John Tyman's
Cultures in Context Series
Torembi and the Sepik
A Study of Village Life in New Guinea
Topic No. 2: Climate
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006. Because New Guinea lies close to the Equator, it is hot all year round in the lowlands.  The hottest month at Wewak averages 27 degrees Celsius and the coldest 26 degrees Celsius.
007. Because of its low latitude position, and also because of the mountains and the direction of the prevailing winds, New Guinea is also rather wet. (Kwatit River at Torembi)
008. The winds converge from north and south and cut across the line of the main mountain ranges. The air is cooled as it rises, crossing the highlands, and this brings cloud and heavy rain to slopes facing into the wind.
009. Because Torembi lies on the plains between two mountain ranges, it is not continually wet like Wewak.  It gets a lot of rain between December and April, but it is drier in the middle of the year.
010. During the wet season at Torembi, temperatures during the day will climb to around 31 degrees Celsius in the afternoon, and drop to about 24 degrees at night. In the drier season, when there is less cloud, the difference between the maximum and minimum readings is greater still.
011. In other words, the difference in temperatures here between day and night is much greater than that between the hottest and coldest months.  This is what you expect near the Equator.
012. Humidity is high, of course, especially in the rainy season, and the banks of the stream at Torembi are often hidden by fog at sunrise. 
013. This disappears as the sun gets up and by late morning they usually have a clear blue sky.
014. Clouds build up in the afternoon, however, and there will often be a thunderstorm around four or five o’clock.  It may also rain during the night. (After thunderstorm)

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Copyright Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford University, 2010.
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