Top End expecting first monsoon trough this Wet Season

The first monsoon trough off the coast of northern Australia this Wet Season appears to have begun forming, heralding the onset of cooler temperatures and cloudier skies over the Top End.

After a hot spell caused by a strong El Nino, weather forecasters had predicted a delayed start to the monsoon.

However, Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Graeme King said a separate weather influence, the Madden-Julian Iscillation (MJO) moving into Northern Australia was quite strong, cancelling out the impact of the El Nino on the monsoon.

"There are signs that a monsoon trough will form over Northern Australia including the Top End," Mr King said.

He said more rain was expected to begin over the Top End, including Darwin, on the weekend and continue into next week.

Monsoon troughs are associated with cooler temperatures, more cloud and higher rainfall than usual.

Mr King said an earlier-than-expected start to the monsoon meant there was an earlier-than-expected chance of cyclones forming.

Monsoon conditions also tend to mean fewer thunderstorms, with rain falling during the night.

During the build-up storms in the Top End are more likely to have lightning, form over land and hit during the afternoon.

This year Darwin has sweltered in a heatwave, with some towns experiencing record temperatures.

Source: ABC News

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