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Extreme Weather: The incoming highlights (or lowlights!) of the polar blast +6 Maps

The Antarctic southerly is going to deliver a list of weather extremes across New Zealand for Wednesday and Thursday.

Here are some of the interesting talking points:

  • Lower South Island: Windchill below freezing for 36 hours in parts of Southland – from midnight last night to noon Thursday. It will feel like -1 to -5 for this entire period.
  • Lower North Island: Windchill around freezing, or below it, for 36 hours in Wairarapa – from midnight last night to noon Thursday.
  • Dunedin has a Daytime Max Temperature of just +5C today.
  • Dunedin will have a Feels Like/Windchill of -6 overnight tonight/Thursday morning
  • Gore has a Daytime Max Temperature of just +3C today!
  • Queenstown’s Daytime Max Temperature is +4C today and the overnight low overnight tonight is -3C
  • Arthur’s Pass is forecast to drop to a bitterly cold -9C on Wednesday night/Thursday morning
  • Tekapo has a high of only +2C on Wednesday and drops to -7C tomorrow night, record-challenging cold.
  • Christchurch has some chance of snow – but totals vary from just a trace or rain/snow mix, to up to 5cm, main risk Wednesday night and Thursday AM.
  • Wellington has a high of +7C on Thursday but a feels like/windchill temperature of +2C at lunchtime with a southerly gusting to gale force. Dust the winter scarf off.
  • Wellington’s hill top suburbs have a chance of snow overnight Wednesday/Thursday morning
  • can’t rule out the chance of some sea level snow flakes in the lower North Island in the early hours of Thursday morning – but won’t be much, if at all.
  • The northern most main centres with snow potential (or a rain snow mix) are: Stratford, Dannevirke, Waiouru and Ohakune. Please note: this doesn’t mean heavy snow for all these main centres, but the chance of snow flakes in the main centre (or at least very nearby).
  • The northern most areas likely to receive snow are: The Kaimai and Coromandel Ranges – only a small amount (1 to 3cm maybe on the peaks)
  • Most likely candidates for sea level snow: Southland, Otago, Canterbury.
  • Sleet may fall in Wellington, Napier and Hastings, possibly Palmerston North.
  • A huge high pressure system (mostly responsible for this cold blast) will cross NZ over Fri-Sat-Sun bringing settled weather, light winds, cold nights but milder days. Dunedin’s high on Sunday is back into the mid-teens.
  • The 7 day “Departure from Normal” rainfall forecast shows a big portion of NZ leans drier than average in almost every region (other than the West Coast, Southland, Wellington and Wairarapa – all of which have normal rainfall for this time of year over the next several days).


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