Missing Monsoon Has Led to Growing Drought, Record Heat in Southwestern U.S.

The Weather Channel

The monsoon in the Southwest has been generally inactive so far this year, which has led to an expansion of drought and record heat in the region.

The upper-level setup has not been ideal for ample rainfall to drench the Southwest or for heat relief to arrive this season, which lasts from June 15 through Sept. 30.

At this time of year, the area of high pressure is typically located in the southern Rockies or southern Plains, which allows plentiful moisture to flow into the Southwest from the Gulf of California and the Gulf of Mexico. This is not the situation that has taken shape recently.

This week, a ridge of high pressure over Mexico and the Southwest will center over Arizona and New Mexico. This setup is unfavorable for monsoon moisture to surge across the region. A wind flow from the west and southwest typically brings drier air over the region, and this is what is generally expected this week.

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