Just when Australians thought they were free of Jon Snow on Mondays, winter hit the country with brutal force.
A cold snap arrived in southern NSW and Victoria, bringing with it strong winds, rain, and snow.
NSW’s snow season has started strongly, with 20 centimetres of snow falling at Perisher overnight to Monday.
Thredbo received five centimetres, and snow is expected down to 1000 metres across the central Tablelands on Wednesday.
Snow was also reported in the Blue Mountains on Monday.
In Victoria, Mount Hotham copped a reasonable dumping for this time of year, with 25 centimetres of snow covering the mountain, while Mount Buller got a dusting 12 days ahead of the official start to its season.
Snowfall was also reported off the state’s peaks, with a generous amount of snow captured at Mount Buninyong, near Ballarat, and Gordon, less than an hour’s drive west of Melbourne.
It’s a forecast for what is still to come, according to the Bureau of Meteorology, which has predicted Wednesday will be when the chill really sets in.
The bureau has predicted snow down to 600 metres in NSW and 800 metres in the Central Tablelands; 800 metres in the ACT, 600 metres in Victoria and 400 metres in Tasmania, peaking on Wednesday.
Frosts can be expected until Friday.
Severe weather warnings were also issued for NSW and Victoria on Monday.
Up to 100km/h winds were predicted for parts of the Victorian coast and Strzelecki Ranges on Monday. They will die down overnight before kicking up back up again on Tuesday in coastal and Alpine regions.
Damaging winds of 60 to 70km/h and peak gusts of 90km/h were forecast for NSW, including Illawarra, Blue Mountains, Sydney, the Lower Hunter and the eastern parts of Snowy Mountains on Monday.
Tuesday could see blizzard conditions hit the Alpine Ranges above 1900 metres, with winds up to 125km/h. The state’s parks service has urged travellers to delay any journeys in the area until conditions improve.