Rain Won't Make a Big Dent in the Drought - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

Rain Won't Make a Big Dent in the Drought

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By Addie Olson

aolson@myabc5.com

@addieolson

This weekend's precipitation will help fill Iowa's lakes and rivers, but it won't make a huge dent in the drought. 

Even though it was hitting the ground in liquid form, the precipitation will not reach soil.

"Because we have some frost in the ground which varies from about 10 to 20 inches deep at this time, some of that water is just going to end up running into the river," said National Weather Service Meteorologist, Roger Vachalek. "It's not really going to help the drought situation that we had all through last fall."

Iowa needs temperatures in the 50s or 60s before the ground can absorb moisture.

"It doesn't really react quickly and so you need to warm up the air quite considerably," said Vachalek.

Last March was the hottest on record. That won't happen this year, but Iowa is on par to see the warm up the ground needs.

"The outlook for April through June does call for near normal to slightly above normal temperatures across the region and about near normal precipitations," said Vachalek.

While central Iowa is only going through "severe drought," the northwestern part of the state is classified as "extreme drought."

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