October 2016 was cold

Photo of the bark of a Eucalyptus tree

White Box at Sunset

In this month, each of five sunny spells of normal temperature was followed by a cold, cloudy, humid break, generally with rain. Only a few days were warmer than normal, including the 27th. That was the first 30° day of the season, five weeks late.
The average weekly temperature was persistently three or four degrees cooler than normal. One cold week about the 15th was more than five degrees below normal, and the warmest week, about the 29th, was still half a degree low.
Most nights were very cool. I recorded no frosts, but others may have done. My most recent frost was early in September.
There were six rain days, not counting two readings of 0.2 mm. The highest reading was 20.0 mm on the 23rd.

Weather log for October 2016

Comparing October months

This was the coldest October on this record from 1999. That includes not only the maximum, mean, and minimum air temperatures read in the Gill Screen, but also the subsoil temperature at 750 mm. Noting that October 2015 had the highest October temperatures, the sudden collapse is astonishing. Last October was three degrees warmer than normal; this month was almost three degrees colder than normal. Put another way, the seasonal warming is a month late this year and was a month early last year.
Unlike September, there was not an unusual amount of moisture in October. Humidity, cloudiness and daily temperature range were near normal.
The monthly rainfall total of 72.1 mm was above the average of 58 mm, in the 70th percentile.
I have discussed the current drought status (that is, drought-free) in another post.

Climate for October 2016


Data. Rainfall figures are usually from the automatic rain gauge at Manilla, published on the internet by the Bureau of Meteorology as Station 55031. However, the gauge ceased recording on the 8th of October, and later readings are from my non-standard gauge. All other data, including subsoil at 750 mm, are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla.

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September 2016 had near-record rain

Blooms of Acacia paradoxa

Kangaroo Thorn

There were fourteen rainy days in a month that ended no warmer than it began. The month of September normally warms up by nearly four degrees. This time it remained near 14° all month. Some plants encouraged by the plentiful moisture were discouraged by the cold.
The highest daily rainfall reading, 28.8 mm on the 14th, hardly compares with one of 71.1 mm in 2005, or even one of 40.0 mm in 2011.
No days were warm. For the first time in this 18-year record, no September day reached 25°. More days than ever (18) were below 20° but not one was as low as 15°. Temperatures at night were near normal. A frost on the 5th was the only one. It may have been the last of the year, about a fortnight earlier than usual.
Only four mornings this month had no cloud, while seven were totally overcast.

Weather log for September 2016

Comparing September months

For monthly average temperatures, the daily maximum of 19.7° stands out as a record low, 4.1° below normal. Three indicators for moisture reached their extreme September values for the new century: rainfall, percentage of cloudy mornings (63%), and (narrowest) daily temperature range (12.0°). Dew point (6.0°) was just above normal, but very much higher than in September months since 2010.
The monthly rainfall total of 122.4 mm (amended) was one of the four highest ever September readings. The others were: 1917: 124 mm; 1949: 126 mm; 1998: 166 mm.
There are not now any noteworthy shortages in rainfall totals for any number of months, up to 360 months (thirty years).

Climate for September 2016


Data. Rainfall figures for this month are from the automatic rain gauge at Manilla, published on the internet by the Bureau of Meteorology as Station 55031. All other data, including subsoil at 750 mm, are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla.

Wet August 2016 had two cold days

Photo of knife-leaf wattle blooms

Knife-leaf Wattle

Six days with at least eight millimetres of rain made for a very wet August.
On the average, the temperature was normal until the fourth week, which was cool. However, there were two remarkably cold days. The 3rd, at 10.6°, was the second coldest August day and the 22nd, at 11.6°, the fifth coldest. Most nights were cool, around 1°, but several were much warmer, generally with the rain. Most days were sunny, and eighteen of the mornings were frosty, about three more than usual.

Weather log for August 2016

Comparing August months

On average, the days were cold: as cold as in August 2001, but not as cold as in 2008 or 2010. The average night-time temperature, however, was normal. The dew point, while not high, was higher than in the previous four August months.
The monthly rainfall total of 80.2 mm was twice the average (40 mm), and in the 89th percentile. No rainfall total for any number of months is now below the 19th percentile. That is the 42-month total of 1949 mm, which is a mere 313 mm lower than the median 42-month value. Both Greenhatch Creek and Rushes Creek have flowed in recent weeks.

Climate for August 2016


Data. Rainfall figures for this month are from the automatic rain gauge at Manilla, published on the internet by the Bureau of Meteorology as Station 55031. All other data, including subsoil at 750 mm, are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla.

September 2015 cold and dry

Photo of native clematis

Native clematis

Few days or nights in September were warmer than normal. The 23rd was a very cold day (17.1°) and the 24th had a very cold morning (-0.1°). The weekly temperature was near normal in the third week, but it had been cool in the first. It was cold (4.7 below normal) in the fourth week, and was rising through normal at the month’s end.
As is usual in September, most days were fine, and they were much warmer than the nights. The afternoon humidity was low (24%), but not nearly as low as in 2013 (15%).
Rain fell on only four days, with the highest reading 8.6 mm on the 4th.

Weather log for September 2015

 Comparing September months

In a dramatic change from August, both days and nights were very cold, as they were in September 2004.
The aridity was not quite as bad as in 2013, when the dew point was lower and there was less cloud.
Such cold, dry conditions are not those of an El Niño event (hot and dry) or of a La Niña event (cold and wet). If more extreme, they would be those of a glacial period.
The rainfall of 15.9 mm was well below average, in the 22nd percentile. There are still no serious shortages in rainfall totals for small numbers of months. A severe shortage (4th percentile) has appeared in the 30 month total (1186 mm). There are still deep ponds in Greenhatch Creek.

Climate for September 2015


Data. All data, including subsoil at 750 mm, are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla. Rainfall data up to 26/3/15 is from Manilla Post Office, Station 055031.

April 2008: fog and black frosts

The daily weather log

Weather log April 2008

Usually, the air cools and dries out quickly during April. This time only the daily maximum temperature came steadily down. The average temperature hovered near 16° until the last days.
At first, the air was very dry, with a Dew Point below 5°. Under a clear sky on the 4th the early morning temperature went down to 2.1° in the screen, which would be 0.1° of frost. Because the Dew Point (-3.8°) was much lower than that, there was no ice on the grass, which made it a “black frost”. It is said that frosts seldom occur in Manilla before ANZAC Day (April 25th).
As the month went on the air got moister. By the 24th the clouds in the overcast sky were down on the hills. On the 26th the town was blanketed in fog as the humidity hit 100%. (Temperature and Dew Point were both 8°.)
Evaporation was increased by strong winds on the 27th and 28th.
Dry southerly air made the last three days cool and sunny. Black frosts came back giving screen temperatures of 0.6° and 0.1° (around 2° of frost).
Practically no rain (3.6 mm) fell in more than seven weeks from 29 February to 21 April. After that, there were four rain days, including 12.8 mm on the 24th. In total, 20.2 mm fell in April, on five rain days.

 Comparing April months

Climate April 2008

The mean temperature this month was nearly as low as the coolest  April in ten years (1999). This was the fifth cool month in a row: December (1.0° down)  January (1.9° down) February (3.1° down) March (0.9° down) and April (2.1° down). As a 5-month average the temperature was 1.8° below normal. It is as if Manilla had been moved 400 km south (near Grenfell) or 150 metres higher (like Barraba). (Note added: This was a time of global low temperature.)

The month was as cloudy as usual, but less humid.
At 20 mm, this April’s total rainfall is about 20 mm below average, as in 2001 and 2004. It is much higher than in April 2005, when Manilla was in a rainfall  drought for several months.
The rainfall total for this March and April (22 mm) is in the 4th percentile of two-monthly totals: a severe shortage. However, the three-month total (138 mm) is just below the median, and the totals for 4, 5, 6, 9 and 12 months are all at the median or above it. In particular, the 6-month total (401 mm) is quite high, at the 75th percentile.


Data. Rainfall data is from Manilla Post Office, courtesy of Phil Pinch. Dew point values before August 2005 are from Tamworth Airport 6 am data supplied by the Bureau of Meteorology. Temperature and other data are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla.

 

Cold, cloudy wet February 2008

The daily weather logWeather log February 2008

Reading the 7-day mean temperatures, the month started near normal, but cooled to unusually low figures by the end of the first week – five degrees down! For a week from the 19th it was only two degrees below normal, then back to four degrees down at the end of the month.
Days were particularly cool, running about 29° instead of 33°.  However, the coolest days were not extreme.
The warmest day, Friday the 22nd, reached only 35.5°. The following morning was the warmest at 26.1°.
Dry air arrived from the south on the 24th, with a Dew Point of only 5.8°.
Rain fell frequently until the 19th, with the 6th being the wettest day (32 mm). The 29th was also very wet. There were nine rain days, totalling 115.6 mm. This is nearly twice the long-term February average of 66 mm.
Very few mornings were “Fine” (with no cloud).

 Comparing February months

Climate February 2008

This was by far the coldest of the last nine Februaries, by day and by night. The mean daily maximum of 28.8°, the mean daily mean of 22.2°, and the mean daily minimum of 15.6° were all well below average, by 3.7°, 3.1°, and 2.5° respectively.
The contrast with the last two years is stark: the days in February 2007 were 4.5° hotter, and those in February 2006, 5.2° hotter than this month. (Note added: This cooling was global.)
With 58% of mornings exceeding 4 octas of cloud, this February, along with December 2007 (58%) and June 2007 (60%) was one of the cloudiest months in nine years. Most months in Manilla have about 30% cloudy mornings.

This month’s rainfall of 116 mm is in the 81st percentile of February totals. (Last February’s 128 mm was the seventeenth wettest February on record.) Taking rainfall totals for more than one month, every total up to 12 months is very high: above the 70th percentile.


Data. Rainfall data is from Manilla Post Office, courtesy of Phil Pinch. Dew point values before August 2005 are from Tamworth Airport 6 am data supplied by the Bureau of Meteorology. Temperature and other data are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla.

 

Very cool January 2008

The daily weather logWeather log January 2008

The month began sunny and dry, but two degrees cooler than usual. Three rainy days beginning on the fifth brought high humidity and one daily maximum temperature as low as 24.4°. This is 9.2° below normal! Eight fine days followed, with normal January temperatures.

With a second rainy spell from the 17th to the 21st, days were again remarkably cool: five days were more than 8° below normal. In the dry fine weather that followed, all temperatures – maximum, minimum, and mean – were even lower than when the month began. They slowly rose to normal by the end of the month.
Humidity was normal for January: the morning Dew Point was 10° to 12° in the dry spells and 18° in wet spells, giving an average of 14.2°.
Rain fell on nine days. The wettest day, the 17th, had 17.2 mm, and the total was 65.8 mm.

 Comparing January monthsClimate January 2008

This January had the coolest days in nine years, and the second coolest mean temperature. This month’s mean daily maximum (31.0°) was 2.9° below the nine-year average (33.9°), and an astonishing 4.4° below last year’s figure (35.4°). Because the mean maximum was low and the mean minimum was not, the mean daily temperature range this month (13.7°) was also low.

Using Dew Point to measure humidity, January and February are Manilla’s most humid months. This month’s mean morning Dew Point of 15.3° is normal.

With 39% of mornings having more than 4 octas of cloud, this was a cloudy month, but not as cloudy as December (58%) or November (50%).
The total monthly rainfall of 65.8 mm is 21 mm short of the long-term January average. However, total rainfalls for the last 2, 3, and 4 months are all above the 80th percentile.


Data. Rainfall data is from Manilla Post Office, courtesy of Phil Pinch. Dew point values before August 2005 are from Tamworth Airport 6 am data supplied by the Bureau of Meteorology. Temperature and other data are from 3 Monash Street, Manilla.