Welcome to "South Australian Snows".

A website for photos, videos, reports and discussion of snowfalls anywhere in South Australia, and on Mount Lofty and surrounds. South Australian Snow now incorporates the original website http://loftysnow.com and its contents.

The site currently contains only some of the total number of South Australian snow reports and photos in newspapers and in other sources. I'm slowly adding to them as time goes by.

There is copyright information for the images, videos and text here.

South Australian Snows was created and is run by yours truly Miles Peachfield (South Australian snow observer on and off since 1951 and recently an amateur SA snow historian), and built with the writings, photos and videos of many enthusiastic people. My thanks to all of you :-)

The contact email address is: miles at sasnows.com - replace " at " with "@"

An important point to note about the contents of this website is that I have not proofed the pages to the level necessary for publishing in scientific journals and books. This is because such high levels of proofing is a very time-consuming activity and I've considered that my limited time is better spent doing more research. I'm the only one who's searched for errors on these pages and if I were preparing the pages as a manuscript for scientific papers or books I would have ensured that at least one other person proofed the work. I can modestly say that I'm quite a good proof-reader but many of us will know that some errors are almost impossible to spot by the author! This website has also grown wayyy beyond my original expectations. So I do appeal to readers who may wish to use any of the material on this website for publishing requiring a high level of proofing, is to proof the material to your own satisfaction using the sources I have given. Or if you don't need such a high level of proofing you can say "Miles Peachfield on his website http://sasnows.com says "...".

My tags on Trove: As of 23rd May 2017 I've tagged 595 of the newspaper articles I've referred to on this website with the single tag "snow reports South Australia" (without the inverted commas). Most of the newspaper articles with snow references I've given links to on sasnows have been so tagged. To read more about this and how you can do searches for all of these tagged articles, go to this section below.

One other important point I need to mention here on the home page, concerns the reliability of snow reports. In South Australia we live very much on the borderline between temperatures cold enough for pure snow unaffected by any partial or full melting episodes on the way down, and temperatures not quite cold enough for pure snow to reach ground level. We also live in a state where the majority of people have little or no experience of the various forms of flakes and pellets of ice ranging from snowflakes to soft hail and including sleet and graupel. It won't surprise any of us then that some reports of snow falling or on the ground are inevitably of sleet or other non-crystalline ice particles, or at least a mix, a mixed salad I call it.

On this website I've said what others have reported, and only discussed the issue of whether it was pure snow that actually may have fallen in a few cases. I simply keep in mind that not all reports of snow over the about 180 years of our written history will have been of pure or substantially pure snow. I also don't dismiss the more unlikely reports of snow falling, because snow can in rare situations fall to the ground when the temperature is up to several degrees above zero in the lowest layer of the atmosphere, if the humidity is extremely low. There can also be substantial local variations in the temperatures near the ground due to topography and cold-air downdrafts under showers and storms.

I haven't yet encountered even one photograph of a South Australian snowflake showing its crystal structure. I'm not really surprised at this because falling snow is such an infrequent occurence here that those with a camera are fully occupied with getting photos and videos of the falling snow before it stops!

Click on the links below to explore the website. Suggestion: to adjust the font size for a page, use the "Ctrl and +" keys or "Ctrl and -" keys together, to increase or decrease the font size. Getting the pages to display at suitable font sizes has been one of the trickier challenges of building this website, particularly during the transition from desktop-friendly only to desktop-friendly and mobile-friendly (in 2016 I inserted simple mobile-friendly code into most pages and so most pages should display reasonably well on mobile devices).



Above: The caption for this photo taken in July 1951 (most probably 19th) and published in a newspaper article of the time, is "WIND-BORNE snow created an unusual pattern in black and white on tree trunks and branches near the Mt. Lofty summit. The Lord Mayor's car, driven by the Lady Mayoress, Mrs. Rymill, and bearing a snow man mascot, is approaching the camera." The source of the above image is the State Library of South Australia Pictorial Collection B 56020. The newspaper source is "Chronicle (Adelaide, SA : 1895 - 1954) Thursday 26 July 1951 Page 22" (located on Trove).

LATEST NEWS! :

2016 July 12th Tuesday: two or three snow showers Mt Lofty, isolated reports elsewhere in southern and central Lofties, and in Burra district in Mid-North.

On Tuesday morning 12th a very cold aistream from the deep south arrived over southern South Australia, accompanied by winds to gale-force in coastal and southern districts and widespread shower activity in the south. Small hail was widely reported, and showers of/with snow and/or sleet were reported from Mount Lofty, and I saw one or more reports from Stirling, the summit of Mt Barker, Echunga, Tower Hill near Williamstown, Burra, and hill country north and south of Burra. I've written an extensive report on this snow event and posted it here 2016 July 12th Tuesday snow event.

2016 July 4th: a fall of snow reported from Mt Lofty, unexpected and witnessed by few people.

I've posted a report on this event here 2016 July 4th Snowfall on Mt Lofty.

2015 August 11-12th: Mt Bryan summit - overnight snow showers and snow carpet.
Experienced by only one person - South Australian intrepid snowchaser Mark Dawson who spent much of a freezing moonless night on the summit.

See report here

2015 July 11th: Snow falls on Mt Lofty and more widely on some high country of Mid-North.

A snowshower falls on upper Mt Lofty and vicinity, and snow shower(s) fall more widely on some high country of the Mid-North and Flinders Ranges. Highlights include: a party on a prearranged walk hikes to the summit of Mt Bryan near Hallett in falling snow; several snowchasers observe and film falling snow on roads around the Mt Bryan Range; snow carpets the ground on the upper slopes and summits of higher parts of the Mt Bryan Range and some other high country in the Mid-North and Flinders Ranges, and around the summit of Mt Lofty (mixed with hail); and for ten minutes on Saturday morning a party atmosphere prevails on Mt Lofty summit as snow and other icy flakes fall. I've posted a report on this event here.

2014 August 1st Friday: A few snow-showers on Mt Lofty and vicinity and a brief snow-shower and some snowflakes seen around Mt Bryan.

Another cold pool, and a teaser for snowchasers, the public and the media. There is a report on the event here.

2014 July 9th: Amazing Deja Vu Snowfall on Mt Bryan Summit !! and light snowfall at Hallett.



Above: Photo by Mark Dawson, showing snow cover on the leeward side of the summit of Mt Bryan during a snowfall on 9th July 2014.

Photographer and snowchaser Mark Dawson from Clare, after keeping a careful watch on the weather charts and model predictions for several days, climbed Mt Bryan in the Mid-North on the morning of 9th July 2014 and experienced a period of near-blizzard conditions as gale-force winds whipped falling snow horizontally across the summit!!

Read Mark's full report with photos and videos on his blogging site "Mark Dawson Photography" here Deep Low cold pool with snow 9 July 2014. Use your back button to return here. My thanks to Mark for permission to post the above photo here.

I've posted a general report on this snow event including some meteorological information on the weather system responsible, and reports of a light fall of snow in Hallett on the same day, here 9th July 2014: amazing deja vu snowfall on the summit of Mt Bryan!!

This was only 9 days after the "End-to-End Minus 1 group" of hikers had an encounter with snow on the summit of Mt Bryan on Saturday 28th June.

2014 June 28th Saturday: Snow on the Slopes and Summit Of Mt Bryan in The Mid-North.



Above: Robert Alcock, President of the 'Friends of the Heysen Trail' sitting in the stone chair, and fellow members of the 'End-to-End Minus 1' group on the summit of Mt Bryan on Saturday 28th June 2014. They arrived on the summit on a scheduled hike along the Heysen Trail to discover it was snowing and the summit was snow-covered! My thanks to Robert for permission to post this photo.  See 2014 June 28th: Snow on the slopes and summit of Mt Bryan in the Mid-North. for more photos and details.

Possible snowfall on May 2nd 2014 but no reports found.
A very cold pool of air coming up quickly from far to the south-west moved over South Australia on or about May 2nd 2014, bringing some rain and hail showers and some near-record low early May maxima. I found this comment on the Facebook page South Australian Weather by Tam Schwerdt "Hail in Port Pirie and word is out they had snow in Wirrabra near Laura." "May 2 at 5:55pm". I wasn't able to find any eyewitness reports of snow falling anywhere. I'm inclined to the view from reading the discussion on the Weatherzone thread SA - Deep Cold Pool with Front - Showers, Hail and Thunderstorms May 1 - 3 and from my own considerations, that the atmosphere was a little too warm for snow except possibly in very isolated circumstances on the highest peaks of the Mid-North and the Flinders Ranges. I'm encouraged to think it may have snowed on the summit of Mt Bryan, given the more recent experiences of Mark Dawson and the 'End-to-End Minus 1' group of Heysen Trail hikers. We'll likely never know for sure.

2013 July 20th Saturday: local light snowfalls Mt Bryan - Burra district and Mt Lofty district.

Light snow covered the upper slopes of some hills and Mt Bryan in the Mid-North. A mix of hail and graupel with some sleet and a little dash of snowflakes covered the upper slopes of Mt. Lofty. Click on Snowfalls 20th July 2013 for more on this event.

Now to a full list of pages on this website with links to each page. All pages are authored by Miles Peachfield unless otherwise stated.

Snow events from 2013 to 2016 inclusive.

"2016 July 12th Tuesday: two or three snow showers Mt Lofty, isolated reports elsewhere in southern Lofties, and in Burra district in Mid-North."

"2016 July 4th: a fall of snow reported from Mt Lofty, unexpected and witnessed by few people."

Mark Dawson ... "2015 August 11-12th: Mt Bryan summit - overnight snow showers and snow carpet."

"2015 July 11th: Snow falls on Mt Lofty and more widely on some high country of Mid-North."

"2014 August 1st Friday: a few snow-showers on Mt Lofty and vicinity and a brief snow-shower and some snowflakes seen around Mt Bryan."

"2014 July 9th: Amazing Deja Vu Snowfall on Mt Bryan Summit !! and light snowfall at Hallett."

"2014 June 28th: Snow on the slopes and summit of Mt Bryan in the Mid-North."

"2014 May 2nd: Possible snowfall but no reports found."

"2013 July 20th Saturday: local light snowfalls Mt Bryan - Burra district and Mt Lofty district."

All snow events from 2000 to 2012 inclusive I could find records of.

"2000 to 2004 inclusive - SA snowfalls."

"SNOW!!:10th August 2003 Snow in a northerly?!?!?!"

"2005 one event on June 21st: snowflakes on Mt Lofty and at Crafers."

"2006 and 2007: the search for snow reports - none found."

2008 August 10th: local snow showers southern Mt Lofty Ranges.

"A snow shower on the summit of Mount Lofty on 10th August 2008."

Phil Bagust..."A snow shower on the Mount Lofty summit on 10th August 2008"

"2008 August 21st: snow showers on Mt. Lofty and snow also reported from Uraidla and Stirling and ?? "over the Flinders."

"2009, 2010 and 2011. Three years in a row without any snow?"

Mark Creed..."Barossa Hailstorms 12th July 2012 Photographer Mark Creed."

Briony Kalleske..."Barossa Hailstorms 12th July 2012 Photographer Briony Kalleske."

"Snow showers Mt Lofty, Hallett, elsewhere in SA 11th October 2012"

All snow events from 1990 to 1999 inclusive I could find records of.

"1990 to 1999 inclusive - SA snowfalls."

Tim Eckert, Kym Burton, Ian Holton..."1996 18th August - nine snow-carpeted landscape photos."

All snow events 1986 to 1989 inc. I found by searching the newstext.com.au database.

Newstext was the only reference source I searched for the period 1986-89 inclusive. As far as I know there is no other digital or imaged database of SA newspapers for that four-year period on the internet. The Newstext resource is now no longer available. We can but hope that the Newstext archive reappears on the internet in some form, or is even donated to Trove.

The Advertiser was the only major South Australian newspaper in their database for the entire period. Their weather reports with weather maps (which I think would have been published daily in The Advertiser except on Sundays when a similar report would have been published in the Sunday Mail) were not included in the Newstext database so that is another source of searchable information. Another source would be regional newspapers. And any well-sourced record of snow falling in SA that came to the attention of the Bureau of Meteorology would I imagine be in their unpublished records.

So it's pretty unlikely that the snow events listed below, that I found on Newstext, provide us with a full list of snow events for 1986 to 1989 inclusive.

"1986 snow reports found in Newstext database."

" 1987 snow reports found in Newstext database."

"1988 snow reports found in Newstext database."

"1989 snow reports found in Newstext database."

1837 to 1869 inclusive - the early years of newspaper reporting of snowfalls in SA. All snow events from 1837 to 1869 inclusive I could find records of in the Trove database of SA Newspapers.

"1837 to 1859 inclusive - the early years of newspaper reporting of snowfalls in SA."

"1860 to 1865 inclusive - continuing the early years of newspaper reporting of snowfalls in SA."

"1866 to 1869 inclusive - continuing the early years of newspaper reporting of snowfalls in SA."

1870 to 1899: miscellaneous snow events from 1870 to 1899 inclusive (the only events I've written up in this period to date).

"James Butler aged 18 perishes outdoors in South Australian snowfall near Jamestown in 1879."

"1879: widespread snowfall during overnight darkness Wednesday 23rd into Thursday 24th July 1879."

"1880 July 16th-17th: substantial snowfall Mid-North and Flinders Ranges, no reports found of snow in southern Lofties."

"1893 1st April: snow reported from Hallett, Yongala, Petersburg; earliest fall I know about."

"Friday 13th July 1888: heavy snowfall reported at Burra, Mt Bryan (town) and Hallett." I've not searched for snow reports more widely yet.

"1895: Widespread snowfall night of Friday 19th into morning of Saturday 20th July."

"Snowfall in the Mid-North on July 10th-11th 1896"

"October 1899 snow reports."

"Snowfall dates Mt Lofty 1868 to 1888 and 1901 to 1906 inclusive."

"Snowfalls In Our State": an article by Mr. H.A. Lindsay published August 1935.

1900 to 1911 inclusive - all snow events from 1900 to 1911 inclusive I could find records of in the Trove database of SA Newspapers.

"1900 July 3rd: rare meteorology - reports of snow Flinders Ranges before NSW historic July 5th snow-flood."

"1900: August 16th Widespread Snow Showers."

"1900: snowfalls other than July 3rd and August 16th."

"1901 June Snowfalls"

"1901 EPIC SNOWFALL 27-28th July."

"1901 August Snowfalls."

"1901 October Snowfalls"

"1902: only two minor occurrences found."

"1903 snowfalls."

"1904 June 30th snowfall."

"1904 July 14th snowfall."

"1904 August 30th snowfall."

"1905: August 29th blockbuster snow event and other 1905 falls."

"1906: widespread snow showers Monday 27th August and on Mt Lofty August 28th. and other 1906 falls."

"1907: One event - July 8th-9th isolated reports snow Mid-North wind from northerly quarter!!."

"1908 - a very good year for snow in South Australia."

"1909 Snowfalls."

"1910 - Extensive snowfalls Sunday-Monday October 9-10th."

"1910 - Other Snowfalls."

"1911 Snowfalls."

Miscellaneous snow events from other years.

"1913 November 4th Tuesday: A light fall of snow reported."

1916 Two November Snowfalls."

"1917 August 21st: One of our top twenty snow events?"

"1919 6th-7th September widespread snowfalls."

"1954 snowfalls reported in The Advertiser newspaper."

"1953 snowfalls reported in The Advertiser."

"1952 snowfalls reported in The Advertiser newspaper."

"1951 blockbuster snow event July 19th - 20th"

"1951 Thursday 9th August: light snow reported from scattered locations in the South-East."

"1950 snowfalls reported in The Advertiser."

"1949 Sunday 17th and Monday 18th July: widespread snowfall in Mid-North and Flinders Ranges and southern Mt Lofty Ranges."

"1949 October 30th: a light snowfall reported on Mt Lofty summit."

"1949 November 3rd: snow on Mt Lofty and reported at Clare."

"1948 August 23rd widespread snowfall in Mid-North."

"1948 August 23rd Peterborough snowfall and table of Peterborough snowfalls 1888-1948."

"1947 snowfalls reported in The Advertiser."

"1946 snowfalls reported in The Advertiser."

"1946 October 14th Monday: Snow reported at Mount Remarkable, Mt Lofty and Crafers."

"1945 snow reports in The Advertiser."

"1944 snow reports in The Advertiser."

"1943 snow reports in The Advertiser."

1939 August 10th widespread snowfall: "probably the heaviest since August 13. 1932".

"3rd December 1936 yes December- reports of snow falling in the Mid-North!".

"15th August 1934 gales, tidal flooding, one snow report"

"1932 14th August Sunday: may be biggest snowfall of 1930 to 1939 inc. decade."

Chris Handler..."Sleet showers and snowflakes July 14th 2009"

1955 to 1985 inclusive - miscellaneous snow events.

I haven't done any research on snow events in this period so only have isolated records.

Recollection by Dr Phil Bagust..."May 18th 1981 snowfall - rare meteorology!"

Published lists of snowfalls I've found, and miscellaneous snowtrails.

"Mt Lofty area - times it's snowed."

"Snowfall dates Mt Lofty 1868 to 1888 and 1901 to 1906 inclusive."

"SNOWFALLS In Our State": an article by Mr. H.A. Lindsay published August 1935.

"Burra History Group list of snowfalls for Burra 1901-1929 inc."

"The Times and Northern Advertiser" list of Peterborough snowfalls from 1888 to 1948" (scroll down).

"Snow Trails."

Snowfalls with very ususual meteorology.

Miles Peachfield ... "Snowfalls with very ususual meteorology."

Some Early and Late Season Snowfall Reports.

"Early season snowfall reports".

"Late season snowfall reports".

Some Historical Snow Photos.

"Some historical snow photos taken in South Australia"

Miscellaneous items.

"Miscellaneous items."

Now to a section on Mt Bryan, Razorback Ridge and the Mt Bryan Range in the Mid-North.

Mt Bryan is the highest mountain in the Mt Lofty Ranges and may have more snow days than Mt Lofty, yet the mountain itself and the Mt Bryan Range are unknown to most South Australians. If the South Australian winter climate were to cool by perhaps as little as 4 or 5 degrees then the Mt Bryan Range may well become the state's premier annual snow resort!

This section contains commentary and numerous photos taken from and around the Range. It includes the following pages:

"Home page for section "Mt Bryan, Mt Bryan Range and the Razorback Ridge in the Mid-North.".

"Razorback Ridge inc. Razorback Hill and Mt Bryan from east."

"Southern part of Razorback Ridge seen from west side.".

"Mt Bryan ascent from east side on Heysen Trail."

"Mount Bryan from the west side along the Heysen Trail"

"Mt Bryan - views of the summit taken on the summit."

"Views from the summit of Mt Bryan."

Now to miscellaneous items and links.

"Western Australian Snow - valuable info and discussion in report by Graham Barker of Perth."

"Queensland Snow: website - Nicholas Oughton; book - Robert MacMaurice."

"Mt Lofty Summit"

"Falling snow photos and videos: suggestions for getting better results."

My rating system for some South Australian snowfalls (snow events).

Copyright information...there is copyright information for the images, videos and text here

Some useful links...there are links to sources of information about South Australian and Mount Lofty weather, the National Park Centre on the Mount Lofty summit, and about Cleland Conservation Park here http://sasnows.com/LinksUsefulSAS/LinksUsefulSAS.html

Phil Bagust (now Dr Phil Bagust) created the web page "South Australia and Snow - Opposites do attract!" some years ago, but hasn't worked on it for a number of years now. It includes some information about the great 1951 cold outbreak and some historical snow photos. I've made a desktop-friendly and mobile-friendly version here http://sasnows.com/PhilWebsite/PhilWebsiteMobf.html with a few layout changes to Phil's original to adjust for the modern desktops and mobiles.

My tags on Trove.

I've tagged most of the newspaper articles on Trove that I've given a link to on sasnows.com. If I've included snow-relevant text from a newspaper article and given a link on sasnows.com to the newspaper article on Trove, then it should have the tag "snow reports South Australia" (without the inverted commas). I say should because almost inevitably a few will have escaped the net. In mid-March 2017 I followed up all the relevant links I could find on sasnows taking many hours to see if I'd tagged them on Trove, and I may do another full-scale check in the future. As of 23rd May 2017 I'd tagged 595 newspaper articles.

To find all these tagged articles, go to the home page of Trove (it will open in a new tab or window), click on the link "Digitised newspapers and more", and in the new page that displays (the home page of their section Digitised newspapers and more) type or copy and paste the following into the "key words" search window near the top of the page:
publictag:"snow reports South Australia"
(with the inverted commas).
Click on the search button to initiate the search and all the 595 or more results will be fetched, 20 to a page. When the first page of the search results displays, there's a little "sort by" window with three options: Relevance, Date (latest first), Date (earliest first). Choose earliest or latest first and the search returns will be ordered by date.

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