Snow falling around 10:20pm Saturday in Upper Hutt suburb of Te Marua. Photo by Sonia Hallmark.
The cold snap is expected to cause further havoc across much of the country today. A blanket of heavy snow has closed roads in the central North Island and South Island. Radio Network head weather analyst Philip Duncan says there will be similar conditions today. He says the Desert Road will probably stay closed, as more snow is forecast.
The cold front which hit Canterbury yesterday will make its way up the east coast of the North Island today.
In the central plateau, State Highway 49 between Ohakune and Waiouru is closed. State Highway 47 at National Park and State Highway 4 between National Park and Raetihi are also impassable. Snow has closed State Highway 41 between Manunui and Kuratau Junction. Black ice is developing on State Highway 30 at Tikitere, near Rotorua.
State Highway 29 through the Kaimais is still closed and while the Tauranga direct route via Pyes Pa is open, it is also icy. Police warn wooden bridges along the route are especially hazardous. Ice means State Highway One between Rangipo and Taihape is closed.
In the South Island, State Highway 94 between Te Anau and Milford and the Crown Road at Crown Terrace are closed by snow. State Highway 8 between Omarama and Tarras, State Highway 7 between the Hanmer turnoff and Springs Junction, and State Highway 63 at Kawatiri are closed.
State Highway 93 between Clinton and Mataura, State Highway 1 between Waitati and Dunedin and State Highway 87 between Outram and Middlemarch are all closed because of snow.