Temperatures in Canberra reached 38.5 degrees as the region's first heatwave of the year peaked but the mercury is forecast to fall by the end of the working week.
Tuesday was the capital's hottest day since November 2014, reaching 37.9 degrees, until Wednesday met the temperature and raised it to 38.5.
It was the third day in a row with temperatures over 35 degrees and the fourth over 30.
Forecasters are expecting more heat and a burst of rain but no storm on Thursday, before things cool with temperatures on Friday predicted to reach 23 degrees and drop to eight.
Weather officer at the Bureau of Meteorology, David Barlow, said the heatwave temperatures were 10 degrees above Canberra's January average of 28 degrees.
He said up to about 45mm of rain was expected on Thursday night, with an accompanying flood warning for the Queanbeyan and Molonglo rivers.
The heat drew people to Fujiko Nakaya's fog sculpture at the National Gallery of Australia, including Melbourne's Rosie Hyett, 13, and her mother Caroline.
Mrs Hyett said the fog was fantastically cool on a day like Wednesday, unless you spent too long in there like her daughter Rosie and ended up soaked.
Charnwood's Bradley Schulz won't be the only one relieved to hear of the predicted cool change. This week he sent in an image of the sun setting in his rear view mirror for the Canberra Times' summer photo competition.
"I was in my car stopped off the side of the road in west Belconnen when I saw the sun setting in my side mirror," he wrote when sending in the photograph.
"I love summer but I was glad to see another hot day behind us."
The weekend forecast is more moderate, with a maximum temperature of 24 degrees on Saturday and 27 degrees on Sunday.
To enter this season's competition, send in a maximum of three photos with a summer theme to email@example.com as attached JPEG files at least 150 kilobytes and not more than one megabyte in size. Include your name, address, phone number, photo title, a description of the photo and the date it was taken. Click or touch here for full terms and conditions. The competition ends 12.00am February 29.