Ethan, 3, frolicked in the snow and sunshine at Dinner Plain. (Supplied: Dinner Plain Alpine Village)
Victoria is being warned to brace for heavy rain and flooding as a low pressure system approaches the state, while much of south-eastern Australia is chilled by a cold snap.
New South Wales and the ACT are also beginning to feel the effects of the complex system, as it brings damaging westerly winds to the NSW ranges and the Illawarra.
While Melbourne did not experience the same weather extremes seen in parts of Tasmania, more rain fell in 24 hours than in the entire month of April.
By midday, parts of the city had received about 20mm, and up to 30mm had fallen in the Dandenong Ranges, with more forecast for later in the day.
A severe weather warning for heavy rain and damaging winds was issued for most of Victoria’s southern regions, along with a gale warning for all coastal waters and the bays.
Warnings are also in place for parts of South Australia, Tasmania and NSW.
Wet and wild
The Bureau of Meteorology’s Rod Dixon warned there could be severe wind gusts in Melbourne this afternoon.
Residents at Omeo in Victoria’s high country reported thick snow. (Supplied: East Gippsland Shire Council)
“Between around 1:00pm and 5:00pm will be the peak in the winds, with southerly winds with gusts up to around 90 to 100 kilometres per hour developing throughout the metropolitan area,” he said.
Wind gusts of 130kph have been recorded at Mount William in the Grampians, in the state’s west.
State Emergency Service deputy chief officer David Barker said pockets of flash flooding in Melbourne earlier this morning had cleared.
But with heavier falls and strong winds expected later, he warned motorists to be vigilant.
Temperatures have dipped across the state, including at Omeo, in mountain country in the state’s north-east.
Omeo resident Pat McCoy said she got up to check her rain gauge at 6:00am and it was half-full of snow.
“It’s on all the trees and looks about two or three inches deep on the fences,” Ms McCoy said.
“It’s nice and fluffy snow, it looks pretty, but God help us, the poor stock. It’s the thickest I’ve seen in town for a while.”
Ms McCoy said snow occasionally fell at unexpected times in Omeo.
“My late husband’s grandmother said it snows every month of the year in Omeo. We’ve had snow here in December, so it does come.”
Snow has also been falling at Victoria’s major ski resorts including Mount Hotham, Falls Creek and Mount Buller.
A flood watch has been issued for Gippsland and the Upper Yarra catchment in the Yarra Ranges, east of Melbourne.
Cold snap across south-eastern Australia
Snow has also been falling in areas west of Sydney and just west of Canberra.
A gusty southerly wind change is expected to move into southern NSW this evening.
In alpine areas above 1,700m, blizzard conditions are possible.
Queensland is bracing for the possibility of frost on Saturday morning after the state’s east was shrouded in fog early on Friday morning.
The multi-centred low pressure complex just east of Tasmania is expected to intensify as it moves just east of Bass Strait.
The low will then gradually move eastwards across the Tasman Sea later on Saturday and during Sunday.