Recent wet weather — including a short-lived snowstorm — helped move Halifax County down a level in drought severity.
The U.S. Drought Monitor moved the county from a severe to moderate designation in its update Thursday. The county had been in the severe tier since early December.
While the region is still enduring a drought, the impacts are less severe with the boost of snow and rain.
“This heavy precipitation resulted in a large area of 1-category improvements from central Virginia southward across the interior Carolinas and most of the extant dry areas in Georgia,” U.S. Drought Monitor officials wrote in a summary.
Last week, Halifax County lifted a ban on burning established in early December when dry conditions made it extremely dangerous.
The recent snow also moved most of Virginia down to the abnormally dry category, according to the drought monitor. Only areas along Virginia’s Southside, Tidewater and northern mountain areas are still considered in a moderate drought.
Rain was expected to bring more drought relief Sunday. Otherwise, this week is expected to be dry — and cold — until another system arrives near the weekend.
“It won’t be until the weekend that we see our next disturbance enter the area,” forecasters with the National Weather Service in Blacksburg wrote in a Sunday morning discussion.
Confidence is still low in the forecast on what that may be. Some models tease a potential for another round of wintry weather.
One in particular is showing a developing low over the southern central United States and brings it into an area with cold air already in place.
“That said, we will have to keep watching this system and update as we go,” forecasters wrote.