Inland Australia to benefit from tropical moistureBrett Dutschke, Monday December 2, 2013 - 17:04 EDT
Parts of Australia's inland are about to receive their heaviest rain in more than six months, courtesy of a feed of moisture from the tropics.
Moisture (the highest levels since last wet season) are being drawn from the tropics to the south of the country by one of the strongest cold fronts in the past month. This will generate rain and storms across a large area.
Some desert, grazing and farming areas should see their biggest falls since May, March or even last year.
Birdsville, Tibooburra and Moomba have been extremely dry for the past six months, only receiving less than 10 millimetres of rain in that time, about 80mm short of the average. And the previous few months weren't particularly wet either.
It has been a more desperate story in the Longreach area where the rain deficit for the past nine months is about 200mm respectively.
Even more severe has been the Mt Isa area where less than 70mm has been recorded this year, a massive 300mm below average.
Further south, Mildura has just come off a lean winter and spring, receiving only about 50mm, more than 100mm short of the winter-spring average.
All of these locations and a few in between can look forward to some reasonably good rain in the next few days, potentially picking up their biggest rain in about nine months, generally 10-to-20mm.
While this is well short of being drought-breaking rain it should at least bring some relief, albeit only short-term.
Looking further ahead, there is unlikely to be any decent widespread follow-up rain for at least a few more weeks. It may take until about Christmas-New Year for the atmosphere to re-gain the moisture to a worthwhile level.
© Weatherzone 2013
More breaking news
Prolonged heatwave conditions are helping elevate the bushfire threat in parts of New South Wales this week, after a slow start to the season.
A four-day heatwave that begins on Wednesday will bring the same kind of conditions that saw more than 200 Queenslanders treated for heat stroke and dehydration last week.
The Great Northern Highway has been closed between Fitzroy Crossing and Halls Creek, as rivers rise across northern Western Australia following a week of steady rain.