It may seem hard for North Islanders to believe it. Even South Islanders north of Christchurch may not realise it. But the deep south is dry.
According to the National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), Otago and Southland received less than half their normal rainfall for December.
Milford Sound, Puysegur Point, Dunedin, Manapouri, Lumsden, Gore, Invercargill, Balclutha and Tiwai Point all came in with rainfall well below normal.
In fact, Queenstown and Puysegur Point had record low rainfall dating back to the 1870’s.
It looked like their might be some relief on the way this weekend. However, high pressure appears to be ready to nose in. This will keep the atmosphere stable and things rather dry through Monday. The next, best chance for rain looks to be late Tuesday into Thursday morning.
Then the question becomes, will Southland and Otago go right back into the exceptionally dry pattern that was in place in December.
That’s not so easy to answer. It would appear that the pattern we were stuck in during December will continue to a few more weeks. That being the case, it seems logical that the predominantly dry weather would continue. Having said that, the models are trying to paint a very wet picture for the entire South Island, including Southland and Otago, starting a week from Monday and lasting for several days.
As someone else has already said, “I’ll believe it when I see it”.
on 6/01/2012 8:00am
The long range metservice forecasts have been regularly saying rain for weeks and weeks for Invercargill & Rural Southland. makes me wonder about the accuracy and practicality of them! They seem to be far to general. A spot or two of rain and the long range forecast is “Rain” despite the fact that 99% of the day will be dry! Go figure! If you are a observer of weather you soon learn to read these forecasts to get a REAL picture. For instance one example is if the daily maximums are higher than average that means down here its likely to be a Northwesterly pattern and little rainfall is likely.
on 6/01/2012 4:00am
Before xmas, the long range forecast for the deep south was rain. Didn’t happen.