- Late February rains helped the drought conditions in central and eastern Oklahoma
- Mid-January through February 20th, the drought conditions continued to get worse
Winter is one of the higher grass fire times because of temperature swings, strong winds, and typically very dry conditions.
Before the rain in the back-half of February, the Drought Monitor got worse each week since mid-January.
The map from January 16 shows "Severe Drought" across southern and southeastern parts of Green Country. The majority (84%) of Oklahoma is considered to be in one of the drought categories. The remaining 16% is in the "Abnormally Dry" category. Before all the rain, nearly 100% of the state was in a drought category with more than 35% of the state in the top two categories.
After all the rain, just over 65% of the state was in a drought category, change of nearly 34%!!
The first monitor of March showed as the water continued to soak into the ground and more rain arrived, the drought almost disappeared in Green Country! Parts of Osage, Pawnee, Washington and Nowata counties are still in the lowest drought category, but the majority of the viewing area is clear of that.
That isn't the case in Northwest Oklahoma. For the first time since May of 2015, the worst category (Exceptional Drought) showed up in Oklahoma.
The latest Drought Monitor from mid-March doesn't show much change in Green Country but the Exceptional Drought category grew in size across the northwestern ports of the state.
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