‘An early taste of winter’: NSW gets sprinkling of snow, wild surf to continue

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Storm force winds along the coast and frosty conditions inland are expected to continue into Monday, after a cold front sent temperatures plummeting in Sydney and snow fell in the south of the state.

The Bureau of Meteorology and emergency services are warning people along the NSW coast to stay out of the water and avoid walking near surf-exposed areas on Monday, as the low-pressure system responsible for the cold snap moves across the Tasman Sea. It has also issued a storm force wind warning for most of the NSW coastline including Sydney, and a strong wind warning for Sydney Harbour and nearby enclosed waters.

“Not only is it going to be incredibly windy, but those waves have a lot of power, so they can easily knock you into the surf,” a bureau spokesperson said.

Swells around Sydney remained between one and three metres on Sunday, with strong offshore winds. That is expected to increase to four to seven metres southerly swells on Monday, as winds reach up to 50 knots offshore in the late morning and early afternoon.

Residents and travellers passing through southern NSW were treated to a sprinkling of snow on Sunday, while a brief hailstorm in Canberra coated the national capital in white. Snow is likely to continue falling to 900 metres above sea level, but lower-lying areas will miss out.

“There’ll be a couple of snow showers tomorrow around the Snowy Mountains, but after that, it looks as though it’s going to be dry until maybe next weekend, when we might see the next front move through,” the bureau spokesperson said. “It’s sort of just an early taste of winter.”

Snow on the Federal Highway near Lake George, north-east of Canberra.Credit:

Parts of the Central and Southern Tablelands and Snowy Mountains recorded temperatures near and below freezing overnight. Cooma dropped to 0.4 degrees at 9am on Sunday, while Goulburn recorded a low of 1 degree, and temperatures dropped to 3 degrees below celsius at Marrangaroo near Lithgow.

Sydney reached a high of 17 degrees on Sunday as temperatures dipped to between four and eight degrees below the May average, with windy conditions making it feel even cooler.

Camden experienced the lowest temperatures in the Sydney metropolitan area, dropping to 4.2 degrees, while Richmond recorded a low of 4.3 degrees and Penrith dropped to 6.8 degrees. Temperatures lingered around 12 degrees on Sydney Harbour.

The Bureau is warning cold temperatures, rain and persistent winds will continue across the state into Monday before gradually easing into next weekend, when Sydney is expected to hit a top of 23 degrees on Saturday.

A cold start to May has provided a shock to Sydneysiders after April saw the city break a 100-year-old record for consecutive days that did not drop below 20 degrees.

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