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Cold air starting to move in

A series of cold changes are due over parts of the country, the first of which has already developed about the far south of the South Island. Another surge moves in later on Monday and through Tuesday with this second frontal system reaching further up the country than current of cold air which won’t spread as far north.

Before this cold air arrives it’s worth noting a few weather observations about the country today which have been occurring in the westerly airflow over us.

Westerlies pushed into Invercargill around midday as the first front – mentioned above – moved in. Winds reached an average speed of 52 kph gusting to 85 kph as soon as it hit and these gusting speeds constitute a strong gale classification. This change also bought thunderstorms to the area and hail. The West Coast has had numerous thunderstorms over the past 24 hours and many in Canterbury last night could see the wildfire flashes in the distance to the west.

Dunedin has not been far behind in the strong wind arena as westerlies pushed into the area this afternoon.

Snow with this first front will be more limited to hills about Southland, Fiordland and coastal Dunedin above 400m. Banks Peninsula may see a brief dusting about the tops tomorrow morning. From Monday afternoon a warm sector of air spreads over the country before the second front moves in overnight and through Tuesday.

This second system will likely bring snow to similar levels however this system pushes more moisture into the likes of Canterbury and Marlborough so this should mean some good snow for the ski fields of Canterbury, especially in the north.

This second system moves onto the North Island on Wednesday and will more than likely bring some snow to the higher ranges about Wairarapa and Hawkes Ba.  Also the Central North Island, about higher parts of the Desert Road, could well see snow.  Ski fields should benefit from this system too.

– By weather analyst Aaron Wilinson,


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