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Dry end to the wet season for the Top End

Craig McIntosh, Saturday April 21, 2018 - 15:19 EST

A generally healthy wet season across the Northern Territory's Top End is having a very dry April to finish it off.

This season's monsoon trough brought some very good rain totals to many places scattered across the Top End, especially late 2017 and early 2018. Generally, near or above-average rainfall was recorded in most centres. A stand out was the Mount Bundey South weather station in the Darwin-Daly district, recording over a metre of rain in January.

Darwin collected above-average rainfall from the start of November to the end of March, recording over 120% of what's normal for those five months. It was kicked along by a very healthy January, when over 857mm fell, and Tropical Cyclone Marcus in March, the first system to pass directly over the city since Tropical Cyclone Tracy in 1974.

Fast forward to April and most places are running well below the monthly rainfall average. The monsoon trough is migrating north and taking moisture with it. That's normal for this time of year, however the southeast trade winds that replace the northwest monsoonal winds have cut the moisture source off a little early.

Darwin is currently at 43% of the city's average April rainfall, two-thirds of the way through the month. Nhulunbuy is running at a measly 16%, whilst Mount Bundey South has seen less than 9mm so far this month, a far cry from the start of the year.

Some saving grace for locals is that with the southeasterly winds humidity drops, making it feel a lot more comfortable. Apart from a few scattered showers near coastal parts, what's left of the wet season looks to stay mostly dry for the Top End, an indication of what's to come over the next six months.

- Weatherzone

© Weatherzone 2018

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