Top End Rain Sweet, But Won't Last
Most people in the Darwin, Palmerston and rural area woke up to rainfall yesterday morning – the first widespread rainfall so far this wet season, dumping 30-50mm into many rain gauges.
The highest overnight total was 118mm at Point Stuart, with 49mm at Darwin Airport – so far this month, we've recorded just over half of the average total November rainfall of 143mm at the airport.
A trough moving through the base of the Top End was to thank for the rainfall last night, but a drier surge of air will follow, so there's only a slight chance of showers or storms for the next week in the NW Top End.
The drier air means fewer clouds, so the temperatures will rise with day time maximums of 34-35°C for Darwin, 36-37° in the rural area, dropping only to around 26°C overnight.
Severe fire weather conditions will affect the Carpentaria and Gregory districts until Thursday, and possibly during the weekend too and a low-intensity heatwave is forecast for much of the Top End towards the weekend.
Only 1.8mm made it into the rain gauge at Tindal Airport Monday night – 97.2mm is the November average.
Rest of the build-up and wet season
The positive Indian Ocean Dipole is the main climate factor driving weather conditions during the build-up, and will mean continued hotter and drier than average weather conditions, although we can expect to see more showers and storms continue through this month and next.
Once the first active monsoon burst arrives (likely to be early in January), all climate influencers (ESNO and IOD) are expected to be neutral, which means we can expect a typical wet season between January and April.