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Storm likely to affect NI this weekend

Computer models and forecasters seem to be in agreement today that a rapidly deepening low this weekend will bring stormy weather to the North Island – and in particular the Gisborne region. says for the past few days the models have been picking a low coming from Australia and crossing the Tasman Sea very quickly, arriving in the upper North Island on Saturday bringing heavy rain and strong winds.

By Sunday it should lie just east of Gisborne and will deepen rapidly – pushing in gale force south easterlies and heavy rain.

The low may then linger for a couple of days while it slowly weakens and drifts slowly eastwards over the Pacific Ocean.

Despite the wet and windy weather likely in many northern regions on Saturday, the strengthening south east flow may well create sunny weather for many places in the north and west on Sunday…it just depends how much cloud cover pushes westwards from the low.

But eastern areas will remain in the firing line of strong winds and rain or showers. 

Windiest places are likely to be from Taranaki to Gisborne with the heavy rain pushing in from the west on Saturday and setting in to the east on Sunday.

The storm is unlikely to have much impact on the South Island but may bring some wind and brief rain or showers to northern areas.

Storm Timeline:

  • Friday: Low moves over Tasman Sea
  • Saturday: Heavy rain sets in across northern NZ along with blustery winds – except for the centre of the low which will be calm.
  • Sunday: The low tracks over into the Pacific Ocean, hugging the Gisborne coastline and deepens further
  • Monday: Little change however by the end of the day conditions should be easing for most areas


Tim on 29/02/2012 11:24pm

Hi Phil,

Am studying met at the moment and have been tracking this cold front that passed over nz this morning – could you give me an insight on the jetstream that is currently over the tasman/nz – is this what caused the front to build initially?

And how do you track fronts? Do you look towards the exit areas in jetstreams and see what the low px area is doing from observations? I understand the exit area is where high level divergence is located in the upper levels and this is where low level convergence would cause rising of air and cause depressions/fronts to form?

Correct me if i am wrong but am still learning and trying to understand it better – any comments would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks very much.



Guest on 29/02/2012 10:58pm

Have an outdoor birthday planned for Saturday in Torbay…..
How certain is it that Sunday is going to be clear? – could the low slow down and arrive on sunday?? I will either postpone until sunday or should I go for the next weekend and take my chances there? 🙂

Just asking for an opinion.


sw on 29/02/2012 11:50pm

Sunday will be a lot better,quite sunny though some wind still.

WW Forecast Team on 1/03/2012 5:08am

Agree with SW – it’s looking similar to today actually.


– WW

sw on 29/02/2012 6:18pm

No doubt it be SW in Auckland always is with these systems.

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