Gungahlin records its coolest start to summer on record.

Weather conditions across Gungahlin during December were considerably cooler and cloudier than normal.  In fact, with a mean temperature of just 16.3°C, it was easily the coldest start to a summer recorded in Gungahlin since the Gungahlin Weather Centre opened back in 1999.

Nights were cool to mild, with an average minimum of 9.6°C; well down on last Decembers average of 11.3°C.  Gungahlin’s longer term December average is 11.6°C.  The warmest night for the month occurred on December 11, when the temperature was a mild 13.4°C, while on December 5, it dropped to a cold 2.7°C, the coldest December morning in Gungahlin since records began.

Days were generally mild to warm and cloudy, with an average maximum of just 23.0°C; down on last years average of 23.9°C and well below Gungahlin’s longer term December average of 26.1°C.  The highest temperature for the month was a warm 29.4°C, recorded on December 24, while on December 6, cloudy skies and cool E/NE winds combined to keep Gungahlin's maximum temperature to a cool 17.8°C.

Winds at the Weather Centre averaged at just 1.5 km/h during December, with the strongest gust for the month 27.4km/h from the NW, recorded on December 26.

Despite widespread storm activity during December, which saw many areas recording in excess of 100mm of rain for the month, Gungahlin received only 36.2mm in December, over 10 days.  This compared to the 119.4mm that fell last December, and is well below Gungahlin’s longer term December average of 56.0mm. Falls in other parts of Canberra were more impressive, with Canberra AP recording 72.2mm for the month, Tuggeranong 140.6mm, Monash 121.0mm and Melba 49.7mm.  The December fall brought Gungahlin’s total rainfall for 2011 to 516.6mm, well below the 699.6mm that fell in 2010.

Gungahlin's January outlook:  After the coldest start to a summer on record in Gungahlin, conditions look set to heat up during January with temperatures returning to more average levels.  Overall, daytime temperatures should average at around 28°C and nights at 13°C.  This compares to Gungahlin’s longer term January average of 14°C to 29°C.  Rainfall prospects for the month ahead look positive, but will largely depend on Gungahlin receiving its share of passing storms.  With this in mind, Gungahlin should receive around 50mm for the month, up on the longer term January average of 39.1mm.

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