In 2018, Moree had its warmest July since 1927 with a mean maximum of 20.6; this followed July 2017 which was almost as warm as July this year.
This pattern of back-to-back warm Julys previously has happened only twice in the past 135 years, 1907-08 and 1926-27.
In 1908, the monthly rainfall was slightly above average the last five months of that year, while 1927, after a dry August and September, was much wetter than average from October through to March 1928 in our regions.
Moree also had a very dry June and July this year for the second successive year and looking through the rain records dating back to 1879, there were back-to-back very dry June-Julys in 1880-1881 and again 1946-1947.
There was near-normal rain in our regions from August to November 1881, very hot conditions in January of 1882 and then heavy rain in February.
In 1947, from August to December, it was much wetter than average but I doubt the current drought will end like that in our region for the rest of this year.
Over the border into outback Queensland, St. George, after having its warmest spell for late July since 1958, recently had its warmest day for early August since 2008 when the temperature reached 29 degrees.
Heavy rain fell at the end of August 2008 and the last four months of that year were wetter than average in our regions but somewhat drier over most of Victoria.
In the latest Bureau of Meteorology rainfall prognosis map for the next three months, dark blue areas expect well above-average rain while areas shaded by blood red expect well below-average.
There was blood red shading over most our region, particularly NE Victoria and if accurate it will be the driest August to October on record at many places, which I believe won’t happen.
A few months ago a Bureau of Meteorology rainfall prognosis included a blood red shading over the Pilbara region of WA.
I expect the heaviest rains during October ...
But on about June 8 the heaviest June rains since 1951 fell around Onslow.
The Southern Ocean low pressure belt has been very active the past four weeks and has strengthened more recently, allowing much needed rainfalls to reach places as far north as Narrabri on Monday August 6.
This trend looks like it will continue with heavier rains anticipated the fourth week of August and I expect the heaviest rains during October about mid-month and during the fourth week.