The lack of rain over the past six weeks has caused parts of this area to now be classified as being in low-end drought conditions. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, the area around Jamestown is now considered to be in moderate drought (Drought 1 status) whereas the immediate area around Fargo Moorhead is rated as Abnormally Dry (Drought 0 status).
The Drought Monitor uses a scale from D0 to D4 to classify drought with D4 considered to be exceptional drought. Many parts of the region were either in D4 or D3 (extreme drought) status during the summer and autumn of 2012. Because of our current dry stretch is currently considered a short-term problem, a good rain would quickly move this area from drought to normal conditions quickly, but for now, it is dry and forecasting if this stretch is the beginning of another extended dry period or an aberration is difficult, but my suspicion is that most areas will stay fairly dry through the first frost of autumn.