The rainfall for 2018 was well below the average when just over 14 inches or 353.4 mm was recorded.
The average rainfall for Grenfell since 1886 is around the 600 mm (24 inches). 2018 was our driest year for some time much to the disappointment for local farmers, however, Weddin Shire was a lot better off than many other areas of the state where they have been expereicing severe drought conditions.
Hand feeding stock has been and still is a regular chore for local farmers.
Many farmers, despite the dry season stripped up to 5 bags from their crops.
There was only a couple of months in 2018 that recorded above average rainfall. January was one of these months when 55.6 mm was measured at the Grenfell Weather Station, May was another month that recorded good soaking rain with a measurement of 57.8 mm while the heavens opened up in November when a total of 71.4 mm was recorded for the month making it our wettest month for 2018.
Other monthly recordings for 2018 were- February 16 mm; March 1 m, a bad start to Autumn; April 13 mm; June 40.5 mm; July 8.6 mm; August 17.4 mm; September 10.6 mm; October 29 mm and December 32.5 mm. The year, 2018 was far from being our driest year. In 1982 233 mm was measured (9 inches and 32 points), then in 1944 9 inches and 96 points was recorded.
DECEMBER HOT AND DRY
Our last month of 2018 was unpleasant with heat wave conditions with a useful fall of rain of 30.6 mm.
The average rainfall for December since 1885 is 54.2 mm and our wettest December since 1885 was in 1947 when 239.1 mm was measured.
Grenfell's driest December was in 1979 when no rain was measured.
The coolest morning till 9 am for December was 8.6 degrees recorded on December 3 and the highest minimum was 26.2 degrees on December 28.
December's minimum average was 16.4 degrees and since 1965 the average is 14.5 degrees.
December's highest minimum since 1965 was 27.6 degrees recorded on December 21 1994. Lowest ever minimum of 4.3 degrees recorded on January 6, 2012.
During December there were a number of days that the maximum temperature went above the 35 degrees.
They were December 28 40.6 degrees; December 25 , 35.8 degrees ; December 26 38.3 degrees; December 27 39.8 degrees; December 28 40.6 degrees; December 29 38.3 degrees; December 30 37.6 degrees and December 31 36.3 degrees.
The average maximum for December was 32.3 degrees and since 1965 29.8 degrees.
Our hottest maximum since 1965 was 41 degrees recorded on January 21, 1972. The lowest maximum was 14.4 degrees on December 26 1968.
NEW YEAR STORMS
The New Year started off very stormy.
On Thursday night, December 3 shortly before midnight a severe storm with lightning and thunder and heavy rain hit the town. A total rainfall of 27 mm was recorded at the Grenfell Weather Station, however some residents measured up to 35 mm.
The lightning was the culprit of a blackout which took the power crew several hours to get the power back on.
The blackout caused fans and cooling systems to shut down making conditions most unpleasant for residents.
Much to the relief for residents, a another stormy change arrived Saturday and although only 2 mm of rain was measured the cool change dropped temperatures dramatically.
The Greenethorpe property of Gambarra measured a total of 342 mm for 2018. The property only recorded 5 mm from the stormy night of January 3.
The Quandialla property, Glen Idol recorded a total of 291 mm for 2018 and Allen Kelly said the property still has adequate stock water, however some properties the water supply is getting low.
Allen went on to mention that a good rain in March would be ideal. Glen Idol measured 4 mm from the Thursday night storm and 10 mm on Saturday afternoon January 5.
Peter Butler at his Caragabal property said he measured a total of 9 inches and 84 points for 2018.
He said that crops in the district average around the 4 to 5 bags.
Rainfall at the property on the Thursday stormy night recorded 6 mm and the same was measured from the Saturday afternoon January 5 storm.
We now have 2019 with us and lets hope there is a lot more moisture around than in 2018. A healthy and happy New Year to all readers of this column.
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