Western South Dakota is sliding into a drought. The U.S. Drought Monitor shows several counties are experiencing moderate to severe drought. Officials say the drought is hitting Lawrence, Pennington and Meade counties the hardest.
Melissa Smith is a hydrologist with the Rapid City National Weather Service. She says areas around the Black Hills are in real need of precipitation.
“Right now there isn’t looking like there’s enough of a soaking rain that’s going to be coming to really give us much relieve. I think the biggest thing is that field conditions are suggesting that crops and pastures are starting to deteriorate rapidly in western South Dakota and that if we don’t get some rain soon we might be slipping into extreme drought conditions over western South Dakota,” says Smith.
Smith says there are still chances of scattered rain and thunderstorms in the future. She says moderate precipitation is not enough to break the drought.