Cold outbreak brings light snowfalls around Taralga

Friday June 27-28, 2002


A reasonably textbook polar cold outbreak was responsible for light snowfalls on the Southern Tablelands and higher western parts of the Central Tablelands, mainly on the night of the 27th as the front passed.

The air behind the front was so dry that further falls outside of the Snowy Mountains were very light, and were confined to the western Central Tablelands above around 1100m and the mountians west of Canberra above around 800m.

The following are the surface analyses for 12z on the 27th and 00z on the 28th.


Driving home from Sydney on the night of the 27th, I met with cloud and rain as I progressed west between Marulan and Goulburn. In the 20 odd kilometres between the two places the temperature dropped from around 7°C to 3.5°C. Then heading north out of Goulburn the temperature steadily dropped and rain turned to sleet as I gained altitude until just before Taralga where at about 920m the temp went below 1°C and sleet turned to snow. I progressed up to 1000m where snow was falling heavily and beginning to settle. The following morning the clouds had all but dried out and only a dusting of snow was left.

Given that the system was so dry I decided to head north along the Divide for the afternoon to see how places at higher elevations had fared. Showers of sleet fell intermittently all the way from Taralga, turning to light snow above around 1100m. As I progressed along the road and into 1200m the cover became solid and covered the road. The road where the pictures were taken ranges from 1200 to 1260m where depths on the road were between 5 and 20cm. Depths were of course greater off the road and in drifts.

Getting home required a bit of digging! Should have taken the 4WD!

The following are a few shots I took of the snowfalls. There's nothing spectacular here, just a record of the event and further proof to myself that I need a digital camera!

The first few are around Taralga and the last three are from Gurnang near Porter's Retreat, about 40km (road) to the north.

Taralga, Friday Night/Saturday Morning

Snow beginning to settle on the Thursday night. The resulting dusting the following morning.
The weeds are winning here with only a few cm on the ground this time. Mt McAlister trig station backed by some wrung out Cu.
There's nothing better than gum trees in snow.  

Gurnang State Forest, Saturday Afternoon

This part of the world is covered in pine forests. It would be easy to think you were somewhere in North America. Solid cover over the road. Not really 2WD territory - the ute is complaining!
It took me more time than I care to mention to dig my way up this hill. Having conquered it I took a picture!  

© Andrew Miskelly | [Back to Index]
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