Greater Sydney in winter 2022: A dry June followed by a wettest on record July

Winter rainfall for Greater Sydney was around 1.5 to 2.5 times the average, with the wettest on record July since records began in 1900. Mean maximum temperatures were close to average while mean minimum temperatures were up to around 1 °C warmer than average.

Wet winter due to a record wet July

  • Winter rainfall for Greater Sydney was around 1.5 to 2.5 times the average.
  • This was despite much of Greater Sydney recording less than 20% of its average rainfall during June, as well as August being drier than average.
  • A record wet July where many sites recorded at least five to eight times their monthly averages, resulted in an overall significantly wetter than average winter.
  • For many sites, more than half of their winter total rainfall was recorded during the first week of July, from the influence of an East Coast Low.
  • An East Coast Low developed off the Hunter Coast on the 2nd July, and although moving offshore on the 3rd July, onshore flow continued to bring persistent rain to Greater Sydney.
  • The rainfall intensified on the 4th July, when a trough extending from the East Coast Low passed over Greater Sydney.
  • During that week, some sites had their highest winter daily rainfall on record.
  • A number of sites had their highest total winter rainfall on record or their highest total winter rainfall for at least 20 years.

Warmer than average nights for the majority of winter

  • Although mean monthly minimum temperatures were 1.5 to 2.5 °C cooler than average during June, a warmer than average July and August resulted in mean minimum temperatures being up to around 1°C above the winter average for most of Greater Sydney.
  • Mean maximum temperatures were close to average for most sites, being within 0.5 °C of their winter average.
  • Camden Airport AWS had its lowest winter mean daily maximum temperature for at least 20 years.

Sydney (Observatory Hill)

  • Total rainfall for Sydney (Observatory Hill) was 480.0 mm, which is 155% of the average over all years at the former site of 309.6 mm, or 161% of the 1991–2020 average of 297.4 mm.
  • The monthly total of 404.0 mm is a July record for Observatory Hill, exceeding the previous July record of 336.1 mm at the former site in 1950.
  • The year-to-date rainfall total at Sydney Observatory Hill is 2010.6 mm, which despite a drier than average August, is the highest on record year-to-date total across both the current and the former site (from which full year records began in 1859).
  • 2022 is already the fourth-wettest year on record at Observatory Hill (across both the current and former site), with year-to-date rainfall being 166% of the annual average over all years at the former site of 1213.4 mm.
  • The mean daily maximum temperature for Sydney (Observatory Hill) was 18.4 °C which is 1.3 °C above the average over all years at the former site of 17.1 °C, or 0.1 °C below the 1991–2020 average of 18.5 °C.
  • The warmest day was 24.7 °C on 3 August, and the coolest day was on 1 July when the temperature reached 12.0 °C.
  • The mean daily minimum temperature for Sydney (Observatory Hill) was 9.5 °C which is 0.7 °C above the average over all years at the former site of 8.8 °C, or the same as the 1991–2020 average.
  • The coldest morning was 5.0 °C on 16 July, and the warmest morning was on 5 August when the minimum temperature was 16.0 °C.

Major flooding in the Hawkesbury-Nepean catchment

  • The intense rainfall during the first week of July, in addition to wet antecedent soil conditions, resulted in major flooding for the Hawkesbury-Nepean catchment.
  • The river height at Menangle Bridge on the Nepean River peaked at 16.59 m on the 3rd, slightly lower than the level observed during the flooding in April 2022, but higher than the level observed in March 2022.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057

Extremes in winter 2022
Hottest day 25.4 °C at Badgerys Creek AWS on 30 Aug
25.4 °C at Penrith Lakes AWS on 30 Aug
Warmest days on average 19.1 °C at Penrith Lakes AWS
Coolest days on average 9.5 °C at Mount Boyce AWS
Coldest day 4.1 °C at Mount Boyce AWS on 1 Jun
Coldest night -2.1 °C at Camden Airport AWS on 15 Jun
-2.1 °C at Mount Boyce AWS on 24 Aug
Coolest nights on average 3.0 °C at Mount Boyce AWS
Warmest nights on average 11.3 °C at Sydney Harbour (Wedding Cake West)
Warmest night 17.2 °C at Sydney Harbour (Wedding Cake West) on 5 Aug
Warmest on average overall 14.3 °C at Norah Head AWS
14.3 °C at Sydney Harbour (Wedding Cake West)
Coolest on average overall 6.3 °C at Mount Boyce AWS
Wettest overall 921.0 mm at Darkes Forest (Kintyre)
Wettest day 298.0 mm at Darkes Forest (Kintyre) on 3 Jul
Strongest wind gust 104 km/h at Mount Boyce AWS on 17 Jul

Record highest winter daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Darkes Forest (Kintyre) 298.0 on 3 Jul 270.6 on 18 Aug 1998 126
Ourimbah (Dog Trap Road) 268.2 on 5 Jul 263.0 on 9 Jun 2007 70
Lucas Heights (ANSTO) 247.2 on 3 Jul 232.6 on 11 Jun 1991 65
St Albans (Espie St) 142.0 on 5 Jul 109.2 on 21 Jun 1975 56
Camden Airport AWS 156.4 on 3 Jul 142.6 on 6 Aug 1986 49
Campbelltown (Kentlyn (Georges River Roa 193.0 on 3 Jul 154.0 on 5 Jun 2016 45
Bilpin Post Office 207.0 on 4 Jul 185.4 on 2 Aug 1990 35
Richmond RAAF 88.8 on 5 Jul 82.0 on 9 Jun 2007 29
Badgerys Creek AWS 121.8 on 3 Jul 109.2 on 6 Jun 2016 27
Penrith Lakes AWS 101.6 on 3 Jul 81.6 on 5 Jun 2016 27
Blackheath (Wombat Street) 129.0 on 3 Jul 96.0 on 5 Jun 2016 25
Horsley Park Equestrian Centre AWS 178.4 on 5 Jul 130.2 on 6 Jun 2016 25
Oyster Bay (Green Point Road) 178.0 on 3 Jul 116.0 on 16 Aug 1998 25
Abbotsbury (Fairfield (City Farm)) 151.0 on 5 Jul 136.0 on 6 Jun 2016 22
Menangle Bridge (Nepean River) 166.0 on 3 Jul 137.0 on 5 Jun 2016 22
Putty (The Gibba) 90.0 on 5 Jul 89.0 on 30 Jun 2005 22
Faulconbridge (Great Western Hwy) 172.0 on 3 Jul 96.0 on 9 Jun 2007 21



Record highest winter total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Lucas Heights (ANSTO) 684.3 509.9 in 1991 65 233.6
Campbelltown (Kentlyn (Georges River Roa 501.0 479.0 in 2016 43 161.8
Bilpin Post Office 557.6 497.0 in 2007 33 188.9
Wyong (Olney Forest) 687.0 622.0 in 2007 22 220.5
Blackheath (Wombat Street) 493.0 440.0 in 2016 21 199.1
Faulconbridge (Great Western Hwy) 419.0 397.0 in 2007 21 152.0
Putty (The Gibba) 331.0 323.0 in 2007 21 116.4

Highest winter total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
higher
Average for
winter
Katoomba (Farnells Rd) 664.7 911.3 in 1952* 281.0
Faulconbridge (St Georges Crescent) 400.4 488.0 in 1987* 203.9
Darkes Forest (Kintyre) 921.0 986.6 in 1998* 334.4
Kurrajong Heights (Bells Line of Road) 346.6 395.0 in 1998* 196.6

* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a higher value has gone unreported




Lowest winter mean daily maximum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Average for
winter
Camden Airport AWS 17.5 16.9 in 1998 18.1



Summary statistics for winter 2022
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
winter
2022
Diff
from
average
Highest for
winter
2022
Mean for
winter
2022
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
winter
2022
Total for
winter
2022
Average
for
winter
Rank of
winter
2022
Fraction of
winter
average
Badgerys Creek AWS 18.0 -0.2 25.4 30 Aug 5.5 +0.7 -1.3 16 Jul 317.0 127.0 high 250%
Bankstown Airport AWS 18.2 +0.1 24.0 3 Aug 6.8 +0.8 1.2 15 Jun 364.0 176.8 high 206%
Camden Airport AWS 17.5 -0.6 24.8 30 Aug 5.0 +1.2 -2.1 15 Jun 315.6 148.8 v high 212%
Campbelltown (Mount Annan) 17.8 -0.5 25.3 30 Aug 5.3 +0.6 -0.1 15 Jun 327.0 167.7 high 195%
Canterbury Racecourse AWS 18.0 -0.2 24.1 3 Aug 6.8 +0.4 0.8 9 Jun 400.2 233.6 high 171%
Cooranbong (Lake Macquarie AWS) 18.5 -0.5 23.7 30 Aug 6.4 +0.8 0.2 15 Jun 451.6 224.1 v high 202%
Gosford AWS 17.9   23.0 30 Aug 8.2   2.0 16 Jul 493.0
Holsworthy Aerodrome AWS 17.4   24.0 30 Aug 6.5   0.0 16 Jul 485.4 216.7 v high 224%
Holsworthy Defence AWS 16.9   23.9 30 Aug 6.7   1.0 16 Jul 624.6
Horsley Park Equestrian Centre AWS 17.5 -0.5 23.9 30 Aug 6.8 +0.3 0.2 9 Jun 416.2 159.6 v high 261%
Katoomba (Farnells Rd) 10.9 +0.6 16.8 3 Aug 3.3 +0.1 -2.0 24 Aug 664.7 281.0 v high 237%
Mangrove Mountain AWS 16.7 +0.3 22.0 23 Aug 6.1 -0.4 1.0 14 Jun 599.6 230.8 v high 260%
Mount Boyce AWS 9.5 -0.8 16.0 3 Aug 3.0 -0.1 -2.1 24 Aug 441.2 185.4 v high 238%
Norah Head AWS 18.1 -0.1 23.9 30 Aug 10.5 0.0 6.6 9 Jun 348.6 310.5 average 112%
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) 18.2 +0.1 24.0 3 Aug 7.1 +0.1 2.1 16 Jul 374.0 196.3 high 191%
Penrith Lakes AWS 19.1 +0.4 25.4 30 Aug 6.3 +0.2 0.2 9 Jun 281.4 113.6 high 248%
Richmond RAAF 18.5 0.0 24.3 30 Aug 5.4 +1.0 -1.0 9 Jun 234.6 119.7 high 196%
Sydney (Observatory Hill) 18.4   24.7 3 Aug 9.5   5.0 16 Jul 480.0
Sydney Airport AMO 18.1 +0.3 25.1 30 Aug 9.5 +1.4 4.9 16 Jul 410.2 270.6 high 152%
Sydney Harbour (Wedding Cake West) 17.4 -0.3 22.8 3 Aug 11.3 +0.2 7.4 30 Jul
Sydney Olympic Park AWS (Archery Centre) 18.5 -0.4 24.2 3 Aug 7.4 +0.3 2.6 16 Jul 380.6 248.4 high 153%
Terrey Hills AWS 16.6 -0.3 22.2 3 Aug 8.3 0.0 3.3 9 Jun 421.4 258.2 high 163%

Notes

The Seasonal climate summary, generally published on the first working day of each month, lists the main features of the weather in Greater Sydney using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. More extensive discussion of significant weather events, along with later information and data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review.

This summary includes data from observing sites in or near the Greater Sydney “Greater Capital City Statistical Area” (GCCSA). The Australian Bureau of Statistics designed the GCCSAs to “include the population within the urban area of the city, as well as people who regularly socialise, shop or work within the city, and live in small towns and rural areas surrounding the city. It is important to note that GCCSAs do not define the built up edge of the city. They provide a stable definition for these cities and are designed for the output of a range of social and economic survey data.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 12 pm on Friday 2 September 2022. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

In some situations, some or all of the rainfall is in the form of hail or snow. In these cases the totals given are for the water equivalent: the depth of liquid water that results from melting any frozen precipitation. There can be significant 'undercatch' of snow in strong winds, meaning the true precipitation can be higher than that reported.

Averages for individual sites 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 10 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.

Where temperature area averages are mentioned, they are derived from the ACORN-SAT dataset.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057

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