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Late in season but the rain still counts for Top End

Brett Dutschke, Sunday March 31, 2013 - 13:37 EDT

Parts of the Top End of the Northern Territory have gained more than their monthly average rainfall in the past week, making up for some of wet season deficit.

Widespread 100-to-300mm has fallen over the Darwin-Daly, Arnhem, Roper McArthur and Victoria River districts with as much as 600mm on the north coast of the Arnhem.

Millingimbi on the north coast has gained 590mm since last Sunday morning, almost double its monthly March average for the past decade. This is also its wettest week in more than a decade.

Darwin picked up about 200mm in the week, its wettest week since this time last year. It takes its March total to 373mm, 52mm higher than its monthly average.

Nearby Maningrida amassed 500mm in the week, including 336mm in the past two days, its wettest two-day spell in more than a decade.

Recent rain has also been significantly high inland, including the Katherine area, where more than 300mm has fallen.

The Katherine Rural College has had its wettest week in two years, gaining about 350mm since last Sunday morning.

Flooding from all of this rain has been less severe than what it could have been this late in the wet season. It generally has only been minor. Much of this recent rain has been taken up by the drier-than-normal ground and rivers.

Almost all of the Top End is still drier-than average for the wet season so far. Darwin has had 1290mm since October, almost 300mm short of the October-to-March average.

Looking ahead, rainfall during the next few days will ease due to the monsoon trough and associated low being taken over by a more stable ridge of high pressure. By the time the high pressure ridge takes over, parts of the Top End may end up with more than their April average rainfall and more than their wet-season average.

The most likely area for a wetter-than-average wet season is the Arnhem coast and islands.

- Weatherzone

© Weatherzone 2013

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