Unseasonable snow in Australia

  • Local temperatures in Celsius in New South Wales at 8pm on Friday.

    Local temperatures in Celsius in New South Wales at 8am on Saturday.

    Local temperatures in Celsius in New South Wales at 8pm on Saturday.

    A kangaroo enjoying the snowy conditions. Photo: Anna Gowthorpe (PA Archive)

    Kangaroo in the unusual snowy conditions. Photo: Anna Gowthorpe (PA Archive)

  • Unseasonable snow in Australia
    13.10.2012 13:26


    It is more than a month into spring in New South Wales, Australia, with temperatures normally ranging between 13 and 22 Celsius. However, a low pressure system has brought cold temperatures to the region along with some unseasonable snow. 

    On Thursday and Friday a deep low pressure system moved east across south-east Australia with a cold front associated with it. The cold front was slow moving and remained over parts of the Blue Mountains into Saturday. Strong winds and heavy precipitation resulted, this falling as rain, sleet, hail and snow due to the unseasonably low temperatures. 

    Over the past 3 days daytime temperatures have been as low as 5C over high ground and struggled to reach above 10C in areas further inland (see images). Canberra has been very cold with the maximum temperature only reaching 8C on Thursday; this is 11C below the October average and the lowest such figure since 1967. Sydney has been a little milder as it is near to the coast with temperatures reaching into the mid-teens, but snow has still fallen. It is forecasted that temperatures may even fall as low as -0.5C at Mount Nullo in the Central Tablelands tonight. 

    The snow has caused chaos across many parts of New South Wales. In Sydney over 300 motorists were rescued as traffic became grid lock and almost 2,500 homes lost power. In the Northern Tablelands at Guyra, 17cm of snow was recorded which some locals are suggesting is the heaviest fall they’ve had in 10 years. A number of roads have been shut, particularly those that travel into the Blue Mountains. In addition to this a group of teenagers had to be rescued after there hike turned too chilly and they had to set of an emergency beacon. However, the kangaroos and children seem to be enjoying it!

    Luckily for New South Wales, warmer weather is on the way as high pressure will be moving in from the west next week, but it may take a couple of days for the snow to melt and there is the risk in the mean time of some black ice forming. 

    By: Sally Webb