More areas of Southwest Missouri have fallen into moderate drought, which is now the only part of the state dealing with significantly dry conditions. USDA’s weekly Drought Monitor indicates two new areas of moderate drought along the Kansas border, one loosely following the Elk River through McDonald County into western Barry County, and another covering western Bates and northwestern Vernon counties. The drought patch that appeared west of Joplin has split in two, with one portion in northwestern Jasper and southwestern Barton counties, and the other containing the western fourth of Newton County.

While drought conditions in Missouri have tripled in area over the past week, the total area in drought or abnormally dry conditions decreased. Areas of the Lead Belt that were abnormally dry received enough rain in the past week to exit that stage, as have eastern sections of Barry and Lawrence counties. However, abnormally dry conditions have spread into western Johnson and northwestern Henry counties in West Central Missouri, as well as northwestern Ray County north of the river.