“A colder and much wetter than average winter in Geelong,” was Lindsay Smail’s expected summary of recent weather. It surprised no-one in the region, except perhaps the Bureau of Meteorology which had predicted warmer and drier conditions once again.
Yet another month of above average rainfall for most of the Geelong-Otways Region, except for some areas to the northwest. August was the fifth such month in succession for Geelong, making 6 such months out of 8 for the year so far. Breakwater AWS recorded 78.8 mm. Urban Geelong averaged 70 mm (average 49.1 mm), and winter as a whole was around 170% of normal – 240 mm compared to the average 141 mm. Such a result continues to reflect very poorly on the Bureau’s ability to predict seasonal rainfall, and farmers and Barwon Water managers would do best to ignore their model projections which are obviously not doing the job.
Rainfall was received on 19 days (average for August: 17), and Beech Forest (249 mm) had the honour of being the wettest place in Victoria in August.
Seasonally, this was Geelong’s sixth wettest winter since records began in 1871, and it was our wettest since 1952, the year of great floods.
Water storage catchments are the highest – 95.5% – since December, 2001, and West Barwon Dam has been on 100% of capacity for the whole of August.
As most locals would have felt, Geelong was approximately 0.3 degrees cooler in August and 0.2 degrees cooler over winter, when the weather station site change is taken into account. Average daily minimum was 6.6 degrees and average maximum was 14.9 degrees. On the warmest day, the 28th, the temperature reached 19.8 degrees. The coldest day was the 17th when the maximum only reached 11.4 degrees. The overnight lowest was 1.2 degrees on the 13th.
There were 4 days of very strong wind gusts, with the highest being 78 kph on the 5th. There was 1 thunder day – the 8th – but no storms, and 3 frosts.