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CORRECTION:  The coldest time of the day is shortly after sunrise.  We apologise for the typo.

Cold air from the weekends winter blast is still hanging around creating severe frosts across New Zealand this morning. Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says temperatures have plummeted overnight with frosts as far north as Auckland. “The coldest time of the day is shortly after sunrise the furthest point since heat from the previous day’s sunlight. The 6:30am to 7:30am hour is usually the coldest time of the day and today is no different”.

Coldest Centres this morning:
Hamilton, Queenstown: -4
Taupo: -3
Rotorua, Blenheim, Christchurch: -2
Auckland, Nelson: -1

“Some regions where we don’t have weather stations such as National Park and some inland areas of the South Island will be around -6 this morning”.

But the cold air is on the way out – for a short time anyway – as another storm moves in. “On Thursday cloud and winds will build over the South Island, heading north during Friday and Saturday. Strong nor’westers, gale force at times in eastern areas from Dunedin to Napier, including Wellington, will move in. This will blow much of the weekends cold air out into the Pacific”.

Duncan says the tropical jet stream will dip over Northland bringing relatively mild weather to Auckland northwards.

Heavy rain is also expected along the West Coast with the Radio Network’s independent Weather atch Centre predicting some good rain falls for the hydro catchments.

The warmer spell will be short lived however. “By Saturday night or Sunday we’re expecting snow to return to Queenstown and Central Otago but we are not about to see a repeat of last weekends storm. This will be a rain and wind event not a snow and ice event”.

Duncan says the winds will be more westerly than southerly and temperatures as high as 10 degrees will return to Waiouru and the Central Plateau on Saturday.


Douglas on 9/07/2008 5:40am


“‚ÄúThe coldest time of the day is shortly before sunrise the furthest point since heat from the previous day‚Äôs sunlight.”

– It is disappointing that a Head Weather Analyst could perpetuate a myth such as this. Given the conditions, the coldest time of the day is actually just AFTER sunrise.

“Duncan says the tropical jet stream will dip over Northland bringing relatively mild weather to Auckland northwards.”

-The tropical jet stream travels towards the west, the opposite to what we expect jets to normally do. It exists far into the tropics and will never touch Northland.
What you are actually referring to is the Subtropical jet stream.

It may seem like nitpicking, but it’s important that you don’t continue to make basic errors like these without them being pointed out.


WW Forecast Team on 9/07/2008 8:49pm

Thanks for your feedback – fair points.   We work hard to be accurate and if we’re wrong we’ll accept that and move forward.   I talk in general terms on this website… from time to time things will be simplified because the general public aren’t interested in getting scientific.

The stories I’ve been writing lately regarding cold temperatures have all be in general terms, mentioning that the coldest time of the day is generally between 6:30am and 7:30am.  Overall, across all of NZ, when we report temperatures to the news media, we often have our most extreme temps shortly before/around sunrise. 

About your jet stream comment, again we aren’t a scientific website – and explaining what the jet stream is to the general public is hard enough as it is without breaking it down even further.  

Like I said, we aim to be accurate and never misleading – and your comments about the coldest time of the day are certainly valid. 


Philip Duncan.

Leigh on 8/07/2008 9:39pm

Hey Guys!!

What does “Duncan say” about the weather for the game in Dunedin on Saturday or is he too scared to predict it? hehehe


WW Forecast Team on 9/07/2008 8:55pm

Haha… recently I’ve had 1 fail and 1 success at predicting weather for the All Blacks games!  I didn’t think it would rain for the Ireland game… woops… but I got the wind and cold for the South Africa game.

Hmmm…I’m thinking a few clouds with quite breezy nor’westers.  Temperature around 7…which is pretty mild really. 

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