VIDEO: Big low then another cold blast - heavy rain, snow & gales return for a time

This short week kicks off with sub-tropical winds for the North Island and southerlies for the South Island and this merges mid week over NZ.

Another week, another low, another southerly blast (+9 Maps)

The weekend southerly is already easing across the country but another low, then another southerly are on the way.

Next Week: Storm to cross NZ around Wednesday & Thursday (+4 Maps)

If you thought the winter blast this long weekend was the main feature, think again. A large stormy low will deepen and cross the country next week bringing rain, snow, gales and yes - another windy change.

In a nut shell the rest of today and is dominated by the cold polar change sweeping over New Zealand.

Animated InfoGraphic: The main Antarctic southerly is now moving in (+Satellite Imagery)

Low pressure is swirling around central NZ and as it moves eastwards the main Antarctic southerly being sucked up behind it spreads further north. Temperatures have already dropped nationwide but some North Islanders may be surprised to know the main cold air hasn't come in yet - instead it's still building in the Tasman Sea.

Dramatic satellite animation reveals 'river' of polar air as winter dawns over NZ

June 1st has coincided with a winter blast across New Zealand and the satellite imagery this morning shows a spectacular blast of cloud around the country as the sun rises.

Squally showers with hail pepper many regions with the main southerly energy coming in like a river of cold from Antarctica up into NZ, just to the west of Fiordland and into the eastern Tasman Sea.

Thunderstorms and large hail pummel parts of West Auckland (+Video & Photos)

An intense burst of thunderstorms came off the Tasman Sea around 7pm Friday and pelted West Auckland with larger than normal hail.

Winter arrives in NZ and like clockwork winter weather turns up! (+5 Maps)

Updated 1pm Saturday --- It's the first day of Winter 2019 on the meteorological calendar and Mother Nature knows it, dropping temperatures, bringing hail, thunder, heavy snow and downpours.

Update: Heavy Snowfall maps for New Zealand (x3)

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As the polar change moves across the country rain is falling as snow at higher elevations. While snow is heavy it is higher up and out of most main centres, but centres in Southland, Otago and Canterbury above 300 metres may get a dusting today or tonight.

Wintry change only just starting to move in, peaks this Saturday & Sunday

The big wintry change which has already blasted Tasmania and South Australia is about to pounce on New Zealand.

Latest satellite imagery shows the main cold front moving in from the west tonight and across the entire country over Saturday. The colder change will cross the north eastern corner (Gisborne, East Cape) overnight Saturday/very early Sunday.

Next week: Two more storms bring gales and heavy rain (+2 Maps)

After five months of frequent calm and dry weather NZ's weather pattern has been turned upside down today and will do so again next week - twice.