Katherine residents are contending with near record heat instead of much needed rain with a month left in the official wet season.
Yesterday's top temperature of 38 degrees was less than a degree shy of the March record.
With March all but done, it doesn't take much of a reminder that the poor wet season has continued with only 54.6mm officially recorded at Tindal for the month.
Only the arrival of ex-tropical cyclone Esther earlier this month saved much of the Territory from an even worse wet.
The March average rain is 167.7mm.
The bureau is forecasting Katherine will reach 39 degrees today and tomorrow.
The March record (at Tindal) was set in 2005.
It has been month after month for heat records in the region.
The Bureau of Meteorology says clear skies across the Territory has led to warmer than average temperatures in most parts over the weekend.
Katherine is not the only location in the Top End experiencing near record heat, the bureau says.
For the next few days southern parts of the NT (south of Elliott) may get rainfall from showers and thunderstorms while Darwin and surrounding rural areas are in a low to severe intensity heatwave.
Earlier this month a major cloud band brought significant rain down south. This time it's only a patchy cloud band so a slight to medium chance of rainfall is possible from showers and thunderstorms. Severe thunderstorms south of Tenant Creek are also possible tomorrow and Wednesday.
Clear skies in the western Top End are causing the current high temperatures, with today set to be the hottest day this week. Towns in inland Top End including Jabiru, Batchelor and Tindal are forecasts to approach their previous March records for maximum temperatures.
From tomorrow, rainfall is forecast across the Top End from showers and isolated thunderstorms. Sea breezes over the coming days will gradually bring more moisture and cloud cover to the Top End. This should reduce temperatures, but increase mugginess.
A tropical low that originally looked like it may form in waters off the NT, has now developed into a fairly weak system in the Coral Sea, south of Papua New Guinea.
Bureau forecasters have a high degree of confidence this low will move east in coming days and not impact the NT.
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