Windy weather to hang around for a bit longer

At the weekend

IT WAS a very nice weekend to be out and about on the Southern Downs. The only real problem was the wind. It got a bit gusty at times with Saturday's maximum gust reaching 48kmh at 2.16pm from the north-east. Sunday's maximum gust was 44kmh at 2pm.

Saturday started out with some overcast conditions but these cleared early to a fine day with moderate south-easterly winds tending north-east at times. Temperatures were a comfortable 17-30 degrees but once again no rain fell in our region.

Sunday had clear, sunny skies throughout with moderate to gusty south-easterly winds. The overnight low was 14 degrees followed by a maximum of 30.

Forecast

THE monsoon trough is still very active over the north of the state with ex-tropical cyclone Edna tracking north-east out of our waters. There is a chance a low may spin up in the gulf in the next 12-24 hours but it does not look like it will become cyclonic at this stage.

Our region is stuck between the monsoon in the north and a series of highs between Australia and New Zealand. This is causing a firm ridge to hold along the Queensland coast and to the north of our region. It is also causing a tight pressure gradient and while this pattern holds we will see a continuation of the windy and dry conditions.

Today

TODAY will be partly overcast for most of the day with moderate winds from the south-east. There is a chance of some light showers around and to the east of the ranges during the afternoon. These will be pushed in by the south-easterly airflow. With a very dry upper atmosphere west of the range there is little chance of Warwick seeing any rain. 16-29.

Tomorrow

TUESDAY will see the high pressure ridge move over our region during the early morning hours. This should calm the overnight winds but it will track back east during the afternoon and once again the gusty south-easterly will be back. There may be some patchy cloud in the morning but this should clear to a fine day by lunch time. 15-31.

Wednesday

WEDNESDAY has a new high tracking east from the Bight to position itself in the East Tasman Sea by lunch time. This high will add strength to the firm ridge along the coast. Winds will be moderate to gusty at times from the south, tending south-east at times. There is a chance of a light shower or two in the afternoon as some moisture is pushed in on the upper south-easterly airflow. 16-27.

Thursday

THURSDAY should see winds from the south, tending south-east at times. There is a chance of a shower in the afternoon as moisture continues to be pushed in on the upper south-easterly airflow. There may be some patchy cloud in the evening. 15-27.

Friday

FRIDAY to the weekend is dependent on the monsoon trough and associated lows in the Coral Sea and the Gulf. At this stage we will stay dry due to the continuing firm ridge along the coast. Showers may be pushed in from the coast on Friday but they may not make it to us due to the dry atmosphere once again. Winds will mainly be from the south tending south-east at times and should be moderate for most of the day. 15-27.

The weekend

AT THIS stage both Saturday and Sunday's forecast is dependent on what the lows in the Coral Sea do. Both days may have a chance of a shower in the afternoon.

Terry West, Southern Downs Weather and Storm Chasing



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