It was cold as ice

McIvor Times - - NEWS - By GUS MCCUBBING

HEATH­COTE might not be in the run­ning for any sil­ver­ware in the foot­ball or netball depart­ment, but the town can lay claim to be­ing the cold­est place in the Mace­don Ranges this year.

Mace­don Ranges Weather (MRW) recorded an overnight low of -6.2C in Heath­cote on Au­gust 29 – beat­ing the pre­vi­ous re­gional low in 2018 of -5.1C recorded near Ash­bourne on July 14 – while Castle­maine came in sec­ond at -5.4C and Lance­field clocked -4.9C to fin­ish third.

Eigh­teen au­to­matic weather sta­tions, in­clud­ing the Bureau of Me­te­o­rol­ogy’s sta­tion at Redes­dale, went be­low -4C that morn­ing, with Heath­cote re­port­ing the record low at a pri­vate on­line weather sta­tion on Wright St.

The air tem­per­a­tures were recorded on au­to­matic weather sta­tions at a height of 1.5-2 me­tres and, ac­cord­ing to an MRW spokes­woman, an un­usu­ally cold night was pre­dicted in ad­vance. ‘‘We knew that the at­mos­phere was ripe for ex­treme overnight lows, as a low in the Tas­man was send­ing cold up­per air into Vic­to­ria which would com­bine with a high pres­sure sys­tem and a cloud­less night,’’ she said.

The Bureau of Me­te­o­rol­ogy’s se­nior cli­ma­tol­o­gist, Blair Trewin, said while it was un­usual to have such a cold snap so late in the year there were a cou­ple of rea­sons.

‘‘One is that the ba­sic un­der­ly­ing air mass is pretty cold,’’ he said. ‘‘But also be­cause we had clear skies over Mel­bourne and light winds – that meant it was pretty well set up for overnight cool­ing.’’

Photo: Ash­lea Whicher

A lo­cal shows off the re­sults of a -6.2C overnight low.

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