Wet, warm, cold, dry – the holidays with a bit of everything
In a year that has brought us a bit of everything weather-wise, we’re happy to report that Aotearoa will be on Mother Nature’s good side this holiday period — mostly.
But before heading off to the bach, beach, or boat, here’s five things you should know about regarding the 2020 Christmas climate, according to NIWA forecaster Ben Noll:
The wet — although the Christmas/New Year period will feature plenty of dry weather, Christmas Eve will be an exception. Areas of rain, gusty winds, and even a few thunderstorms will line the landscape, so keep an eye on the latest forecast if you have travel plans.
The stormy — a couple of days could feature a thunderstorm risk, including Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day in the South Island, and Sunday the 27th in the lower and eastern North Island. Remember, when thunder roars, head indoors.
The cool (ish) — following the front on Christmas Eve, a fresh southwesterly flow will sweep up the country. The wind flow could even go southerly for a time after Christmas, leading to some cooler than average temperatures for a time. Warmer temperatures could return before the New Year.
The dry — although parts of the country will see beneficial rainfall, an area of abnormally dry conditions is developing in the Waikato, Auckland, and Northland. This is expected to continue through the holiday period. The prolonged dryness in this part of the country is atypical of La Niña.
The sea — the warmest sea surface temperatures currently span from Bay of Plenty to Northland, ranging from 19-21ᵒC. Further down the country, it isn’t quite as warm, and with some cooler air moving up the country - we aren’t expecting that to change over the holidays. So if you plan to go for a dip, be prepared for it to be a bit nippy!
So, in summary, keep an eye on the weather this holiday season, but it shouldn’t necessarily ruin your Christmas cheer… be safe and merry!