The season WeatherWatch.co.nz dubbed as "Sprinter" earlier this week (windy Spring plus winter) returns this weekend.
Saturday looks warm in the North Island for late July with gales moving in and showers.
Sunday is just as windy but winds turn colder SW.
Next week sees plenty more strong westerly quarter winds for NZ.
The winds return as we head into the weekend, blowing strongly from the westerly quarter - along with heavy rain at times to boot.
Things calm down again somewhat on Sunday, though westerlies continue to blow - making life difficult for western parts of both islands.
Increasing cloud and rain, along with strengthening winds are the orders of the day as we head into our weekend - with a northerly airflow developing over the North Island.
Sunny and areas increase along with high cloud, spreading from the north, from Northland in the morning.
After another blustery and windy overnight, a period of relative calm is upon the country, thanks to a large high pressure system over us.
More winds are coming, however, with subtropical air funneling down over New Zealand bringing relatively warm, strong winds and some showers too.
For the rest of your weekend outlook, and a peek into the start of next w
During the pitter-patter of rain on the roofs, many places across NSW experienced their warmest July night in records.
A tropical air-mass has moved over NSW after dousing QLD with unseasonable rain, bringing thick cloud and warm air. Although it's been noticeably warmer during the days, the night-time temperatures were the most outstanding.
A calmer end to the week doesn't last long - as more rain and winds pick up late on Friday, leading into another windy and blustery weekend.
Saturday looks to bring gales in many places once more - blowing very strongly at times - we urge everyone to keep up to date with the latest forecast as the weekend approaches.
It's been a blustery few days across many parts of the country, but a short lived high means Thursday afternoon and Friday morning will be calmer nationwide.
Friday may well be record challenging warmth wise thanks to a big northerly flow across New Zealand.
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Conditions around the country on Thursday look fairly settled - at least compared to what we've seen recently, as a southwesterly airflow over the country eases further during the day.
For the North Island, it's mainly sunny in the west - although Auckland and Northland see some cloud at times, and the risk of a morning shower in the west.
A Te Awamutu family scrambled into a small bathroom to take cover as a tornado roared through their property last night.
Daryl Ritsema is this morning recovering from a terrifying few minutes when a quiet evening at her Laurie St home was violently disrupted by a twister.