Cold, wintry showers and snow

There are some interesting elements in the forecast today, so here's a little guide to help explain:

  • Wintry showers with small hail and thunder = regular showers (a downpour, followed by a dry break with sunshine, then another downpour, and so on) but the precipitation may contain small pellets of ice and rumbles of thunder. Small hail can look like snow, but its not quite snow.
  • Snow down to 500 metres = snow should settle at all elevations above 500 metres above sea level, but the next few hundred metres below that may see snow or sleet (a form of melting snow). The map, above, from BoM is a great guide...
  • Increased wind chill = the temperature may reach a top of 10 degrees in the city of Melbourne, which is cold enough(!), but when you add the effect of the wind, it can feel much colder. The amount of moisture in the air has an effect on the feels like temperature too:

- It can be 30 degrees in Brisbane in the summer, but feel like 35C. 
- Today in Melbourne, a temperature of 10 degrees, with strong winds, will feel like 1C. 
- It could drop to 6 degrees in the precipitation, so then it would feel like -5C!. 
- Mt Buller was -1C at 3pm yesterday, but with winds of 60km/h it felt like -15C!!

You can track just how cold it feels by looking at the "apparent temperature" in the BoM observations: http://www.bom.gov.au/vic/observations/vicall.shtml. As I'm writing this its +3C in Ballarat, but feels like -3C.
This video from the news last night might help visualise what is going on: