The nation's weather

AP News
Posted: Apr 05, 2011 5:04 AM
The nation's weather

Severe storms continue sweeping across the Eastern half of the nation Tuesday, while wet and snowy conditions persist in the Northwest.

A low pressure system and associated cold front that brought heavy rain, damaging winds, large hail and even tornadoes to the Midwest and down the Mississippi River Valley will continue moving eastward. On Tuesday, the strong frontal boundary will stretch from the Northeast and down the East Coast, kicking up more strong storms. Periods of heavy rain are expected and strong winds will develop along the East Coast, and if storms turn severe, they will most likely be contained to the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic states. Rainfall totals will range around 1 inch, with up to 2 inches likely in areas of thunderstorm development.

Behind this system, a ridge of high pressure builds over the Central U.S., stretching from the Plains and over the Mississippi River Valley. This will bring plenty of sunshine in addition to warm temperatures, with highs ranging from the 50s in the North, to the 80s and 90s in the South.

Farther West, a low pressure system spinning in the Gulf of Alaska pushes a trough into the Pacific Northwest. This produces periods of heavy rain showers, with high elevation snow showers across Oregon and Washington. This system will quickly move into the Northern Plains, bringing plenty of snow with it. A cold front is expected to extend southward, sweeping through northern California and into Nevada. This will kick up some lighter rain showers with light snow in the Northern Sierras.

Temperatures in the Lower 48 states Monday ranged from a morning low of 1 degree at Yellowstone, Wyo., to a high of 100 degrees at McAllen, Texas.