Canberra in spring 2011: Warm spring days for the ACT

  • Close to average rainfall
  • Above average maximum temperatures, 9th warmest on record
  • Average minimum temperatures

Rainfall

Canberra Airport recorded 174.6 mm of rain during spring, close to the historical average of 178.8 mm. The majority of the rain during the season fell in November, including 45 mm associated with a low pressure trough on November 26th, with totals reaching 91.6 mm at Tuggeranong and the wettest spring day on record at Tharwa. Thunderstorm activity caused further moderate falls on November 30th, reaching 60.4 mm at Mt Ginini and 45.8 mm at Tuggeranong. In comparison, both September and October had well below average rainfall at Canberra Airport, the driest since 2007 and 2006 respectively.

Some sites had their highest spring daily rainfall on record.

Temperature

The average maximum temperature at Canberra Airport during spring was 21.4 °C, 2 °C above the historical average. This was the 9th warmest spring on record for Canberra, but the coolest since 2005, following several very warm springs in recent years. Temperatures were particularly warm during September, which was the 4th warmest on record for Canberra, including the second highest number of days above 24 °C on record. This was followed by further warm conditions during both October and November, with six days above 30 °C during the season, above the historical average of 3 days.

Canberra Airport recorded an average minimum temperature during spring of 6.0 °C, average for spring. Nights were particularly cool during September, which was the coolest since 1994, with further cool nights associated with clear conditions in October. Temperatures were warmer towards the end of spring, with well above average nights associated with the heavy rainfall during November.

Wind

Winds were predominantly northwesterly during spring, with 60% of 3pm winds at Canberra Airport between NNW and WNW, slightly above average for spring. The maximum wind gust recorded at the airport was 83 km/hr on September 29, with the highest wind gust anywhere in the ACT reaching 107 km/hr at Mt Ginini on September 20.

Further information

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Extremes in spring 2011
Hottest day 32.7 °C at Canberra Airport on 19 Nov
Warmest days on average 21.3 °C at Canberra Airport
Coolest days on average 11.6 °C at Mount Ginini AWS
Coldest day 0.1 °C at Mount Ginini AWS on 30 Sep
Coldest night -6.6 °C at Mount Ginini AWS on 10 Sep
Coolest nights on average 3.0 °C at Mount Ginini AWS
Warmest nights on average 6.7 °C at Tuggeranong (Isabella Plains) AWS
Warmest night 19.5 °C at Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve on 8 Nov
Warmest on average overall 13.9 °C at Tuggeranong (Isabella Plains) AWS
Coolest on average overall 7.3 °C at Mount Ginini AWS
Wettest overall 392.2 mm at Mount Ginini AWS
Wettest day 91.6 mm at Tuggeranong (Isabella Plains) AWS on 26 Nov
Highest wind gust 107 km/h at Mount Ginini AWS on 20 Sep

Record highest spring daily rainfall
Highest daily rainfall
in spring 2011 (mm)
Previous wettest
for spring
Years of
record
Tharwa General Store 86.6 on 26 Nov 78.6 on 19 Oct 2000 72



Summary statistics for spring 2011
Maximum temperatures
for spring
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
for spring
(°C)
Rainfall
for spring
(millimetres)
Mean for
spring
2011
Diff
from
average
Highest for
spring
2011
Mean for
spring
2011
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
spring
2011
Total for
spring
2011
Average
for
spring
Rank of
spring
2011
Fraction of
spring
average
Canberra Airport 21.4 +2.0 32.7 19 Nov 6.0 0.0 -5.2 10 Sep 174.6 178.8 average 98%
Mount Ginini AWS 11.6   21.6 19 Nov 3.0   -6.6 10 Sep 392.2
Tuggeranong (Isabella Plains) AWS 21.0   32.1 19 Nov 6.7   -4.0 10 Sep 271.6

Notes

As of March 2010, the official station for Canberra is 70351 'Canberra Airport'. Averages from the previous site, 70014 Canberra Airport Comparison, are used for comparisons (all years of record).

A Seasonal Climate Summary is prepared to list the main features of the weather in ACT Monthly Summary 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 11 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 all available years of record, which vary widely from site to site. They are not shown for sites with less than 20 years of record, 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 decile ranking (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.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries