Thursday, 1 October 2009 - Seasonal Climate Summary for Northern Territory - Product code IDCKGC12R0
The 2009 dry season has been generally warmer than usual, most notably in the south. August was the warmest month, and the warmest August on record, with much warmer than normal heat experienced across southern parts of the Northern Territory. Warmer than usual conditions in June, July and September, combined with the extreme heat experienced in August, made for a very warm dry season.
Darwin experienced just below average rainfall this dry season, with a total of 34.8mm. High humidity levels brought an early end to the dry however, with afternoon showers and the odd storm developing in the Darwin area in early September. Maximum temperatures were warmer than normal, with a mean of 32.2°C being 0.8°C above the long-term mean of 31.4°C. Minimum temperatures were close to the long-term mean with the mean of 21.2°C being only 0.2 °C above the long-term mean of 21.0°C.
It was hotter than normal in Alice Springs this dry, with the mean maximum temperature of 24.2°C being 1.7°C above the long-term mean of 22.5°C. The nights were warmer too, with the Alice mean minimum temperature of 8.7°C being 2.0°C above the long-term mean of 6.7°C. Alice Springs had a total rainfall of 41.2mm which is 24.0mm below average rainfall this dry season.
An archive of previous seasonal summaries for Northern Territory is also available, as are summaries for other states and many other climate summaries and diagnostics.
It was much wetter than normal in the northeast corner of the Arnhem District, with some stations recording more than double their normal dry season rainfall. Most of this rainfall was recorded at the start of the dry in May. Rainfall values were lower than usual for the season in parts of the Alice Springs, Barkly and Victoria River Districts, mainly in the east, and in areas of the western Darwin-Daly District. Rainfall was close to the norm elsewhere across the state, with little rainfall recorded.
The wettest overall was 610.0 mm at Cape Wessel, followed by 343.4 mm at Gove Airport, and then by 144.2 mm at Alyangula Police.
Some sites had their highest total May to September rainfall on record.
Some sites had a completely dry dry season.
The wettest single day was 153.0 mm at Cape Wessel on 5 May, followed by 98.0 mm at Cape Wessel on 2 May, and then by 97.0 mm at Cape Wilberforce on 2 May.
Some sites had their highest May to September daily rainfall on record.
Maximum temperatures were much warmer than normal this dry across the Territory. Stations in the northwest were close to one degree above their long-term mean, with stations elsewhere between one and two degrees above their long-term dry season mean.
The hottest days were all on 23 Sep with 41.5 °C at Bradshaw AWS, followed by 41.1 °C at Port Keats Aero, and by 40.6 °C at Mango Farm.
The warmest days on average were 34.8 °C at Noonamah AWS, followed by 34.5 °C at Jabiru Airport AWS, followed by 34.3 °C at Bradshaw AWS.
The coolest days on average were 23.8 °C at Arltunga, followed by 24.0 °C at Yulara Aero AWS, followed by 24.2 °C at Alice Springs Airport.
The coldest day was on 30 May with 9.0 °C at Kulgera, followed by 9.6 °C at Alice Springs Airport on 30 May, followed by 10.1 °C at Arltunga on 30 May and at Kulgera on 1 Jun.
Some sites had their highest May to September temperature on record.
Some sites had their coldest May to September day (lowest maximum temperature) on record.
Some sites had their highest May to September mean daily maximum temperature on record.
Minimum temperatures were generally above average over the Territory this season, and much warmer in the south. Anomalies were between one and two degrees warmer in the western Barkly and Victoria River districts, and two to three degrees warmer in the Alice Springs District.
The coldest nights were all at Arltunga with -1.7 °C on 5 Aug, followed by -1.5 °C on 16 Jul and on 6 Aug, then followed by -1.3 °C on 4 Aug.
The coolest nights on average were 7.9 °C at Yulara Aero AWS, followed by 8.0 °C at Arltunga, and then by 8.1 °C at Curtin Springs.
The warmest nights on average were 23.8 °C at Cape Don AWS.
The warmest nights were at Kidman Springs with 28.5 °C on 22 Sep, followed by 28.0 °C on 6 Sep and 26 Sep.
Some sites had their warmest May to September night (highest daily minimum temperature) on record.
Some sites had their highest May to September mean daily minimum temperature on record.
The strongest wind gust was 117 km/h at Yulara Aero AWS on 16 Sep, followed by 81 km/h at Alice Springs Airport on 16 Sep, followed by 80 km/h at Yulara Aero AWS on 2 Sep.
Severe thunderstorms were observed on radar in the Alice Springs District from the 16th to the 19th ahead of a trough over WA. On the 16th, these storms were observed near Yulara and Curtin Springs, with a 117km/h wind gust recorded at Yulara AWS and a dust storm reported. Wind gusts were estimated to 111km/h at Curtin Springs, with large trees uprooted, and a very thick dust storm reported. Several other severe thunderstorms were observed on radar, in the northeast Alice Springs District on the 17th, and in the southern Alice Springs District on the 18th and 19th. A 117km/h was recorded at Oodnadatta (in South Australia) on the 19th.
On the 21st a dust storm was reported at Kulgera ahead of a strong cold front moving in from the west. This cold front brought fresh to strong and gusty westerlies over the Alice Springs District on the 22nd with more areas of raised dust. This front continued east through NSW and Queensland, with dust reducing visibility across NSW and southern QLD on the 23rd. This dust eventually reached the north Island of New Zealand on the 24th, after the front carried this dust across the Tasman Sea.
41.5 °C at Bradshaw AWS on 23 Sep
|Warmest days on average|
Highest mean daily maximum temperature
34.8 °C at Noonamah AWS
|Coolest days on average|
Lowest mean daily maximum temperature
23.8 °C at Arltunga
Lowest daily maximum temperature
9.0 °C at Kulgera on 30 May
-1.7 °C at Arltunga on 5 Aug
|Coolest nights on average
Lowest mean daily minimum temperature
7.9 °C at Yulara Aero AWS
|Warmest nights on average
Highest mean daily minimum temperature
|23.8 °C at Cape Don AWS|
Highest daily minimum temperature
28.5 °C at Kidman Springs on 22 Sep
Highest total rainfall
610.0 mm at Cape Wessel|
Highest daily rainfall
153.0 mm at Cape Wessel on 5 May
|Highest wind gust
117 km/h at Yulara Aero AWS on 16 Sep
|Record highest May to September daily rainfall|
|Highest daily rainfall (mm)||
|Elizabeth Valley||62.2||on 8 Sep||58.6||on 17 May 1995||20|
|Record highest total May to September rainfall|
|Total rainfall (mm)||
|Alyangula Police||144.2||133.8||in 1990||29||48.8|
|Sites with a completely dry dry season|
|Total rainfall (mm)||
Previous year with a dry dry season
|Victoria River Downs||0.0||in 1987||116|
|Brunette Downs||0.0||in 2002||112|
|Bradshaw AWS||0.0||in 2001||60|
|Kidman Springs||0.0||in 2000||35|
|Timber Creek||0.0||in 1996||27|
|Record highest May to September temperature|
|Highest temperature (°C)||
|Mango Farm||40.6||on 23 Sep||40.5||on 27 Sep 1997||26|
|Black Point||34.7||on 25 Sep||34.4||on 25 Sep 2008||15|
|Lajamanu AWS||40.3||on 21 Sep||40.0||on 30 Sep 2005||13|
|Record lowest May to September daily maximum temperature|
Lowest daily maximum
|Kulgera||9.0||on 30 May||= 9.0||on 23 Jul 1998||27|
|Record highest May to September mean daily maximum temperature|
|Mean daily maximum (°C)||
|Victoria River Downs||33.1||33.0||in 1998||36|
|Tennant Creek Airport||28.7||= 28.7||in 1996||39|
|Yuendumu AWS||26.9||= 26.6||in 2003||34|
|Timber Creek||33.9||= 33.9||in 1998||28|
|Rabbit Flat||30.3||30.1||in 1999||12|
|Record highest May to September daily minimum temperature|
Highest daily minimum
|Previous highest||Years of
|Darwin Airport||27.2||on 22 Sep||26.7||on 27 Sep 1998||67|
|Alice Springs Airport||27.4||on 21 Sep||26.0||on 24 Sep 1971||67|
|Curtin Springs||22.4||on 21 Sep||= 22.4||on 28 Sep 2006||43|
|Mango Farm||25.6||on 24 Sep||24.9||on 7 May 2004||26|
|Lajamanu AWS||27.5||on 21 Sep||27.2||on 24 Sep 1971||13|
|Kidman Springs||28.5||on 22 Sep||28.2||on 20 Sep 2008||12|
|Point Fawcett AWS||27.7||on 23 Sep||26.9||on 23 Sep 2003||10|
|Dum In Mirrie AWS||27.9||on 23 Sep||27.0||on 25 Sep 2003||10|
|Record highest May to September mean daily minimum temperature|
Mean daily minimum
This table is very wide and may not fit if printed.
|Summary statistics for May to September 2009|
|Darwin-Daly (district 14GA)|
|Batchelor Aero AWS||33.8||+0.8||38.0||23 Sep||18.5||+0.8||7.4||20 Jun||42.6||high||181%|
|Black Point||30.9||+0.5||34.7||25 Sep||22.1||+0.1||15.5||20 Jun||47.5||high||100%|
|Bradshaw AWS||34.3||41.5||23 Sep||18.1||8.0||12 Jun||0|
|Cape Don AWS||30.4||33.4||28 Sep||23.8||20.0||17 Jul||16.4||average||42%|
|Central Arnhem Plateau AWS||31.2||36.2||7 Sep||17.2||8.9||19 Jun||23.8|
|Darwin Airport||32.2||+0.8||35.2||24 Sep||21.2||+0.2||14.9||20 Jun||34.8||average||82%|
|Delamere Weapons Range AWS||32.3||+0.9||39.8||23 Sep||17.1||+0.4||7.5||20 Jun||0.4||low||4%|
|Douglas River||34.2||+1.1||40.4||23 Sep||16.1||+1.1||4.2||20 Jun||0.6||average||3%|
|Jabiru Airport AWS||34.5||+1.1||38.7||26 Sep||20.5||+0.5||13.0||20 Jun||24.6||high||108%|
|Katherine Aviation Museum||32.7||+0.6||39.0||23 Sep||15.9||+0.2||6.0||20 Jun||0.2||low||2%|
|Mango Farm||34.0||+0.9||40.6||23 Sep||16.7||-0.2||5.9||20 Jun||0.5||low||2%|
|McCluer Island AWS||28.6||31.3||23 Sep||24.3||20.9||20 Jun||89.6||very high||166%|
|Noonamah AWS||34.8||39.1||1 Sep||18.3||8.4||20 Jun||89.6|
|Pine Creek Council||33.0||38.4||23 Sep||19.1||10.6||17 Jul||6.8|
|Pirlangimpi AWS||32.6||+0.7||36.3||25 Sep||20.6||+0.9||14.6||9 Jul||51.0||average||77%|
|Point Fawcett AWS||31.1||+0.6||34.4||27 Sep||19.2||-0.7||12.4||10 Jul||53.2||high||122%|
|Tindal RAAF AWS||33.0||+1.1||39.5||23 Sep||16.6||+0.5||6.8||20 Jun||1.2||average||8%|
|Arnhem (district 14BC)|
|Alyangula Police||29.5||0.0||33.3||30 Sep||19.9||+0.7||13.9||19 Jun||144.2||highest||295%|
|Gove Airport||29.3||+0.4||32.5||24 Sep||20.0||-0.6||14.3||22 May||343.4||very high||234%|
|Maningrida Aero AWS||31.4||36.2||27 Sep||19.8||14.0||11 Jun||19.4|
|Milingimbi AWS||31.1||35.7||28 Sep||20.4||14.3||19 Jun||136.8|
|Ngayawili AWS||30.7||34.4||28 Sep||20.6||15.3||16 Jul||102.2|
|Warruwi AWS||30.1||+0.4||33.8||29 Sep||23.0||+0.5||18.1||20 Jun||19.6||average||95%|
|Roper-Mcarthur (district 14DE)|
|Borroloola AWS||32.7||+0.9||39.2||26 Sep||14.7||+0.3||5.9||18 Jul||0.6||very low||7%|
|Daly Waters AWS||32.4||+1.6||39.3||22 Sep||13.3||-1.0||4.2||19 Jun||0.2||low||1%|
|Larrimah||32.3||+0.8||38.5||22 Sep||14.3||-0.6||5.0||20 Jun||0||lowest||0%|
|McArthur River Mine||33.0||+1.2||39.3||26 Sep||15.7||+1.3||5.7||17 Jul||0.4||low||2%|
|Wollogorang||32.0||+1.0||37.9||25 Sep||13.2||-0.3||3.0||17 Jul||0||lowest||0%|
|Victoria (district 14F)|
|Kidman Springs||33.3||+1.0||40.0||23 Sep||4.8||17 Jul||0||lowest||0%|
|Timber Creek||33.9||+1.3||39.8||22 Sep||16.3||-0.7||5.7||21 Jun||0||lowest||0%|
|Victoria River Downs||33.1||+1.7||39.8||22 Sep||13.8||-0.3||3.6||19 Jun||0||lowest||0%|
|Wave Hill||32.0||+1.2||39.0||22 Sep||14.0||+0.5||3.0||19 Jun||0.6||low||2%|
|Barkly (district 15A)|
|Elliott||31.6||+0.6||40.0||22 Sep||14.2||+0.2||5.5||20 Jun||0||lowest||0%|
|Tennant Creek Airport||28.7||+1.5||38.6||22 Sep||15.8||+0.9||8.0||18 Jun||7.8||average||28%|
|Alice Springs (district 15B)|
|Alice Springs Airport||24.2||+1.7||37.4||21 Sep||8.7||+2.0||0.2||17 Jul||41.2||average||63%|
|Arltunga||23.8||36.2||20 Sep||8.0||-1.7||5 Aug||47.6||average||85%|
|Curtin Springs||24.3||+1.3||36.8||20 Sep||8.1||+1.5||-0.9||16 Jul||47.6||average||77%|
|Jervois||26.1||+1.2||39.2||21 Sep||10.7||+2.8||1.0||17 Jul||18.6||low||33%|
|Rabbit Flat||30.3||+1.3||40.1||20 Sep||11.2||+1.5||0.5||16 Jul||22.8||average||83%|
|Territory Grape Farm AWS||26.1||+0.8||37.1||20 Sep||9.6||+1.5||1.7||16 Jul||38.2||average||72%|
|Watarrka||24.9||+0.5||35.4||21 Sep||9.3||+0.2||-1.0||14 Jul||37.7||average||54%|
|Yuendumu||26.9||+2.2||37.2||20 Sep||10.9||+1.6||1.4||20 Jun||33.9||average||51%|
|Yulara Aero AWS||24.0||+0.5||35.9||19 Sep||7.9||+0.7||-0.9||17 Jul||37.8||average||64%|
This statement has been prepared based on information available at 1 pm on Thursday 1 October 2009. 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 2008.
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.