Say goodbye to an unusually cold winter – yesterday’s sunshine should carry on for the rest of the week.
Forecasters are heralding the end of chilly temperatures that have plagued the country since May. July was colder than usual but not as extreme as this year’s record-cold May and June.
WeatherWatch.co.nz says a high will spread on to New Zealand for a few days however rain and showers should return by the end of the week.
Climate experts at the National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research say the country is coming out of an exceptionally cold winter. They expect normal rainfall and temperatures – meaning average temperatures of about 13C for Auckland – this month, next month and in October. Niwa’s Georgina Griffiths said national temperatures moved closer to normal in July, with an average temperature about 0.4C below normal.
Westerlies would bring rain to the western South Island and parts of the western North Island this month.
The El Nino weather pattern developing in the Pacific was not expected to affect New Zealand in the next three months but people should “watch this space for summer”, she said.
An El Nino could mean more westerly winds and cooler temperatures in the North Island – and can lead to droughts in the east.
Aucklanders have some reason to feel smug about their weather despite the recent chilly three months. The biggest city was also the warmest and sunniest of the main centres in July, with a quarter more sunshine than normal. It rained a quarter less than normal in Auckland, while Wellington got less rain but only 70 per cent of its normal sunshine.