Sydneysiders shivered through the commute this morning with southerly winds making it feel bitterly cold. The strong southerly winds are expected to continue into Saturday but should ease in time for the 8am start of the City2Surf on Sunday.
A low pressure system over the Tasman Sea combined with a large high over the Bight is sending these strong winds and a damaging surf onto the NSW coast. Showers are likely to hit the eastern suburbs and may even reach the city from this afternoon right through Sunday afternoon.
Winds have gusted up to 85km/h on the harbour this morning, which are the strongest winds Sydneysiders have experienced for two months. Winds blew as high as 111km/h at the highly exposed station of Wattamolla in the Royal National Park.
These winds are drawing a bitterly cold airmass over the state and are creating an uncomfortable wind chill factor. Sydney's temperature fell below eight degrees this morning, but the relentless winds have made it feel closer to three degrees.
Looking ahead to the start of the City2Surf, winds will ease slightly to around 30km/h which is still a fresh wind and could affect runners. For the first half of the course this should not cause too much upset, with enough shelter. However headwinds will start to affect runners after the uphill stretch from Vaucluse turning the corner. Wind gusts of 50km/h can occur on higher ground of the course. The final stretch could be a breeze if legs allow when the gusty winds will push runners across the finish line.
Temperature wise it will not be quite as cold but still below average with a morning temperature of 11 degrees not climbing any higher than a top of 16, which is two degrees colder than usual for this time of year.
If you decide to head to the ski resorts to enjoy these wintry conditions you will not be disappointed. The New South Wales resorts have seen widespread 20-40cm of snow during the past 48 hours, with Perisher gaining more than 50cm. This has been a very cold snow creating powdery conditions for riders.
© Weatherzone 2012
16:06 EST The weather bureau has implemented a new system of forecasting the seasonal outlook called Predictive Ocean Atmosphere Model for Australia, or POAMA.