Winter is coming – again


NIWA forecasters believe that winter will return with a vengeance from tomorrow.

Here are five things you should know about the incoming Antarctic blast...

  1. Snow: Will likely settle in the hills around Dunedin, Christchurch, and Wellington with flakes possible to sea level from Wednesday night into Thursday. Heavier falls are possible in both the Alps and across the central North Island tomorrow through Friday.
  2. Potentially damaging winds: A southerly surge from tomorrow afternoon, affecting the east coast of the South Island and then the Cook Strait, Wellington and Wairarapa regions and the rest of the eastern North Island from tomorrow night. The strongest gusts may exceed 120 km/h.
  3. Waves: An area of high seas, with wave height possibly over 6m, is forecast to affect the Cook Strait by Thursday afternoon.
  4. Temperatures: More like mid-July than September across the whole of New Zealand. Temperatures 6 to 12 C below average on Thursday and Friday.
  5. Impacts: A slick Thursday morning commute, especially in the hills around Dunedin, Christchurch, and Wellington, but a snow "top-up" for many ski fields across New Zealand. Crashing waves and winds along the east and south of both Islands could cause damage.

For more detail, watch the video below:


Principal Scientist - Forecasting and Media