Extraordinary drought photos show what a difference rain makes

Josh Dutton
·News Reporter
·3-min read

A woman living in the NSW Southern Tablelands has shown what a difference six months makes after the region finally copped some decent rain.

Southern parts of NSW were hammered by rain over the weekend.

Nowra, on the South Coast, received 204mm on Saturday, 96mm on Sunday and 69mm on Monday, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.

Much of NSW – including Western, Central and Southern Tablelands – has been affected by drought, but the recent rain reached some of these areas.

Yass, NSW, is pictured after August rainfall.
Yass recently received heavy rain due to a low pressure system which swept the NSW coast line. Source: Lizzie McIntosh

At Bowning, near Yass in the Southern Tablelands, the area received just under 100mm across the weekend and Monday.

In the first 13 days of August - Bowning has almost equalled its rainfall total for June and July and surpassed its May, January and February totals.

Lizzie McIntosh, who looks after Cooma Cottage in Yass for the National Trust (NSW), said the recent weather has been “pretty wild”.

Conditions led to the Yass River flooding – a welcome sight for residents.

“The river from Sunday at about 8am until 5pm went up 3.5 to 4 metres,” she told Yahoo News Australia.

“Through summer there was nothing - the paddocks were bare.

“Since June we got a bit more rain which started greening things up and the recent rain has seen things taken off.”

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Ms McIntosh shared photos on Facebook of the paddock and river on the property in February and after the recent rainfall.

When asked about the transformation of the landscape she said it was “amazing”.

“It’s incredible. I’m wowed by it,” she said.

“It’s unbelievable and a complete transformation.”

On Facebook, people marvelled at the land’s recovery.

“Wow. Fills my heart with joy to see our beautiful country come to life,” one woman wrote.

Another called it a “beautiful sight”.

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Ms McIntosh said she looks after four clydesdales who now have more food to eat.

The rain has also replenished food supplies for about 80 or so sheep on the property too.

Many parts of NSW are far from out of the woods yet when it comes to drought though.

According to BOM’s monthly drought statement, which was released last week, water levels remain low in the northern dam in the Murray-Darling Basin.

However, nearly all of NSW has no rainfall deficiency between April 1 to July 31 this year.

People look on as heavy flooding is seen along the Shoalhaven River in Nowra.
Nowra residents look on at the flooded Shoalhaven River. Source: Getty Images

That’s obviously not including the recent rainfall which swept parts of the state.

Coastal NSW also had above average July rainfall due to low pressure systems.

Soil moisture also remains an issue. It was “above average” for west of the ranges of NSW in July though.

Other parts, including the state’s coast line, were average while areas bordering South Australia were almost entirely “very much below average” or “lowest on record”.