Moving into the summer months, farmers can expect more storms across the Plains and continued drought in the West, Accuweather.com predicted Thursday in its annual look at the season ahead.
In the West and Southwest, dry conditions are expected to continue, even expanding into the Northwest. Temperatures are also expected to be above-normal, facilitating the droughty environment.
"The temperatures this summer will be dictated by where it's dry," AccuWeather.com Lead Long-Range Forecaster Paul Pastelok says. "We are going to see the 90s and 100s popping up pretty quickly in the valleys and even the 90s showing up in the big cities such as Seattle and Portland as we get into midsummer."
The minimal rainfall and overall lack of water will continue to hit the agricultural and livestock industries hard across the region, limiting fruit and nut production in the U.S.
Texas crops are also threatened, Accuweather predicts, as June and July are likely to bring little rain across the state. Most at risk is the lower valley of Texas, southeast Texas and the lower Mississippi Valley, Pastelok says.
A cooling trend, however, will set up across the Great Lakes. Significant ice cover will make water temperature slow to recover, impacting the atmosphere across the entire region, potentially a "bit on the cooler side," Pastelok says.
In addition to cooler weather for the area, the lagging lake temperatures could lead to less severe weather near the lakes.
Between the warmth expected in Texas and a cooling trend in the Great Lakes Region, more storms are likely to pop up over the Central U.S., Accuweather predicts.
Most at-risk are the Midwest, Ohio Valley, central Appalachians and into the Carolinas in June and July, due to the vast differences between the two weather patterns neighboring the areas.
Farther west, moisture from the Pacific Ocean will be ushered into the Rockies at times, helping to fuel numerous thunderstorms and threats for flash flooding in the area, Accuweather says.
"Early [tropical] development there will send some moisture up through New Mexico and into the Four Corners region, so they will get their dose of rain," Pastelok says. "They could have some flooding issues around Denver down towards Albuquerque during the course of the summer."
While rain and thunderstorms could lead to flash flooding in the Rockies, the increase in moisture should help to limit wildfires in the area. Some of the moisture, however, will move into the Plains and could combine with the offset upper high in the region to prepare yet another battleground for thunderstorms and showers throughout the summer.
Read the full report, Summer 2014: Series of Storms to Attack Central US, Mid-Atlantic.