THURSDAY, MAY 11 - THIS SUMMER'S PRECIPITATION OUTLOOK


Tonight we'll check the National Weather Service's long-range outlook for rainfall this summer. Here it is for the whole country, in map form, along with the web site where you can get these forecasts.

Here's how to interpret the map. Let's start with us. We're in a zone, along with much of the east, Deep south, and northwest, marked "CL", which stands for "Climatology". This is the forecasters' way of saying "take your pick" - that is, wetter-than-average, near-average, and drier-than-average conditions are all equally likely.

In areas of the midwest inside the brown lines with the capital B, forecasters are leaning toward below-average rainfall. In the area of the southwest encircled in green with the capital A, they're leaning toward above-average rain. In both areas, the inner curve is labeled with a "5" - indicating just a 5% lean in that direction - and that's not a very high level of confidence.

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