After the March flooding across the Heartland, it's hard to believe we'd be running short on rain any time soon, but less than half a year later, that was becoming the case. The U.S. Drought Monitor classified the Omaha metro and surrounding areas as "Abnormally Dry" as of its most recent update from August 6. While this is the lowest level of the drought scale it uses, it was a sign of the recent dry weather.
Although we had rain chances multiple days last week, most of that was very spotty, with very few areas benefiting from the rain. Area farmers and home owners started to hope for one of those spotty showers or storms to hit their property... and for most, that wish came true either Sunday morning or Monday morning. Many areas even got in on both rounds of heavy rain.
Sunday, rain totals climbed over 3 inches at Omaha's Eppley Airfield. Across the river in Council Bluffs, the rain was too much for the drainage system, flooding some homes. As you moved away from Omaha in nearly any direction, rain totals became smaller and smaller, with some cities only seeing about a quarter of an inch or less.
The 3.19 inches of rain at Eppley put the city's total for August up to 3.21 inches. More importantly, it took us from more than an inch below average for the month to more than 1.5 inches above average for the month.
In case that wasn't enough rain to green your grass or crops, Monday morning brought another round of heavy rain and lightning. This time, Omaha let other cities take the higher totals, with Eppley picking up closer to a third of an inch.
Instead, cities generally north and west of Omaha saw the highest totals, with Norfolk and Columbus both seeing well over one inch. The heaviest rain moved fast enough to avoid any flash flooding.
With the good soaking rainfall the last two mornings, we will likely be taken out of "Abnormally Dry" conditions when the latest drought monitor is released later this week.