Cold snap hits Australia's southeast with city temps to drop as low as -2C

As gale forced winds batter Sydney on Monday, Australia’s southeast is preparing itself for blistering winter conditions, with a cold snap plummeting city temperatures to as low as -2 degrees.

A cold airstream moving over the southeastern states, will bring snow to areas as low as 500 metres in alpine regions from Wednesday.

Canberra can expect to cop the brunt of the cold conditions, expecting a low of -2C on Thursday and Friday as the cold front takes control.

Mt Baw Baw was a picture of winter on Monday. Source: Supplied

Dramatic images on Monday already show heavy snowfall in alpine areas in NSW, Tasmania and Victoria.

Widespread frosts are expected across Victoria, NSW and Tasmania with farmers warned to protect their livestock with the winter conditions over the coming days.

As the inital cold stream dies down, a second will arrive from the southwest on Friday, bringing rain to Australia’s southeastern states.

Sydney hit by strong winds before temperature drop

Sydneysiders have been warned to rug up for what is expected to be some of the coldest weather so far this year, with gale force winds battering the city on Monday.

Temperatures are likely to plummet to below 10 degrees in the greater Sydney area from Wednesday morning, with a chill expected to linger until Friday, Weatherzone senior meteorologist Jacob Cronje told Yahoo News Australia.

A severe weather warning was issued for the state on Monday with a cold front bringing damaging winds, expected to flare up again Tuesday afternoon.

Winds of 90km/h were detected at Sydney Airport on Monday afternoon, with the Bureau of Meteorlogy revealing temperatrues dropped by 6 degrees while winds were in excess of 55km/h across the city.

Temperatures across Australia at 7am on Tuesday. Source: Bureau of Meteorology

Mr Cronje said winds would ease slightly on Wednesday evening, but chilly weather would continue into the weekend bringing the possibility of showers.

He said the city was not likely to experience temperatures above 22, unlike previous weeks of 24 and 27 maximum days.

“There will be a top of 17 or 18 Thursday and Wednesday evening, and Thursday morning will likely be the coldest temperature for the past fortnight,” Mr Cronje said.

A minimum of 8 was expected for Thursday morning in Sydney, making it the coldest day so far this year.

“There could be a bit of wind chill in the evening and the next best chance for rain is probably around Saturday,” Mr Cronje said.

This weekend generally was likely to be “more seasonably appropriate”, according to Mr Cronje.

Canberra to sink to -2C

Temperatures in Canberra were expected to be far colder than it had been so far this month, with the lowest temperature likely to be -2, and possibly colder.

“So far this month the coldest has been -1.6, and it looks like Thursday morning could have temperatures below minus 3, maybe even less,” Mr Cronje said.

Melbourne will be “very windy” with maximum temperatures expected to be only just over 10 degrees, and definitely not more than 13 on Monday.

“There will be more rainfall today and tomorrow, but today the wind is certainly a big concern. Gusts in the greater Melbourne have exceeding 70km/h,” Mr Cronje said.

Greater Melbourne, while it has already been very cold this month, may also experience its coldest day this year, with lows of 7 come Wednesday.

On Monday, the Bureau of Meteorology advised Victorians to wrap up, with hail and thunderstorms expected across the south and east of the state.

Hobart could drop as low as 4 come Wednesday with a maximum of 10, while Thursday will see similar conditions.

While Alice Springs might have a high of 21 from Tuesday, its low will drop to 4 for three days consecutively.

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