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Darwin's hottest day of the year?

Anthony Sharwood, Tuesday April 16, 2024 - 11:29 AEST

Darwin could be heading for its hottest day of 2024 to date this Tuesday, with a top of 35°C on the cards and the potential to edge up towards 36°C.

While we tend to think of Darwin having almost uniform maximum temperatures of 32°C or thereabouts, that's not quite true.

Darwin's temperature fluctuations may not be as pronounced as the southern capitals, but our northernmost city still experiences swings of several degrees in its maximum and minimum temperatures on both a seasonal and daily basis.

In seasonal terms:

Darwin's coldest two months are June and July, with max temps of 30.8°C and 30.7°C respectively.

Darwin’s three warmest months for average maximum temps are October (33.3°C), November (33.4°C), and April (32.8°C).

So Darwin's three warmest months (in terms of max temps) fall between the wet and dry seasons, when warmer days are made more likely by a combination of clear skies and slightly more daylight than the winter months.

In daily terms:

Like any location, Darwin can and does experience daily temperatures spikes and troughs depending on cloud, sunlight, wind direction, humidity, and local factors.

Indeed, Darwin’s hottest day of 2024 to date was January 2 with 35.6°C, at the end of a relatively dry two-week spell by wet season standards.

Temperatures of 35°C or slightly higher are expected on three days this week in Darwin under persistent southeasterly – a wind direction that tends to push warm, dry air from the interior of the continent towards the Top End.

If you take a look at Tuesday's synoptic chart (above), you can see how air circulating around the belt of high pressure centred over southern Australia is funneling towards the Top End, passing through the warm interior of the continent.

As mentioned, that pattern generally means an upwards nudge of a couple of degrees on for Darwin's daily maximums.

Meanwhile for those interested in what this year's wet season was like in Darwin, the chart below shows that the heart of the wet season was slightly wetter than usual while the shoulder period saw less rainfall than the long-term average.

- Weatherzone

© Weatherzone 2024

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