Tasmania in winter 2015: Drier in the northeast with below average temperatures

Winter 2015 saw below average temperatures and below average rainfall across Tasmania. With the winter mean temperature being the coolest since 1966, there were plenty of cool days and nights throughout the season, and several widespread snow events. It was persistently dry in the northeast, particularly towards the end of the season.

  • Below-average rain, especially in the northeast
  • Snow to low levels during August
  • Coolest winter mean temperature since 1966
  • Coolest winter days since 1992
  • Coolest winter nights since 1995
  • Coolest winter nights in Hobart since 1992

Winter 2015 has been the coolest winter since 1966 with the statewide mean temperature coming in equal 6th coolest on record. With most days below average, the winter mean maximum temperature was 10th lowest on record and the coolest since 1992. Days were particularly cooler than average during August when a series of vigorous cold fronts brought snow to low levels about the state. Nights were also cooler than average, with the statewide mean minimum temperature coming in as 10th coolest on record (lowest since 1995). The coldest night was observed on August 8th at Liawenee on the Central Plateau, when the minimum temperature dropped to -11.1°C. Winter nights at Hobart (Ellerslie Road) were the coolest since 1992 with an average of 4.5°C.

With the generally cool conditions, several temperature records were set. Both Wynyard Airport and Devonport Airport observed their lowest winter temperature on record. A few sites had their lowest winter mean daily maximum temperature on record or their lowest winter mean daily minimum temperature on record. Several other sites had their lowest mean daily maximum, lowest mean daily minimum, or lowest mean temperature (the average of the daily maximum and daily minimum) in more than 20 years. The statewide mean temperature anomaly this winter ranks as equal 6th lowest on record and the coolest since 1966. As well as being cooler than the long-term average, several sites had their lowest winter mean temperature on record.

The State's total rainfall was about 16% below average and the lowest winter rainfall for the state as a whole since 2008. Rainfall was below average along the west coast, most of the north and much of the east coast. It was particularly dry along parts of the northeast coast, extending into the midlands areas where less than 60% of the long-term average winter total was recorded. Compared to last winter, it was drier in the northeast of the state, but slightly wetter in the west.

Temperatures were sufficiently cold that snow was reported down to low levels across much of the state on several occasions during winter, with a particularly unusual low level snow occurring during August. There were strong and gusty winds throughout the season. A record wind gust of 185 km/h was recorded at Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse on the afternoon of the June 8th, resulting in a new Australian record June wind gust.

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Extremes in winter 2015
Hottest day 20.0 °C at Campania (Kincora) on 7 Jun
20.0 °C at Swansea (Francis Street) on 21 Aug
Warmest days on average 13.9 °C at Bicheno (Council Depot)
Coolest days on average 2.2 °C at Mount Wellington
Coldest day -3.7 °C at Mount Wellington on 5 Aug
Coldest night -11.1 °C at Liawenee on 8 Aug
Coolest nights on average -2.5 °C at Liawenee
Warmest nights on average 8.4 °C at Hogan Island
Warmest night 13.6 °C at Low Head on 7 Jun
Warmest on average overall 10.6 °C at Hogan Island
Coolest on average overall 0.0 °C at Mount Wellington
Wettest overall 982.2 mm at *Mount Read
Wettest day 81.0 mm at Strathgordon (Gordon Power Station) on 9 Jun
Strongest wind gust 185 km/h at Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse on 8 Jun

* note:The true total at Mount Read is probably higher, as it is likely some snow was lost.


Maps
ObservedAnomalyDecile rank
Total
rainfall
Map of Rainfall totals Map of Percentage of normal rainfall Map of Rainfall deciles
Mean
daily
maximum
temperatures
Map of Mean maximum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature
Mean
daily
minimum
temperatures
Map of Mean minimum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean minimum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature

Click on a map to show it full size in a pop-up window


Record highest winter daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Judbury (Huon River) 50.4 on 29 Aug 43.8 on 26 Jun 2009 21



Record lowest winter mean daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 11.6 = 11.6 in 1992 35 12.4
Strahan Aerodrome 11.8 12.1 in 1992 22 12.6
Ross (The Boulevards) 10.7 10.9 in 1995 21 11.9

Lowest winter mean daily maximum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Average for
winter
Dover 11.8 11.6 in 1992 12.7
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) 8.2 7.8 in 1992 9.0
Flinders Island Airport 13.2 13.1 in 1994 13.8
Lake St Clair National Park 6.6 6.5 in 1992* 7.8
Cape Grim BAPS (Comparison) 11.9 =11.9 in 1992* 12.8
Devonport Airport 12.5 12.4 in 1995 13.1
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 12.6 12.4 in 1995 13.2
Macquarie Island 4.5 3.5 in 1995 5.0
Marrawah 12.1 =12.1 in 1995 12.6

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




Record lowest winter temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Wynyard Airport -3.6 on 21 Jun = -3.6 on 25 Jul 2002 29 3.9
Devonport Airport -2.2 on 19 Jul -2.0 on 10 Jul 1997 24 5.0



Record lowest winter mean daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Bicheno (Council Depot) 5.6 = 5.6 in 2006 40 6.4
Fingal (Legge Street) -0.2 = -0.2 in 2006 28 1.0
Dover 2.6 2.7 in 2008 25 3.8
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) -0.6 -0.4 in 2008 25 0.6
Cape Grim BAPS (Comparison) 7.4 7.6 in 2007 21 8.5

Lowest winter mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Average for
winter
Burnie (Round Hill) 5.0 4.5 in 1971* 6.3
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 1.8 1.6 in 1982* 3.0
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 3.2 2.3 in 1978* 4.0
Cape Sorell 6.7 6.5 in 1951* 7.3
Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 4.5 4.4 in 1992 5.0
Mount Wellington -2.2 -2.9 in 1994 -1.3
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 5.9 5.5 in 1995 6.4
Devonport Airport 4.0 3.8 in 1995 5.0
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 6.6 6.5 in 1995 7.4
Macquarie Island 0.6 0.2 in 1995 1.6

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




Record lowest winter mean temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 7.2 = 7.2 in 1982 31 8.1
Fingal (Legge Street) 5.9 = 5.9 in 1992 28 6.9
Dover 7.2 7.3 in 1992 25 8.3
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) 3.7 4.0 in 1992 25 4.8
Strahan Aerodrome 8.2 = 8.2 in 2007 22 9.1
Cape Grim BAPS (Comparison) 9.7 9.8 in 1992 21 10.6
Ross (The Boulevards) 5.7 6.1 in 1995 21 6.9

Lowest winter mean temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Average for
winter
Burnie (Round Hill) 8.9 8.7 in 1971* 9.7
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 7.4 7.0 in 1978* 8.2
Marrawah 9.3 =9.3 in 1992 9.9
Bicheno (Council Depot) 9.8 =9.8 in 1995 10.4
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 8.8 8.4 in 1995 9.0
Devonport Airport 8.2 8.1 in 1995 9.1
Flinders Island Airport 9.7 =9.7 in 1995 10.2
Hobart Airport 8.4 8.2 in 1995 8.7
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 10.0 9.8 in 1995 10.5
Macquarie Island 2.5 1.9 in 1995 3.3

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




Summary statistics for winter 2015
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
winter
2015
Diff
from
average
Highest for
winter
2015
Mean for
winter
2015
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
winter
2015
Total for
winter
2015
Average
for
winter
Rank of
winter
2015
Fraction of
winter
average
Northern (district 91)
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 13.1 -0.6 16.8 27 Aug 5.1 -0.7 -0.5 18 Aug 184.8 247.2 low 75%
Burnie (Round Hill) 12.8 -0.3 16.2 12 Jul 5.0 -1.3 0.6 1 Jun 222.5 336.6 low 66%
Cape Grim 11.7   15.3 7 Jun 7.5   2.9 7 Jul 299.8
Cape Grim BAPS (Comparison) 11.9 -0.9 15.7 7 Jun 7.4 -1.1 3.1 3 Aug 310.0 289.2 average 107%
Cressy Research Station 11.4 -1.0 16.2 22 Aug 0.9 -1.1 -6.4 19 Jul 101.0 189.1 v low 53%
Devonport Airport 12.5 -0.6 16.0 27 Aug 4.0 -1.0 -2.2 19 Jul 180.3 263.1 low 69%
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 12.6 -0.6 16.7 27 Aug 1.8 -1.2 -3.4 21 Jun 153.9 230.9 low 67%
Launceston Airport 11.3 -1.1 15.5 26 Jun 1.2 -1.5 -5.4 4 Jun 136.8 200.9 low 68%
Low Head 12.2 -1.0 15.2 27 Aug 6.3 -1.0 0.9 18 Jul 146.2 224.1 low 65%
Luncheon Hill (Forestry) 10.1 -1.0 14.0 27 Aug 4.0 -1.3 -0.9 3 Aug 553.8 557.1 average 99%
Marrawah 12.1 -0.5 15.7 7 Jun 6.5 -0.6 2.2 18 Jul 335.8 392.4 low 86%
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 11.6 -0.8 16.0 27 Aug 3.2 -0.8 -3.0 4 Aug 233.2 340.2 low 69%
Smithton Aerodrome 12.8 -0.7 16.3 7 Jun 4.1 -0.9 -3.9 20 Jun 279.6 326.0 average 86%
Wynyard Airport 12.6 -0.5 16.0 7 Jun 3.0 -0.9 -3.6 21 Jun 259.8 354.5 low 73%
East Coast (district 92)
Bicheno (Council Depot) 13.9 -0.5 19.5 6 Jun 5.6 -0.8 0.9 4 Aug 100.2 163.2 low 61%
Fingal (Legge Street) 11.9 -0.8 18.3 6 Jun -0.2 -1.2 -7.2 19 Jul 108.2 180.3 low 60%
Friendly Beaches 13.4 -0.8 19.1 21 Aug 4.9 -1.2 -0.6 19 Jul 115.6 151.8 low 76%
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) 8.2 -0.8 13.2 21 Aug -0.6 -1.2 -6.2 21 Jun 137.6 241.2 low 57%
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 13.4 -0.2 16.8 26 Jun 6.6 -0.8 0.6 18 Aug 140.6 221.4 low 64%
Maria Island (Point Lesueur) 12.3 -0.8 17.5 22 Aug 6.8 -0.9 2.2 3 Aug 86.8 120.8 v low 72%
St Helens Aerodrome 13.2 -0.8 18.0 6 Jun 4.0 -1.3 -0.9 3 Jul 116.8 168.1 low 69%
Swan Island 12.9 -0.7 16.6 23 Jun 7.7 -1.0 3.5 18 Aug 190.8 190.9 average 100%
Swansea (Francis Street) 13.2   20.0 21 Aug 3.4   -2.9 19 Jul 75.0
Midlands (district 93)
Ross (The Boulevards) 10.7 -1.2 15.6 6 Jun 0.7 -1.1 -6.1 19 Jul 95.0 125.9 average 75%
Southeast (district 94)
Campania (Kincora) 12.7 -1.0 20.0 7 Jun 3.2 -0.5 -2.7 19 Jul 96.4 125.4 low 77%
Cape Bruny (Cape Bruny) 11.8 -0.7 18.2 7 Jun 5.8 -1.1 1.6 3 Aug 211.4 237.8 average 89%
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 11.7 +0.1 18.4 7 Jun 5.9 -0.5 0.9 5 Aug 199.1 277.3 low 72%
Dennes Point 12.1   19.6 7 Jun 5.6   0.9 3 Aug 148.0
Dover 11.8 -0.9 18.0 7 Jun 2.6 -1.2 -2.0 8 Jul 285.4 256.4 average 111%
Dunalley (Stroud Point) 12.2   19.3 7 Jun 5.7   0.7 3 Aug 108.6
Grove (Research Station) 11.9 -0.8 19.0 7 Jun 1.5 -0.7 -3.8 9 Jul 249.2 210.3 average 118%
Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 12.5 +0.2 19.8 7 Jun 4.5 -0.5 0.3 22 Jun 131.0 159.7 average 82%
Hobart Airport 12.8 -0.2 19.6 7 Jun 4.0 -0.5 -0.9 3 Jul 77.6 122.6 low 63%
Melton Mowbray (North Stockman) 11.0 -1.0 18.6 7 Jun 1.5 -0.8 -4.7 8 Jul 99.4 118.8 average 84%
Mount Wellington 2.2 -0.8 9.0 13 Jun -2.2 -0.9 -7.5 3 Aug 112.0 213.0 low 53%
Tunnack Fire Station 9.0 -1.1 14.1 22 Aug 0.8 -1.1 -6.3 8 Jul 112.2 168.0 low 67%
Derwent Valley (district 95)
Bushy Park (Bushy Park Estates) 12.1 +0.2 19.7 7 Jun 1.1 -0.9 -5.1 9 Jul 150.0 151.6 average 99%
Ouse Fire Station 11.6 -0.8 19.3 7 Jun 0.9 -0.7 -6.8 8 Jul 152.8 159.2 average 96%
Central Plateau (district 96)
Butlers Gorge 7.3 -0.3 12.6 26 Aug -0.4 -0.4 -6.6 9 Jul 436.6 506.9 low 86%
Lake St Clair National Park 6.6 -1.2 11.8 26 Aug -1.0 -1.2 -6.7 8 Jul 521.0 611.9 average 85%
Liawenee 5.1 -1.2 12.0 13 Jun -2.5 -1.3 -11.1 8 Aug 244.6 354.9 v low 69%
West Coast (district 97)
Cape Sorell     15.2 26 Aug 6.7 -0.6 2.8 8 Aug 237.8 445.4 lowest 53%
Hartz Mountain (Keoghs Pimple) 5.2 -1.4 11.4 26 Aug 0.5 -1.2 -4.3 3 Aug 291.4 315.2 average 92%
Low Rocky Point 11.7   15.5 15 Jun 6.2   1.9 8 Jul 328.0 418.5 low 78%
Scotts Peak Dam 8.7 -1.1 15.3 26 Aug 2.4 -1.2 -1.9 8 Jul 553.4 597.7 average 93%
Strahan Aerodrome 11.8 -0.8 15.8 7 Jun 4.7 -0.8 -1.8 24 Aug 456.2 502.8 average 91%
Warra 8.0 -1.2 14.6 7 Jun 1.5 -1.4 -3.7 8 Jul 568.6
King Island (district 98)
King Island Airport 12.8 -0.8 16.4 7 Jun 7.4 -0.4 1.4 31 Aug 231.8 325.4 low 71%
Flinders Island (district 99)
Flinders Island Airport 13.2 -0.6 17.8 21 Aug 6.2 -0.4 -1.9 20 Jun
Hogan Island 12.8 -0.6 16.6 21 Aug 8.4 -0.9 3.2 27 Jul 134.8 205.9 v low 65%
Antarctica and Macquarie Island (district 300)
Macquarie Island 4.5 -0.5 7.0 7 Jun 0.6 -1.0 -5.4 12 Jun 299.8 224.8 v high 133%

Notes

The Seasonal climate summary lists the main features of the weather in Tasmania 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.

A climate summary is generally published on the first working day of each month.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 9 am on Tuesday 1 September 2015. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

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.

The ACORN-SAT dataset is used for temperature area averages.

Further information

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