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Troughs & a front crossing the southeast are driving rain, showers, gusty winds & a few storms over SA, VIC, TAS, & southern NSW. Moist onshore winds over southwest WA are bringing the odd light shower. High pressure is keeping elsewhere generally dry and settled.




ShowersSydney NSW



Possible ShowerMelbourne VIC



SunnyBrisbane QLD



CloudyPerth WA



Late ShowerAdelaide SA



Possible ShowerCanberra ACT



Late ShowerHobart TAS



SunnyDarwin NT



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Today, 7:28AM UTC

'Absolutely putrid' conditions ahead of fresh snowfalls

We warned you in our story yesterday that there might be a little rain today ahead of the next snowfalls in the Aussie High Country, and it seems like there's more than just a "a little" rain in some parts of the mountains. "Absolutely putrid at Mt Buller now. Hosing rain, windy, shrouded in fog. Do not like." These words, which no snow-lover wants to hear, were posted by a sodden skier on the forum at leading snow industry website at 2:45 pm on Thursday. This photo from Mt Buller backs up his observation, showing a pretty miserable scene with puddles of slush and water among the snow. Image: Not the greatest arvo of weather up at Mt Buller. Source: Supplied. Rain is also falling at other Victorian ski resorts and appears likely to move through the NSW ski areas this evening. But don't despair – snow is on the way! The question is: when will it arrive? With luck, the rain will turn to snow later tonight, and there’s an interesting way you can tell that colder air is coming. In May this year, just ahead of the ski season, we wrote a story about Mt William, a weather station situated at 1150m above sea level in The Grampians in western Victoria. If snowy weather is heading towards the mountains, the airmass will almost always pass through Mt William, which lies about 500 km west of the mountains. Mt William dropped almost two degrees, from 6.5°C to 4.7°C, between 2 pm and 4 pm. That's a time of day when temps would normally be rising, so it's a good indication that a colder airmass is indeed on its way. Let's move on to this week's wrap of snow conditions in NSW, Vic and Tas. Should I go to the snow this weekend?  Go. As we said last week, dress for snowy weather, but go. It should be a really great weekend down there with light to moderate snowfalls on Saturday, clearing at most resorts on Sunday before more snow comes early in the new week. Mt Hotham, Falls Creek and Mt Buller all have most of their lifts open despite Thursday's rain, so check the highlighted links for more info. Australia's lowest mainland resort, Mt Baw Baw, is still suffering from a thin snow cover, but still has four of its seven lifts open, with things set to improve in coming days. More info here. NSW Image: Thredbo has been looking pretty decent lately. Image: Thredbo Resort Facebook. Thredbo, Perisher, and Charlotte Pass all have all or most lifts spinning despite the rain, so check the highlighted links for updates. Tasmania Still not such great news at Mt Mawson and Ben Lomond, where the patchy snow cover remains suitable only for snow play, however a stack of snow looks likely to come in the next few days, and to very low levels by Monday. The tiny Tassie skifields should get a reboot out of the impending system, which they deserve as their winter has not been so great thus far, with all lifts closed for much of the season. As ever, please check the Weatherzone snow page for the latest cams, forecasts and other info.

Today, 2:06AM UTC

Flooding rain returns to southeastern Australia

Widespread rain and damaging winds will affect parts of southeastern Australia over the next 24 to 48 hours, with renewed flooding likely in parts of NSW, VIC and TAS. A cold front passing over Australia’s southeastern states will produce a mix of blustery showers and strong winds between Thursday and Saturday. The passage of the front should see around 10 to 30mm of rain fall over a board area extending from central NSW down to TAS and even across to southern districts of SA. Some places in western and northern TAS could pick up more than 50mm from this system. Image: Forecast accumulated rain during the 72 hours ending at 10pm AEST on Saturday, August 20, 2022. Most of the rain from this system will fall on Thursday and Friday, with some follow-up showers on Saturday. While the rainfall from this system won’t challenge records, it will be falling over already saturated catchments will likely cause flooding in some areas. This includes parts of NSW, VIC and TAS that are still recovering from last week’s heavy rain and flooding. In addition to the rain, damaging winds are also likely to accompany the cold front as it crosses eastern VIC and southern NSW on Thursday. Wind gusts had already exceeded 90 km/h at Melbourne Airport early on Wednesday night and reached 102 km/h at Mt Hotham shortly before lunchtime on Thursday. Numerous flood and severe weather warnings have been issued across southeastern Australia in response to this system. Be sure to check the latest advisories in your area for the most up-to-date information.


17 Aug 2022, 7:56AM UTC

Conveyor belt of cold fronts closing in

Here they come. One cold front after another for at least the next week for southeast Australia. This is good news for snow lovers, but not such wonderful news for those of us who don't enjoy wet, cold, windy weather. Image: The synoptic chart for next Tuesday, showing potentially the strongest and coldest front of the period approaching SE Australia. Adelaide, Melbourne, Hobart and Canberra (and everywhere in between) can expect a persistent spell of blustery, cool to cold, showery weather – with the first burst on Thursday into Friday morning, a second colder burst on Saturday, and the coldest outbreak of the period looking increasingly likely to arrive early next week. Sydney will duck the worst of it, with top temps staying in the high teens and even peaking in the low twenties on a couple of days in the warmer northwesterly wind flow between fronts, while Brisbane will completely avoid the wintry weather, with a prolonged spell of delightful fine days and top temps in the low-to-mid twenties. But the real story is down south. This is a classic Australian late winter pattern for the southeast and Adelaide will feel the first rumbles of it on Thursday – perhaps literally, as a thunderstorm in the morning or afternoon is possible. Melbourne could also see storms later on Thursday. As for the mountains, snow is coming as mentioned. How much? Image: Expect scenes like this over the weekend in Thredbo. Source: Author's pic. Well, it's probable that totals in the vicinity of 50 cm could accumulate at higher elevations by this time next week, and perhaps a little more. Be sure to keep checking the Weatherzone snow page for the latest. A little rain could fall on all but the highest peaks on Thursday in the warmish air ahead of the first front, but from then on, it all looks like the good stuff. At this stage, snow also looks likely to penetrate a fair way north next Monday or Tuesday, with the potential for good snowfalls on the Central Tablelands and Blue Mountains of the type which we haven't seen this winter since the first few days of June. We'll keep you posted.


Weather in Business


11 Jul 2022, 3:11AM UTC

Record month for wind power in Australia's National Electricity Market

New data shows June was one of the best ever months for renewable energy in Australia’s National Electricity Market and a record-breaking month for wind power. June 2022 was a relatively dry and cool month for much of eastern and southeastern Australia, with frequent periods of strong winds and clear skies. NSW registered its driest June since 1986, while Sydney and Brisbane had their sunniest June since 2004. This abundance of sunshine and wind created an ideal month for renewable energy generation in the National Electricity Market (NEM). The combined generation of solar (rooftop and utility), wind and hydropower across the NEM in June 2022 was 5,969 Gigawatt hours (GWh). This is the third highest monthly volume of renewable energy generation in the NEM in records dating back to 1998. Wind power Wind power had a record-breaking month in the NEM, with 2,527 GWh of generation in June 2022 beating the previous monthly record of 2472 GWh from July 2021. Victoria also set a new record for wind power in June this year, with 1,073 GWh easily surpassing the state’s previous record of 922 GWh from July 2021. Solar Power Solar power also had a strong month, with rooftop generation in June outperforming May 2022, despite May usually being the sunnier month. This was the first year on record where June rooftop solar generated more power than May. Utility solar also continued to see strong growth, producing 589 GWh in the NEM during June 2022, which was a big step up from 445 GWh in June 2021. Hydropower While June was a very dry month for large areas of eastern and southeastern Australia, an abundance of rain earlier in the year ensured that there was plenty of water available for hydropower. The NEM received 1,885 GWh of electricity from hydropower in June 2022, which was the 8th highest monthly value in 283 months of records dating back to 1998. The combination of favourable weather and continued growth in the sector caused June 2022 to be an exceptional, and in some cases record-breaking month for renewable energy in the NEM.


21 Jun 2022, 3:53AM UTC

La Nina floods make NSW ports too fresh for ships

La Niña has had a surprising impact on shipping operations in NSW this year, with increased freshwater outflows from flooded rivers affecting the behavior of ships entering some ports. Ships entering tidal ports in NSW are affected by local weather conditions, tides and waves, which can all affect a vessel’s ability to enter and operate safely within a port. One of the important things to consider when allowing larger vessels to enter NSW ports is the tide, which needs to be high enough to allow deep drafted vessels to enter, navigate and exit a port safely. This year, the window of time where water levels are high enough for ships to enter some NSW ports has been reduced by enhanced freshwater inflows from heavy rain and flooding. Image: Rainfall between January and May 2022 was in the top 10 percent of historical records for most of eastern NSW, with some areas receiving their highest rainfall on record for this period. Source: Bureau of Meteorology Freshwater is less dense than salt water, which allows ships to sit lower in the water. The prolific flooding seen in parts of eastern NSW earlier this year caused huge injections of freshwater into the coastal zone, which decreased salinity and affected shipping operations. According to Philip Perkins, Meteorologist and Sales Executive of Ports, Offshore and Safety at Weatherzone, "port users and operators at river-based terminals have been impacted by summer and autumn rainfall. “During high river flows water salinity is reduced. This means vessels can behave differently, resulting in elevated risk to vessels even at berth. Even when secured properly, berthed vessels can be impacted by passing traffic in the terminal.’’ In addition to the safety of ships, decreased salinity at river-based terminals can also reduce the window of time where larger vessels can enter these ports. In some cases, this may force ships to wait for the next high tide before entering or departing the port. Fortunately, river levels and discharge rates have now returned to more normal levels in eastern NSW. However, the ongoing influence of La Niña and a developing negative Indian Ocean Dipole increases the risk of more flooding in the months ahead. With the ground still holding a lot of water, any periods of heavy rain this winter and spring are likely to cause flooding, which may have immediate impacts on shipping operations.