Travelling Australia - Journal 2014
13-16 February 2014

Hay Visit
We spent four nights in Hay, the time was spent in the town itself, looking around at some of the features although much activity was determined mainly by the weather.

We arrived on a warm to hot day but one which was heavily overcast with rain forecast, eventually. Late afternoon and overnight were warm with scattered light rainfall.

Next day began the same. During the morning there were some very light showers but with very few drops hitting the ground. The rain grew heavier in the afternoon and there was nearly continuous, light to medium intensity rain. By sunset our rain gauge recorded 6 millimetres of rain.

Solid rain set in early in the evening and continued all night with occasional breaks. The sound of rain drumming on the caravan roof was very obvious. By 8 o'clock in the morning our rain gauge recorded 31 millimetres since sunset. A total of 37 millimetres in 24 hours was not enough to completely end the drought but was certainly enough to brighten up the people, the birds and the grass.

Rain falls all year round in Hay, so rain in February is not necessarily that unusual in itself; but average monthly rainfall is about 30 millimetres so we had seen more than an average month's rainfall in 24 hours.

The day after the rain was heavily overcast and, despite a few splatters of small drops, the rain did not return. The soil at Hay is mainly clay which eventually absorbed the rain which initially gathered in extensive shallow pools so during this first day after rain there were puddles everywhere.

The following day, our last in Hay, was cool (low 20s), brighter and there was a bit of sunshine but no rain. Most of the free water had drained away now leaving patches of damp clay which prudent drivers avoided, other drivers left deep tracks as their wheels sank into the soft mud.