Where Is the Closest Snow to Brisbane?
Every kid who’s ever watched Peppa Pig knows that with winter comes snow — white flufffy flurries that transform landscapes into magical winter wonderlands and beg to be made into snowmen, hurled in a snowball fight or zoomed down in sledges. It’s exciting and awesome … and sadly not likely to happen in Brisbane any time soon. Anyone with kids has probably had to break that news to their little ones, often on an annual basis, and the crushing disappointment is real, people.
Well, this winter, the snow might not come to us, but we’re on a mission to go to the snow! Yay! (But we also don’t want to have to go TOO far, haha!)
So we’ve looked into where snow has fallen closest to Brisbane, and where we’ll be most likely to see snow near here this winter. And the great news is, considering we live in the subtropical Sunshine State, it’s actually closer than you’d think!
Where it has snowed around Brisbane
Snow actually occurs in Queensland at an average of just over one day per year. So, while not being a typical winter feature, it’s certainly not unheard of. Check out this ‘Table of Snowfall Events in South-East Queensland: 1878-2015’, compiled by Nicholas Oughton, for all recorded snow events around us — it’s pretty amazing!
In July, 1984, up to a metre of snow fell in the Granite Belt region, most notably around Stanthorpe, and was the most significant snowfall in Queensland in over 80 years. Snow was also recorded to have settled even closer to Brisbane at Mount Tamborine and also Mount Glorious, while snowflakes were even spotted in Brisbane itself!
Check out this 7 News Flashback video of the amazing falls of ’84 in Stanthorpe –
In 2007, a significant snowfall was recorded in the Granite Belt region, with up to five centimetres reached in certain areas. This was the biggest snowfall since 1984.
In July 2015, a cold front brought icy winds from the Antarctic, causing lower than average temperatures in Queensland and further south. Snow first reached Tenterfield and Mount Mackenzie just south of the Queensland-New South Wales border, before eventually crossing the border into Queensland. The snow was recorded in the Granite Belt and Darling Downs area, with up to eight centimetres in Eukey and Stanthorpe. This was the first snow to hit the Sunshine State since 2013.
While never enough to settle, snow has been observed several times in the past century in Brisbane itself, including in 1927, 1932, 1958 and 1984. Looks like we’re overdue a little flurry by now!
Where to see snow closest to Brisbane
The Granite Belt and Darling Downs regions are where snow is most likely to occur in Queensland. Stanthorpe is the perfect base for seeing the snow in this area, and, at just over two and a half hours drive from Brisbane, it’s even manageable in a day trip! Just be sure to keep an eye on the news for when a snow event is likely to occur, and be ready to jump in the car and head straight there at the first spot of the white stuff, because when it does fall you don’t want to miss it!
Over the border into New South Wales, the Northern Tablelands are one of the best places to head to to see snow. With the highest altitude on the Tablelands, and with an average of five snowfalls per year, the town of Guyra is the most likely spot for snow. Be ready for a long road trip though, because it can take around five hours to get there from Brissie.
For the real deal of guaranteed, thick snow for skiing and winter fun, you can obviously also head further south to the Snowy Mountains, to resorts such as Perisher or Thredbo. Expect a drive of 20+ hours though, if you’re not prepared to fly.
When is it going to snow?
According to snow records, as featured in a chart in ‘Queensland Snow’ by Nicholas Oughton, figures show that the most likely time to see snow in South East Queensland is in July, specifically between the 11th and 30th of July.
As for this year, you can check out this article from the Bureau of Meteorology on when it is likely to snow in 2016. And be sure to keep an eye on Queensland weather on the BoM for updates and current forecasts!