South Island

The Remarkables to celebrate opening this weekend

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The Remarkables ski area in Queenstown is all set to celebrate opening and kick start its 2012 season this Saturday.

Natural snow fall and cold temperatures allowing consistent snow making this past week means The Remarkables will open with on-trail snow depths of up to 20cm – with a very cold snap and expected snow in the short-term forecast.

SI road update

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The New Zealand Herald is reporting the Lewis Pass in the central South Island reopened this afternoon.  It had been closed due to not only heavy snow, but fallen trees as well.

Queenstown’s Coronet Peak ski area to open this weekend

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Queenstown will officially open for winter from this weekend with the 2012 season getting underway at Coronet Peak ski area.

Just In: Flurries in Blenheim

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Snow flurries have made it as far north as Blenheim this evening with Weather Watch reader Joelle Hopcus reporting a few flurries having fallen there within the last 30 minutes. A photo below with flurries on her car roof.

It looks possible with these developments 1 to 2cm of snow could form in Blenheim this evening before clearing tonight.

Bright sparks southwest of Christchurch last Monday

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I didn’t think I would be writing another article about thunderstorms in Canterbury till next spring / summer but lo and behold a few brief storms did fire up late in May. I could see a pool of very cold air was to move over the South Island last Monday but would it be unstable enough? It just managed it.

Two years ago - North Otago swamped

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It's a couple of years to the day since Oamaru and parts of North Otago were cut off from the rest of the Mainland as floodwaters inundated the town.

Serious flooding hit the region and it took some time before the water receded.

Here's an article from the local paper, The Oamaru Mail covering the big event.

Detailed Christchurch forecasts now up and running has launched detailed forecasts for those in Christchurch, matching the high level of quality which has been in place in Auckland for a number of years.

Christchurch hit by strong quake

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Updated 3:14pm -- Christchurch has been hit by its largest earthquake in recent weeks this afternoon, with a 5.2-magnitude shake reported by GeoNet.

The earthquake struck at 2.44pm at a depth of 11 kilometres and was centred 10km east of Christchurch, according to the GeoNet website.

30 minute quakes common in Southern Alps

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Scientists have discovered slow, creeping earthquakes that can last up to half an hour are taking place deep beneath the South Island's Alpine Fault.

The Alpine Fault is considered the most hazardous fault in New Zealand.

4.6 rattles Christchurch

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GeoNet is reporting that a strong quake struck Christchurch just after 5pm Sunday.

According to the reviewed data, the quake was a magnitude of 4.8 and located 8km down and 20km east of Christchurch.

We have gotten numerous reports of people feeling it, saying it felt like it "went for longer than most".