Australia has an ancient, heavily weathered geology. It’s also one of the driest areas on earth.
The Australian outback has a feel, a smell, and a taste all of its own.
And from within, it is indeed, a land of contrasts.
The Australian sky is famous for its never-ending canopy of blue. Yes it clouds, and yes, it rains. But the Australia outback sky – for most of the year – is a cloudless expanse of blue.
The light is harsh, with high UV and polarisation. This harshness, often combined with the finest of air-borne dust, tend to “soften” colours during the day but allows an unbelievable intensification and richness at sunrise and sunset.
This, combined with the heat of the day and the heavy mineral content of the soil – the most abundant of which is iron ore – gives “take-your-breath-away” colour effects of orange, red, blues, and deep purples. Our local area is rich in various minerals including copper and gold.
To be at ground level in the outback is an experience. But to fly over the outback at sunset is an experience never to be forgotten!
Rainfall, Sun Exposure and Temperatures:
The following Maps [Courtesy of the Bureau of Meteorology] show average data for a wide range of weather attributes. Inland weather can be highly stable, especially in extremes such as drought, with many inland areas not receiving rain for periods of 8 years or more. Once a drought breaks areas can receive year’s worth of rain in just a few days.
One of the most amazing sites is to see how the colour of the sky changes during this rare event! Enough to bring cameras out of hiding. Eight years of eternal blue. Then rain!
The eastern coast of Australia receives the highest rainfall. This is due to a mountainous ridged spine which runs the entire north-south length of the continent and the prevailing east to south-east cooling winds which bring moisture-laden air from the Pacific Ocean.
The main water source for the parched inland is from surface-water run-off from the coastal areas where rivers run inland from the “inner” side of the coastal ridges. These inland areas are below sea level and, when flooded, form huge areas of “inland sea”. These “floods” occur roughly every 20-30 years, and can totally transform the inland from barren desert to a huge ocean of brilliant desert flowers with abundant wildlife.
Click HERE to see what’s happening with the weather in Cobar. [Close the new Browser Window to return to this site.]