See also Dr Phil Bagust snow 10th August 2008 Mt Lofty for his experience of this snowfall with videos and photos.

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Snow shower Mt Lofty summit 10th August 2008.

Text, photos and videos by Miles Peachfield.

This is an account of my experience of this snow event, written on the day and illustrated with photos and two short videos.

{quote} Thinking there was a fair chance of a snow shower on the summit of Mount Lofty this morning 10th August 2008, I arrived there just as the sun was rising over Piccadilly Valley. It was a beautiful but very cold dawn. I think the temperature was about one degree, or perhaps a little lower, and there were promising clouds coming. Soon there was a shower of soft hail, followed by a wonderful fall of snow which continued for about ten or fifteen minutes, centred around 800am. The snow came in waves and flurries, sometimes simply coming diagonally down in the wind and sometimes swirling and floating among the trees and the buildings.

There was little or no rain or sleet among the snow - it was dry enough to walk around in while I took some video footage and photos and let the snow accumulate on my person. There were only a few other visitors there, and one lucky person working inside who saw an unexpected treat, and some Fairy-wrens. When the snow stopped and the cloud had cleared and the sun came out, there were still patches of snow lying lightly on exposed areas of ground. {end quote from diary}

Above: At around dawn from the summit I could see a long cumulonimbus cloud moving slowly up St Vincent's Gulf. It has a very flat base, and is not a classic tall anvilled "coldie". Perhaps a similar kind of cloud produced the snow shower a bit later. Camera time 710am. A four photo panorama.

Above: Falling snow, 10th August 2008, Mount Lofty summit. Camera time 800 am.

Above: Falling snow, 10th August 2008, Mount Lofty summit. Camera time 800 am.

Above: Falling snow, 10th August 2008, Mount Lofty summit. Camera time 803 am.

Above: It's snowing! At the height of the snow shower intensity - looking into the oncoming snow, the wind blowing the snow into my face and onto the cameral lens (I had thrown my initial caution about getting snow on the camera to the winds at this stage. (This is a still from a video). Camera time 804am.

Above: While I was on the summit, I guestimate about 20 walkers came up the walking track from somewhere far below, maybe the start of the track in subtropical Waterfall Gully. Most stayed only very briefly. Looking at this pic you can see why they might have stayed only briefly. But leaving the summit while it is snowing?? I would have stayed there and watched the snow falling even if I'd come up the walking track in the nuddies :-) Camera time 758am.

Above: After the snow shower. Camera time 821am.

Above: After the snow shower, with the sun shining, looking over a misty Piccadilly Valley from the Mount Lofty summit, 10th August 2008. Camera time 840am.

Above: After the snow shower - the sun shines throgh a gap in the clouds onto the Adelaide city centre down on the plain below. Camera time 928am.

Links to two short videos I filmed during this snow shower on 10th August 2008.

The first video shows snow falling while a lucky walker arrives on the summit from far below. This video is a good illustration of how, the darker the background is the better the falling snow shows up, and conversely you can see parts of the screen where the falling snow cannot be seen at all, most notably against the bright sky and against the reflection of the bright sky on the wet pavement.

Here are links to the first video.

The original mov video file converted to the more widely playable mp4 format and with the annoying sound of the wind in the microphone removed video 1 (7.5mb mp4 file)

video 1 (10mb mov file straight from the camera). It may take a while to load. If you want to play this version and if it doesn't load and play after you click on the link then right-click on the link and save the file to your computer and open it there. I gather that the mov video format is on the way out so your browser may reject this version.

In the second video I was facing directly into the oncoming snow. The rather dark background is good for showing up the falling snowflakes. On the other hand the wind was blowing directly into the microphone so noise is an issue. And the inevitable happened - a large snowflake landed on the lens. So although the effect of snow coming towards the camera is quite good, if this one video is any guide then the negatives of videoing into the wind may outweigh the positives.

The original mov video file converted to the more widely playable mp4 format and with the annoying sound of the wind in the microphone removed video 2 (7.5mb mp4 file no sound)

Here's the link to the 14 megabyte .mov video straight from the camera video 2 (14mb mov file straight from camera )


I've copied this from the general report page on this event.

On the Bureau of Meteorology's website I went to the file: "Monthly Weather Review South Australia August 2008". There I found the following minimum temperatures for "Mt Lofty" were -0.1 on 10th and +0.7 on 11th. BoM says "Minimum temperatures are for the 24 hours to 9 am on the date mentioned." I could not find mention of whether this was the Mt Lofty automatic weather station or another Mt Lofty location, but I think it's probably the aws.

Below are the Bureau of Meteorology's surface MSLP weather charts for 10am and 10pm eastern standard time on 9th August, and 10am on 10th August. We see a high south of Western Australia, and a low near Tasmania that's elongated southwards, and between them is a southerly airflow. Insofar as we can tell from the surface charts, we seem to be looking at a fairly typical setup for bringing a very cold airmass from a long way south in the Southern Ocean onto the southern ranges, just sufficiently cold in this case to produce the reported snowshowers. Source of charts: BoM's Analysis Chart Archive.

Below is the Bureau of Meteorology Adelaide (Buckland Park) Radar Loop - Rain Rate - IDR643 for the period 09/08/2008, 11:40:00 pm to 10/08/2008, 8:40:00 am. For some reason although I loaded later times on 10th onto the website, no radar images later than 840am would load. Source: "The Weather Chaser" website.

See : 128km Radar Loop for Adelaide (Buckland Park), 14:00 09/08/2008 to 04:00 10/08/2008 UTC

End of report.

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