cold weather will be most likely in the north-central U.S. Meanwhile, above-normal precipitation across the northern half of the U.S. will contrast with drier-than-normal conditions from southern California to the southern Plains.