Tasmania in winter 2017: cold nights, below average rain

Winter brought plenty of cold nights to Tasmania, with a few sites (including Launceston) setting new records. Daytime temperatures were close to average overall. Rainfall was below average for most of the state, with some sites on the East Coast having their driest winter on record.

Rainfall below average

  • Winter rainfall was below average for most of Tasmania, with the East Coast particularly dry: some sites had seasonal totals below 20 mm, several had less than 50 mm, and a few had their driest winter on record or their driest for many years
  • Rainfall in June was particularly low (the driest June for the State since 2007), especially in the east
  • Rainfall totals were close to average in the southwest, and on King Island
  • The State's total rainfall was 17% below average, the driest winter since 2008 and well down on the very wet winter last year

Cold nights, but days close to average

  • Cold nights were common during July and August, especially inland and in the east
  • A few sites had their lowest winter temperature on record
  • Some sites (including Launceston) had their lowest winter mean daily minimum temperature on record
  • Long runs of cold mornings were common: for example Bushy Park's temperature dropped to 5 °C or lower on all but seven mornings this winter (all of them in June), a record for the site
  • The State's mean minimum temperature for winter was 0.46 °C below average,
  • Daytime temperatures were close to or a little above average overall, with a few cold days countered by several relatively warm ones; the State's mean maximum temperature for winter was 0.08 °C above average
  • Tasmania's mean temperature for winter was 0.18 °C below average, about a degree cooler than winter 2016 but half a degree warmer than winter 2015

Cold nights and below-average rain in Hobart

  • Like most of the State, cold nights were common in Hobart: the mean daily minimum temperature at Hobart (Ellerslie Road) was 4.7 °C, which is 0.3 °C below the long-term average. The coldest morning was 0.6 °C on 22 June, and the warmest morning was on 12 June when the minimum temperature was 10.2 °C
  • Days were warmer than average, with the mean daily maximum temperature for Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 13.1 °C, which is 0.8 °C above the long-term average. The warmest day was 18.1 °C on 10 August, and the coolest day was on 18 August when the temperature reached 9.1 °C
  • Winter was much drier than average in Hobart, with total rainfall for Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 108.8 mm, which is 68% of the long-term average

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Extremes in winter 2017
Hottest day 19.7 °C at Swansea (Francis Street) on 10 Aug
Warmest days on average 14.8 °C at Bicheno (Council Depot)
Coolest days on average 3.2 °C at Mount Read
Coldest day -2.5 °C at kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) on 27 Aug
Coldest night -10.4 °C at Liawenee on 3 Jul
Coolest nights on average -2.4 °C at Liawenee
Warmest nights on average 9.0 °C at Hogan Island
Warmest night 13.0 °C at Swan Island on 18 Jun
Warmest on average overall 11.2 °C at Hogan Island
Coolest on average overall 0.9 °C at kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Wettest overall 1199.4 mm at Mount Read
Driest overall 20.7 mm at Swansea (Francis Street)
Wettest day 60.0 mm at Mount Read on 6 Jul
Strongest wind gust 148 km/h at Hogan Island on 12 Aug

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 lowest winter total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Fingal (Legge Street) 56.6 63.4 in 1997 134 180.6
Lewis Hill (St Pauls River) 50.0 54.0 in 1979 87 175.3
Coles Bay (Freycinet) 51.4 85.0 in 1980 53 174.3

Lowest winter total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
lower
Average for
winter
Ormley 60.2 59.2 in 1919* 158.1
Bicheno (Council Depot) 25.5 15.7 in 1919* 163.0
St Marys (Cullenswood) 53.0 50.2 in 1940* 245.7
Levendale 79.2 76.6 in 1940* 200.2

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




Record highest winter mean daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 14.5 14.4 in 2014 21 13.7



Record lowest winter temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Ross (The Boulevards) -7.6 on 1 Jul -6.7 on 2 Jun 1998 24 1.8
Friendly Beaches -0.9 on 12 Jul = -0.9 on 24 Jul 2009 21 6.1
A previously reported value of -7.8 °C for Lake St Clair on the 31st has since been shown to be incorrect, the result of problems with the instrument (the true value would have been several degrees warmer).


Record lowest winter mean daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 1.5 1.6 in 1982 33 3.0
Fingal (Legge Street) -0.9 -0.2 in 2006 30 1.0
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) -0.8 -0.6 in 2015 27 0.5
Ross (The Boulevards) 0.0 0.4 in 2006 23 1.8
Melton Mowbray (North Stockman) 0.8 = 0.8 in 2010 20 2.3
Sheffield School Farm 2.5 2.6 in 2015 20 3.7

Lowest winter mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Average for
winter
Orford (Aubin Court) 3.3 2.9 in 1985 4.0
Devonport Airport 3.9 3.8 in 1995 5.0
Hobart Airport 3.9 =3.9 in 1997 4.5



Record lowest winter mean temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Fingal (Legge Street) 5.9 = 5.9 in 2015 30 6.9



Summary statistics for winter 2017
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
winter
2017
Diff
from
average
Highest for
winter
2017
Mean for
winter
2017
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
winter
2017
Total for
winter
2017
Average
for
winter
Rank of
winter
2017
Fraction of
winter
average
Northern (district 91)
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 14.5 +0.8 18.2 2 Jun 5.2 -0.6 -0.5 20 Aug 224.9 257.7 average 87%
Burnie (Round Hill) 13.4 +0.3 16.6 14 Aug 5.9 -0.4 1.7 28 Aug 230.6 337.4 low 68%
Cape Grim 12.6   15.3 17 Jun 8.3   3.6 22 Jun 294.8
Cape Grim BAPS (Comparison) 12.8 0.0 16.0 17 Jun 8.2 -0.2 3.7 27 Aug 296.0 295.1 average 100%
Cressy Research Station 12.1 -0.3 16.3 14 Aug 0.0 -2.0 -6.1 1 Jul 121.0 193.8 low 62%
Devonport Airport 13.1 0.0 17.0 14 Aug 3.9 -1.1 -0.8 11 Jul 192.2 265.4 low 72%
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 13.2 0.0 17.5 3 Jun 1.5 -1.5 -3.3 3 Jul 185.8 232.7 average 80%
Launceston Airport 12.1 -0.2 16.3 14 Aug 1.0 -1.6 -5.0 1 Jul 139.4 201.3 average 69%
Low Head 13.0 -0.1 15.8 3 Jun 6.4 -0.8 1.9 20 Aug 140.0 229.5 v low 61%
Luncheon Hill (Forestry) 10.4 -0.6 13.7 14 Aug 5.0 -0.2 0.0 28 Aug 483.8 561.7 average 86%
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 12.1 -0.3 16.4 3 Jun 3.4 -0.6 -1.5 24 Jun 261.4 341.6 low 77%
Sheffield School Farm 11.0 -0.4 14.9 13 Jun 2.5 -1.2 -2.5 28 Aug 288.6 383.7 low 75%
Smithton Aerodrome 13.3 -0.2 16.9 17 Jun 3.9 -1.1 -2.1 21 Jul 257.2 332.9 low 77%
Wynyard Airport 13.3 +0.2 16.9 14 Aug 2.4 -1.5 -2.7 31 Aug 223.2 356.4 v low 63%
East Coast (district 92)
Bicheno (Council Depot) 14.8 +0.4 18.9 14 Aug 6.0 -0.4 1.8 12 Jul 25.5 163.0 v low 16%
Fingal (Legge Street) 12.8 +0.1 17.4 10 Aug -0.9 -1.9 -7.2 1 Jul 56.6 180.6 lowest 31%
Friendly Beaches 14.2 0.0 19.5 10 Aug 5.2 -0.9 -0.9 12 Jul 33.4 154.6 v low 22%
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) 9.0 0.0 14.8 13 Jun -0.8 -1.3 -6.7 1 Jul 102.8 241.0 v low 43%
larapuna (Eddystone Point) 14.1 +0.7 17.7 2 Jun 6.7 -0.5 1.2 27 Jul 117.0 220.7 v low 53%
Maria Island (Point Lesueur) 12.9 -0.2 17.1 10 Aug 7.2 -0.4 3.4 27 Aug 60.4 120.1 v low 50%
Orford (Aubin Court) 13.3 -0.2 18.3 10 Aug 3.3 -0.7 -1.7 3 Jul 70.9 171.5 v low 41%
St Helens Aerodrome 14.0 +0.1 18.1 14 Aug 3.9 -1.3 -0.5 27 Jul
Swan Island 13.6 0.0 16.4 29 Jul 8.1 -0.6 3.3 19 Aug 133.6 191.4 v low 70%
Swansea (Francis Street) 14.0   19.7 10 Aug 3.5   -2.8 1 Jul 20.7
Midlands (district 93)
Ross (The Boulevards) 11.8 0.0 16.4 14 Aug 0.0 -1.8 -7.6 1 Jul 70.1 125.8 v low 56%
Southeast (district 94)
Campania (Kincora) 13.6 0.0 18.8 20 Jun 2.5 -1.2 -3.2 1 Jul 76.8 125.3 v low 61%
Cape Bruny (Cape Bruny) 12.3 -0.2 17.6 10 Aug 6.4 -0.4 3.4 3 Aug 242.4 239.7 average 101%
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 12.1 +0.5 17.5 10 Aug 6.7 +0.3 3.3 27 Aug 254.6 277.1 average 92%
Dennes Point 12.8   17.3 20 Jun 5.9   1.9 3 Aug 134.8
Dover 12.5 -0.2 19.2 10 Aug 2.9 -0.9 -1.5 22 Jun 256.4 257.3 average 100%
Dunalley (Stroud Point) 12.8   18.4 10 Aug 6.1   1.4 1 Jul 85.6
Grove (Research Station) 12.7 0.0 18.2 10 Aug 1.3 -1.0 -4.2 1 Jul 173.6 214.4 average 81%
Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 13.1 +0.8 18.1 10 Aug 4.7 -0.3 0.6 22 Jun 108.8 159.7 low 68%
Hobart Airport 13.5 +0.5 18.6 10 Aug 3.9 -0.6 -0.9 3 Jul 59.2 122.3 v low 48%
kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) 3.3 +0.3 10.4 10 Jun -1.5 -0.2 -6.1 27 Aug 113.0 209.0 low 54%
Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse 11.0 -0.2 16.4 10 Aug 7.1 +0.3 2.6 27 Aug 363.2 370.2 average 98%
Melton Mowbray (North Stockman) 12.1 +0.2 17.1 20 Jun 0.8 -1.5 -5.5 8 Jul 83.6 119.8 low 70%
Tasman Island 11.1 -0.2 15.5 15 Jun 6.5 -0.3 2.3 27 Aug 187.2 208.4 low 90%
Tunnack Fire Station 10.0 0.0 14.9 15 Jun 0.3 -1.6 -5.8 1 Jul 84.6 168.6 low 50%
Derwent Valley (district 95)
Bushy Park (Bushy Park Estates) 12.4 +0.5 18.9 10 Aug 0.6 -1.4 -3.6 3 Aug 103.4 151.8 low 68%
Maydena Post Office 10.5 -0.6 18.0 10 Aug 1.9 -0.6 -1.6 2 Jul 353.4 367.1 average 96%
Ouse Fire Station 12.0 -0.4 17.8 10 Aug 0.1 -1.5 -5.2 22 Jun 146.0 161.1 average 91%
Central Plateau (district 96)
Butlers Gorge 7.9 +0.3 12.5 13 Jun 0.1 +0.1 -6.6 2 Jul 485.4 508.2 average 96%
Lake St Clair National Park 7.2 -0.5 11.8 9 Aug        
Liawenee 6.3 +0.1 14.5 13 Jun -2.4 -1.1 -10.4 3 Jul 217.8 345.1 v low 63%
West Coast (district 97)
Cape Sorell 12.7 +0.6 16.4 3 Jun 7.7 +0.4 3.5 27 Aug 311.0 444.7 low 70%
Hartz Mountain (Keoghs Pimple) 5.7 -0.8 12.9 10 Aug 1.1 -0.6 -2.7 27 Aug 327.0 320.8 average 102%
Low Rocky Point 12.3   17.2 10 Aug 6.9   1.6 2 Aug 402.0 421.8 average 95%
Mount Read 3.2 -1.0 6.9 3 Jul -0.2 -0.6 -5.0 27 Aug 1199.4 1092.8 high 110%
Scotts Peak Dam 9.6 -0.1 16.3 10 Aug 3.3 -0.2 -0.7 3 Aug 608.0 609.3 average 100%
Strahan Aerodrome 12.7 +0.1 16.9 10 Aug 5.6 +0.2 -2.0 3 Jul 519.8 511.0 average 102%
Warra 8.9 -0.2 14.8 10 Aug 1.9 -0.9 -3.3 3 Aug 551.0 514.8 average 107%
King Island (district 98)
King Island Airport 13.6 0.0 16.7 15 Aug 7.6 -0.2 1.8 2 Aug 357.8 328.3 average 109%
Flinders Island (district 99)
Flinders Island Airport 13.7 -0.1 19.1 10 Aug 6.4 -0.3 -2.2 3 Jul 203.2 230.9 average 88%
Hogan Island 13.4 +0.1 17.6 29 Jul 9.0 -0.2 4.8 18 Aug 201.2 205.6 average 98%
Note: From 2017, information about Macquarie Island can be found in the climate summary for the Remote Islands and Antarctica

Notes

The Seasonal climate summary, generally published on the first working day of each month, 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. 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 statement was updated on 5 September 2017, to remove a spurious record from Lake St Clair. It had been prepared based on information available at 9 am on Friday 1 September 2017. 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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