Snow clouds are again building around New Zealand’s largest cities as an historic once in a lifetime snow storm continues to blast the country.
For the first time in 72 years snow fell in Auckland’s CBD on Monday. Meanwhile in Palmerston North our reporter John Blackman says snow fell in The Square for the first time in 80 years.
Some parts of Auckland had their coldest day on record yesterday but as WeatherWatch.co.nz reader “RW” pointed out, some parts of the city have been colder “…a max. of only 7.8C was recorded at Albert Park in July 1930, and that site is warmer than the airport or any other current site being quoted. Pre-1930 records (to 1909 only for soundness) would probably reveal an even lower tmax, but the CliFlo data only goes back to 1930 at present”.
Auckland is a large region and often there’s confusion when records are challenged or broken due to so many weather stations across the city.
But snow clouds are this morning building to the west of Auckland with grey and ominous skies replacing the clear blue sky that Aucklanders woke to at sunrise.
WeatherWatch.co.nz says snow is likely on the ranges down to 100 or 200 metres today with passing showers – and again the risk of a few snow flakes to sea level.
Yesterday WeatherWatch.co.nz exclusively predicted snow flakes in the city and snow to low levels on the ranges with other forecasters taking until evening to match that prediction.
Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says it’s been a tough job forecasting for Auckland over the past few days. “This is new territory for us – for most forecast providers really – with snow in the forecast for parts of Auckland. We can’t rely on what happened last time because no forecasters were alive and working then”.
Mr Duncan says he hopes the public have found the forecasts accurate as they continue to work in new forecasting territory for the second day in a row.
In Christchurch things are more predictable – with snow being a far more frequent occurrence. WeatherWatch.co.nz weather analyst made the big call last week that this snow storm could rival the 1992 storm – and for some parts of Canterbury that has happened overnight.
Heavy snow in some parts of the region has caused snow drifts of up to one metre, with many people reporting 20 to 40cms of snow across parts of Canterbury. But the snow has been patchy and other areas have had significantly less.
In Timaru farmers will be relieved that snow turned to rain overnight – but some city folk were left disappointed to see rain this morning. Timaru failed to receive snow in the July snow storm.
Snow clouds are retuning to Christchurch and it’s likely another burst of heavy snow will move in across the day.
And in Wellington snow on the ground is turning to slush in some areas as skies clear and snow showers turn to rain showers. But the snowy blast is going to move back in again later today and across Wednesday – bringing snow showers back to sea level.
WeatherWatch.co.nz says the storm is receiving a new burst of energy which will see it lingering across southern and eastern parts of the North Island and some eastern parts of the South Island, mainly Canterbury northwards, for the rest of the working week.
How much snow has fallen at your place so far? Let us know below!
on 15/08/2011 11:52pm
Snowing here in Fairlie around 7-8cm seems to be easing and turning to a sleety rain now.
on 15/08/2011 11:21pm
Just wondering is there any chance of heavy snow for Christchurch? West Melton had a blizzard but it didn’t reach here we did have some fluffy flakes but nothing since.
on 15/08/2011 11:10pm
on 15/08/2011 11:04pm
It has snowed in the last half hour in the Wekaweka Valley, Waimamaku, Northland and is still around the hills despite sun out. Oldtimers have never seen this event. Some neighbours have snow below their properties and the snowline is about 300 metres asl.
on 15/08/2011 10:28pm
I have just been informed we had snow on Mt.Messenger in the Waima Ranges – that’s at about 600-700 metres. For Northland that is extremely rare given anything under 10C is regarded as freezing – it is currently 5C with rain setting in but was only 2C a half hour ago.
UPDATE: There is a bit of snow ( not sleet ) in with the rain showers but it is not settling. In fact, it is now falling quite heavily but the rain keeps coming in and ruining the party.
on 15/08/2011 10:26pm
Napier is fine and sunny, even put the washing out, we have not had the bad weather as of yet apart from some snow in the hills.
on 15/08/2011 10:24pm
We had 15cm in New brighton yesterday and have just measured it now and we have 20cm…and rising.
on 15/08/2011 10:24pm
another 5-10 cm overnight and it is about to snow again
on 15/08/2011 10:21pm
Unconfirmed reports that it is snowing on the Tutumoe Ranges just north of Dargaville. A friend who lives close to there has said there is a light dusting on the Ranges