Mud means it's time to make some money

Top soaking rain across grain belt sees plantings, dams rise

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Urana in southern NSW had more than 30mm in initial falls from last week's weather system. It had good rain also in March. Photo: Olivia Calver

Urana in southern NSW had more than 30mm in initial falls from last week's weather system. It had good rain also in March. Photo: Olivia Calver

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Autumn rain delivers huge bonus to Central-West

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Dams are rising, crops are being planted or being planned for later in autumn after widespread rain soaked many areas of central and inland NSW.

Dubbo has recorded nearly 100 millimetres in the past week, Condobolin 71mm, and Cobar 115mm, and most places from the southern to northern borders of NSW received good follow-up rainfall, filling dams and putting farmers in the grain belt back in business.

The saying on most farmers' lips was "you can make money out of mud, but you can't make money out of dust".

The rain started on Thursday with a pool of moisture moving down from the north-west and then later a cold front merged to create a big rain event through the Central West, Central West slopes and tablelands areas, and that was on the top of good falls only last Monday.

Quandialla farmer Malcolm Yerbury, Foxlodge, measured between 45mm and 60mm at his farm east of West Wyalong. That was on top of 92mm in February and 94mm in March.

"This will keep the feed wheat going and we can look at planting some canola and barley a bit later," he said. Many places had recorded more rain in the past three months than for the whole of last year.

Lots of puddles near this oats crop at Molong. Nearby Wellington had over 100mm for the week. Photo: Hannah Powe

Lots of puddles near this oats crop at Molong. Nearby Wellington had over 100mm for the week. Photo: Hannah Powe

There was also good news for major dams, with all storages rising, some from critically low levels. The Castlereagh at Mendooran was at minor flood watch and so was the Bogan at Peak Hill.

The Macquarie River was in full flow from tributaries and its normal feeder, Burrendong Dam, was rising, now sitting at 8 per cent, as of Sunday, April 5.

Other storages were Windamere, 29pc, rising, Wyangala 12pc, rising, Pindari 10pc, rising, Lake Cargelligo 84pc, rising, Burrinjuck 37pc, rising, Blowering 44pc, rising.

Some of the top totals for the past week were:

Hunter: Merriwa 61mm, Scone 41mm, Cessnock 29mm; Northern Tablelands: Armidale 44mm, Guyra 30mm, Glen Innes 66mm, Inverell 35mm; Central Tablelands: Bathurst 64mm, Mudgee 110mm, Orange 96mm, Trunkey Creek 63mm; Southern Tablelands: Crookwell 43mm, Goulburn 45mm, Gunning 59mm.; North West Slopes: Gunnedah 35mm, Tamworth 45mm, Barraba 41mm; North West Plains: Mungindi 46mm, Moree 22mm, Narrabri 44mm, Pilliga 74mm, Walgett 44mm; Central West Slopes; Coonabarabran 82mm, Cowra 66mm, Dunedoo 99mm, Dubbo 95mm, Wellington 103mm, Forbes 77, Parkes 108mm. Central West Plains: Coonamble 68mm, Condobolin 71mm, Peak Hill 88mm, Trangie 88mm, Ungarie 52mm; South West Slopes: Temora 67mm, Grenfell 60mm, Cootamundra 53mm, Wagga Wagga 54mm; Riverina: Booligal 54mm, Griffith 32mm, Hillston 65mm, Lake Cargelligo 46mm, West Wyalong 64mm; Upper Western: Cobar 115mm, Brewarrina 43mm, White Cliffs 49mm, Wilcannia 23mm; Lower Western: Balranald 54mm, Ivanhoe 41mm, Karpa Kora 96mm, Menindee 26mm, Walmer Downs 54mm.

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