Australia Weather News

A storm brews over the Ilparpa Claypans in Alice Springs after a wet few days. - ABC

It has been a wet week across much of the Northern Territory, with many cattle stations receiving their first rain for the season and in some cases the first rain of the year.

In the past week 43.8mm has been measured in the rain gauge at the Alice Springs airport, well above the town's average November rainfall of 28.1mm.

Further afield the rain was welcomed at Delmore Downs in Central Australia, where 93mm of rain fell over the week.

Owner Brad Vickers said the station looked incredible, and other than some small rain in October, it was the first downpour since January.

At Aileron Station north of Alice Springs, Sarah Cook said 82mm fell at the homestead, with about 70mm across the rest of the property.

"It's wonderful, it's 'wow' sort of rain," she said.

"I think January 30 was our last recorded decent rain we had. We've lasted well I guess, but [this rain] is very welcome."

Ms Cook said the team had made some slight changes to the mustering program, given the rain.

"We'll probably pick it up in a couple of weeks when the water dries out, if we don't get any follow-up rain."

But she said the changes were not too disruptive.

"You take the rain and you're happy to change up your program accordingly," she said.

Rain 'arrived at perfect time'

Mt Denison Station, north-west of Alice Springs, had 53mm over the course of the week.

Owner Dianne Martin said the land was looking greener already, and the dams and watering holes were filling up.

"[It's] over five days we've had it which is really good, and it came down really heavy for most of it," she said.

According to Ms Martin the rain fell across a large area, roughly from Yuendumu through to Ti Tree.

She said the rain arrived at the perfect time.

"Most of the cattle have been trucked off for the year so it's good. There's plenty of surface water at the moment. The main road is pretty well a dam for miles."

However, according to Ms Martin, with the rain came lightning.

"Last last Friday night some bushfires started up from lightning, [but] they were all put out with the storm."

Heavy rain puts out fire

In the Top End, the annual wet season storms have started to build in frequency over the past week.

Lonesome Dove Station in the Roper Valley, south-west of Katherine, received one of the largest falls, with 121mm of rain.

The station's Kelly White said the rain was a welcome relief for dams on the property, after having to pump water from a river to fill dry waterholes.

Further to the west, 98mm of rain fell at Birdum Creek on the Sturt Plateau, putting out a large fire burning across several properties.

Sally Sullivan from Birdum Creek said she would have liked the rain to have come a few weeks earlier, but the storm was a good start to the wet season.

"All the cattle are a lot happier. They clear out from lick stations, bores and go looking for waters further out and green grass," Ms Sullivan said.

"It just makes life a bit easier for everybody.

"Sometimes this time of year fires are the last straw, so a timely bit of rain on top of it is a good thing."

Ms Sullivan said a few more storms were needed before native and improved pastures on the property started to grow.

"There are some really tiny grasses around but they will need a bit of follow-up rain, though they have a bit of moisture to kick on for a couple of weeks," she said.

"If it got really hot and didn't rain for a few weeks then [the grass] would probably suffer again.

"Hopefully we will get a storm every week or so until a monsoon comes in late December."

A slow moving storm dropped 70mm on Katherine and 48mm on Mataranka on Thursday night.

ABC