Winds from Antarctica will bring in unusual snow, not seen in 14 years, as Southeast Australia prepares to begin November with a near-record cold spell in late spring.
The week will be cold enough for the rare November snow along parts of the Great Dividing Range to central New South Wales, with temperatures that could drop as low as 15 degrees below average.
A weakening of the polar vortex will allow very cold air to escape from Antarctica and head towards Australia this weekend, causing an unusual cold.
The cold polar air will reach Australia’s south coast on Monday morning and sweep to the southeast by Tuesday evening.
Victoria is looking forward to a cold and sometimes wet Melbourne Cup day, with Antarctica exploding just in time, with the freezing wind approaching just 5 degrees Celsius all afternoon.
The winter period will extend at least until Friday with a second burst of cold air following Thursday.
The Alps will see snow all night Monday, and by Tuesday morning they are expected to fall below 1,000 meters over the Victorian mountain ranges and across the Tasmanian Highlands.
Tuesday night is expected to be even colder with snow likely to stretch briefly north of the NSW Central Ranges to Oberon, the highest towns in the Orange and Blue Mountains.
The Alps will continue to see snow until Wednesday and Thursday, bringing the total snowfall to around 50 centimeters.
The weakening of the polar vortex will also lead to thunderstorms and small hailstorms in parts of southeastern Australia.
Widespread showers and thunderstorms in central and eastern Australia will occur from the initial front Sunday through Tuesday, triggering further flooding from southern Queensland to Tasmania.
The oncoming showers could also cause severe flooding in the inland pockets of New South Wales and Victoria, but severity is unlikely to match October levels.