9000 KM wide belt of high pressure to affect NZ next week

Australia is 4000kms wide from west to east, the high coming in next week is more than twice that width for a time around Tuesday and Wednesday before consolidating into one large high that may eventually cross New Zealand next weekend.

VIDEO: Windier weekend, enormous high affects NZ next week

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The autumn winds surge back in again this weekend after a calmer Friday for many west to south west winds for Saturday and then a stronger south to south west change moves northwards.

Blustery conditions will spread to many areas with the bulk of the rain falling on the West Coast with showers spreading elsewhere.

NZ: Upcoming Rain and Snow accumulation maps

We have a strong south west flow over New Zealand at the moment and while it will ease back on Friday it surges back in again over the weekend.

The set up means plenty of rain falling in southern and south western regions along with gale force winds in exposed places. 

VIDEO: Blustery winds, snow, rain but also sun and calm - your forecast to Tuesday

Autumn’s windy weather has certainly set in today across the country with the South Island experiencing gales, heavy and snow on the ranges.

Things improve a little on Friday but on Saturday westerlies pick up nationwide and become blustery for some, ahead of a colder change on Sunday that spreads nationwide.

Stormy weather to surge past NZ bringing gales and a wintry temperature drop (+4 Maps)

Hold on to your hats - we have Autumn gales and Winter temperatures in the forecast for some parts of New Zealand over the next several days. The windy weather will spread over a large portion of NZ but most exposed will be those in the south and in the usual exposed coastal areas elsewhere. The wind flow is mostly from the South West.

VIDEO: Surge of gales and wintry weather coming for southern NZ, milder in the north

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Autumn is finally coming to life with a couple of south west blasts across New Zealand between now and Sunday while next week kicks off with more calm and dry high pressure.

Animation: The two extreme sides of calm highs

Most of us know the centre of high pressure is often calm and settled but the outer edges can be stormy and today that is highlighted well with a tropical cyclone on the northern fringes and an active Autumn cold front on the southern edge of high pressure.

Rain and Snow Maps (x4) for New Zealand covering the next 24, 48 and 72 hours

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A wet westerly flow is moving in to New Zealand bringing a mixture of heavy rain, light showers and snow showers.

The bulk of the rain will be on the West Coast but there will be spillover into Southland and a few other regions, but many others will have showers - and many in the east and north east will be fairly dry.

NZ next few days: Windier weather and dangerous seas surging in from the south (+8 Maps)

Autumn is waking up and the next few days ahead see a surge in windier weather with gales in the usual exposed and marine areas and dangerous waves.

The stronger winds will whip up big seas in the south with wave heights exceeding 8 metres.

VIDEO: Detailed update on Cyclone Ann for Queensland, plus NZ’s forecast to Sunday

Cyclone Ann is going to make landfall in northern Queensland on Wednesday as a Category 1 tropical cyclone, or very near that strength. It means Ann is more of a sea and rain event than a wind event - although winds may be strong enough to cause some lower end damage to trees and buildings.