Thursday, 1 December 2011 - Monthly Climate Summary for Northern Territory - Product code IDCKGC22R0
Northern Territory in November 2011: La Niña comes to town
After a pretty average October, La Niña has begun to influence the weather of the Northern Territory, bringing cooler and wetter conditions to most parts.
- Very wet and cool across most of the NT
- In contrast, it was hot and dry in Nhulunbuy area
Rainfall was above to well above average during November, with several stations recording their wettest November on record. November saw the consolidation of La Niña in the Pacific Ocean, as well as warming of the oceans around northern Australia. These influences played a major role in producing excess rainfall. The average rainfall across the NT during November was 87.5 mm, well above the monthly average of 39.5 mm. In fact November 2011 ranks 4th wettest on record, and well ahead of November 2010 which recorded only 58.2 mm when averaged across the Territory.
While the western Top End received regular afternoon showers and storms, the bulk of the rainfall that fell through central and southern parts occurred around the middle of the month, when a series of cloud-band events dumped close to 100 mm across a wide region.
The wettest overall was Geriatric Park with 302.4 mm, followed by Point Stuart with 292.8 mm, and then Humpty Doo Fire Station with 286.0 mm.
The wettest single day was at Daly Waters Creek with 129.5 mm on the 20th, followed by Ngukurr with 117.2 mm on the 21st, and then Daly Waters with 116.2 mm on the 20th.
Overall, including daytime and night-time temperatures, the Northern Territory was well below average for November, particularly through central parts where the mercury was 1 - 3 °C lower on average. Averaged across the NT, November 2011 was 1.4 °C below normal, and ranks 5th coolest on record behind 1974, 2010 and 1999, which were also La Niña years. The average maximum temperature across the NT was 36.2 °C (1.8 °C below the long-term average), while the average minimum temperature was 22.6 °C (1 °C below the long-term average). A significant contributor to the below average temperatures was the prevalence of cloudiness and rainfall, which is typical for La Niña events.
The warmest on average was Ngukurr with 31.4 °C, followed by Centre Island and Kidman Springs with 30.6 °C, and then Jabiru Airport with 30.4 °C.
The coolest on average was Arltunga with 23.8 °C, followed by Kulgera and Yulara with 24.4 °C, and then Curtin Springs with 25.0 °C.
The Northern Territory was much cooler than normal during November, particularly through central parts where maximum temperatures were 2 - 4 °C below normal for the month. The north coast of the Top End and the far southeastern Alice Springs District recorded maximum temperatures closer to average. Overall, the average maximum temperature across the NT was 36.2 °C (1.8 °C below the long-term average). Territory-wide, this ranks as the 5th coolest November on record for maximum temperatures, behind 1974, 1999 and 2010 - all La Niña years.
The hottest day was at Lajamanu with 42.1 °C on the 30th, followed by Alice Springs Airport with 41.9 °C on the 29th, and then Walungurru with 41.5 °C on the 29th.
The warmest days on average were at Ngukurr with 37.4 °C, followed by Kidman Springs with 37.0 °C, and then Lajamanu with 36.9 °C.
The coolest days on average were at Arltunga with 31.7 °C, followed by Kulgera with 32.0 °C, and then Yulara with 32.2 °C.
The coldest day was at Kulgera with 14.7 °C on the 21st, followed by Curtin Springs with 14.9 °C on the 21st, followed by Yulara with 15.3 °C on the 21st.Some sites had their coolest November day on record. McArthur River Mine recorded its lowest November mean daily maximum temperature on record.
Minimum temperatures were generally below average, with parts of the Barkly recording well below average minimum temperatures. Overall, the average minimum temperature was 22.6 °C (1 °C below the long-term average).
The coldest nights were all at Arltunga with 7.3 °C on the 25th, 7.9 °C on the 26th, and 8.3 °C on the 27th.
Not surprisingly, the coolest nights on average were at Arltunga with 15.8 °C, followed by Yulara with 16.6 °C, and then Kulgera with 16.7 °C.
The warmest nights on average were at Cape Don with 26.8 °C, followed by Centre Island with 26.6 °C, and then North East Island with 26.5 °C.
The warmest night was at Dum In Mirrie with 29.1 °C on the 29th, followed by Cape Don with 28.8 °C on the 23rd, and then Warruwi with 28.8 °C on the 28th.
The strongest wind gust was at Walungurru with 94 km/h on the 14th, caused by a dry microburst from isolated shower activity in the area. Bradshaw recorded a 76 km/h wind gust on the 9th, and Tennant Creek Airport recorded a 70 km/h wind gust on the 13th.
|Extremes in November 2011|
42.1 °C at Lajamanu on the 30th
|Warmest days on average||
37.4 °C at Ngukurr
|Coolest days on average||
31.7 °C at Arltunga
14.7 °C at Kulgera on the 21st
7.3 °C at Arltunga on the 25th
|Coolest nights on average||
15.8 °C at Arltunga
|Warmest nights on average||
26.8 °C at Cape Don
|Warmest night|| 29.1 °C at Dum In Mirrie on the 29th
|Warmest on average overall||
31.4 °C at Ngukurr
|Coolest on average overall||
23.8 °C at Arltunga
302.4 mm at Geriatric Park
129.5 mm at Daly Waters Creek on the 20th
|Highest wind gust||
94 km/h at Walungurru on the 14th
|Record highest total November rainfall|
|Total rainfall (mm)||
|Curtin Springs||106.2||93.6||in 2008||56||22.5|
|Daly Waters||246.0||136.6||in 2008||41||42.7|
|McArthur River Mine||262.6||182.0||in 1999||38||49.8|
|Hidden Valley||160.8||127.2||in 1973||29||40.3|
|Record lowest November daily maximum temperature|
Lowest daily maximum
|Curtin Springs||14.9||on the 21st||16.1||on the 4th in 1975||45||34.4|
|Daly Waters||25.9||on the 3rd||26.1||on the 2nd in 1955||40||38.2|
|Kulgera||14.7||on the 21st||16.9||on the 15th in 1983||30||33.4|
|Yulara||15.3||on the 21st||16.6||on the 14th in 1994||23||35.0|
|Watarrka||15.9||on the 21st||17.0||on the 4th in 2007||20||35.1|
|Record lowest November mean daily maximum temperature|
Mean daily maximum
|McArthur River Mine||35.8||37.1||in 1970||31||38.7|
|Summary statistics for November 2011|
|Maximum temperatures (°C)||Minimum temperatures (°C)||Rainfall (millimetres)|
|Darwin-Daly (district 14GA)|
|Central Arnhem Plateau||33.3||36.7||28th||22.9||20.1||17th||201.6|
|Delamere Weapons Range||35.3||-2.4||38.5||30th||23.7||-1.2||21.0||3rd||104.6||65.2||high||160%|
|Point Stuart||33.8||35.8||1st||24.5||21.4||8th||292.8||65.5||v high||447%|
|Arnhem (district 14BC)|
|Groote Eylandt Airport||33.7||-0.8||36.0||29th||23.6||+0.1||21.5||2nd||245.2||107.5||v high||228%|
|North East Island||33.3||34.7||15th||26.5||23.9||22nd||40.4||43.4||high||93%|
|Roper-Mcarthur (district 14DE)|
|McArthur River Mine||35.8||-2.9||39.0||30th||24.1||0.0||21.1||22nd||262.6||49.8||highest||527%|
|Victoria (district 14F)|
|Timber Creek||36.4||-2.1||40.1||29th||24.0||-1.3||21.2||28th||189.7||80.3||v high||236%|
|Victoria River Downs||36.4||-2.1||41.0||29th||23.9||-0.7||20.1||28th||127.2||58.8||v high||216%|
|Barkly (district 15A)|
|Brunette Downs||34.7||-3.3||38.2||16th||22.4||-0.6||16.6||28th||109.2||28.8||v high||379%|
|Tennant Creek Airport||34.0||-2.5||39.5||7th||22.7||-1.1||17.5||23rd||107.6||37.4||v high||288%|
|Alice Springs (district 15B)|
|Alice Springs Airport||32.8||-0.8||41.9||29th||17.6||-0.3||10.3||25th||40.6||28.2||high||144%|
|Territory Grape Farm||34.3||-1.3||40.7||29th||19.7||+1.1||14.3||25th||18.0||32.9||average||55%|
A Monthly Climate Summary is prepared to list the main features of the weather in Northern Territory using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. Later information, including data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review, usually published in the fourth week of the month.
This statement has been prepared based on information available at 9 am on Thursday 1 December 2011. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.
Averages are long-term means based on observations from
the years 1800 to 2009.
They are not shown for sites with less than 10 years of record in that time, as they cannot then be calculated reliably.
The median is sometimes more representative than the mean of long-term average rain.
The Rank indicates how rainfall this time compares with the climate record for the site,
based on the
(very low rainfall is in decile 1, low in decile 2 or 3,
average in decile 4 to 7, high in decile 8 or 9
and very high is in decile 10).
The Fraction of average shows how much rain has fallen this time as a percentage of the long-term mean.