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North Island: New surge of snow showers moving in

Don’t be fooled by the sun if it’s currently shining at your place – the North Island is in for round two with a second pool of cloud, snow, hail and squalls pushing in from the south and south west says

Sleet has fallen in some parts of West Auckland today with snow clouds clearly visible over the city – an extremely unusual sight for a region so far north.

Head weather analyst Philip Duncan said snow flakes were possible on the tip of Sky Tower – an indication of how low the snow is falling around Auckland, but clearly melting before making landfall.

Heavy snow – the heaviest in decades – has fallen along the Kaimai Ranges with heavy snow clearly seen above 500m and lighter snow estimated to have fallen to around 300m on Mt Te Aroha.

The next burst of energy is likely to be the last main one – it brought blizzards to Christchurch and other parts of Canterbury in the past hour or two and is now moving towards Wellington and southern Wairarapa – and in the west moving over Taranaki and up the west coast towards northern and central parts of the North Island. says sleet to sea level around Wellington is highly likely with snow possible too but unlikely to settle.

Heavy snow continues to fall at Stratford, Taranaki, and forecasters say more is to come in the next hour or two before easing and clearing. 

Heavy isolated hail storms are also expected right up into Auckland and beyond. says further isolated sleet showers are possible in Auckland – something the weather news authority hasn’t predicted since it first started operating in 2006 and something that head weather analyst Philip Duncan says he can’t recall happening before.

The secondary burst could bring snow to the top of the Waitakeres during isolated squally showers, with a higher chance of snow on the Hunua Ranges to the south and the Coromandel ranges to the east. says snow is likely around Taupo and Rotorua too and flakes are possible in the city centres.

Heavy snow showers continued in Dunedin this morning but should start to taper off this afternoon.

Conditions should ease for most places tonight – starting in the deep south then clearing northwards.

Showers and snow to low levels will linger from Wellington to Gisborne until tomorrow morning.

By Wednesday relatively mild weather should return to most of New Zealand.


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Guest on 25/07/2011 2:57am

hi there can we expect more snow in masterton this evening looking like clouds are building

sw on 25/07/2011 2:23am

It doesnt feel cold enough for snow in Auckland at present though it depends if more moisture/cold air arrives as you say tonight.

WW Forecast Team on 25/07/2011 3:03am

Sometimes the temperature can dramatically drop with an incoming CB and surrounding showers.  If the CBs are big enough it can force snow down to lower levels (just in isolated spots).

The timing was out for Auckland today – we have no doubt that if this system had been more west coast and had arrived earlier than it did (say last night) then we would’ve had more snow on the ranges (and sleet in the city).

– WW

RW on 25/07/2011 1:25am

This from a Herald reporter:

” …Forecaster WeatherWatch said temperatures in Christchurch this morning have plummeted to -9 Celsius, in Dunedin it is -6C, Wellington is -5C and in Taupo it is -2C.”

I don’t believe you really said that!

WW Forecast Team on 25/07/2011 1:28am

They were wind chill temperatures – clearly that has been omitted!


Guest on 25/07/2011 1:57am

Can the website please correct this, if possible?
I don’t want to see this in the paper tomorrow!

WW Forecast Team on 25/07/2011 3:01am

Hi guys,

I’ve contacted the editor and news room and asked them to please correct the quote.



Guest on 25/07/2011 6:34am

Channel One news tonight quoted “Wellington had its coldest temperature in history”
I think that is continuing on from NZ Herald misquoting!!!
According to the sites I have been on, Wellington didn’t drop below 0c today, although the wind chill did, which is a different thing..

WW Forecast Team on 25/07/2011 6:50am

I doubt they took that from the Herald, One News tend to do their own thing.  The Herald added that those temps were "feels like" as soon as I contacted them.  Simple mistake on a very busy weather day!

Funny about that qupte though…absolutely no idea where that came from and unsure if it’s true…I can’t imagine it was their coldest in history but possibly.

– Phil

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