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Wintry Change: Here it comes!

Updated 9:23pm — Winter has arrived in the lower South Island with feels like temperatures in Invercargill dropping to minus two and snow falling to low levels in Dunedin Sunday night.

Isolated snow flurries are making it to sea level.

As of 9:15pm the cold southerly had arrived in Ashburton and was likely to reach Christchurch before midnight.

Winds haven’t been as extreme today as forecast for most places but snow has been bang on with snow mostly falling to 100-200 metres and some flurries falling to sea level around parts of Southland and Otago.

Winds are gusting over 100km/h in Wellington and may surge higher tonight.

Showers are also returning to Auckland, although long dry spells remain.

Earlier story

The storm – centred in the Southern Ocean – is about to send a second, colder, burst of air northwards following yesterday’s wintry blast in Southland and Otago.

Wellington was also hit by torrential downpours yesterday, which caused minor flooding – the downpours turned squally as it moved into Palmerston North and Manawatu.

Wairarapa was hit by damaging wind gusts over 130km/h yesterday – and stronger gusts are possible late today or overnight.

Northern New Zealand had a few heavy showers early this morning and a few isolated thunderstorms – now into Sunday afternoon the sun is coming out and winds are lighter.

However windy conditions are set to quickly return to some areas later on Sunday and into Monday as the southerly change heads north.

Snow is expected to low levels tonight in Southland and Otago and to just a couple of hundred metres further north. 

Winds – mostly from the north west, but turning south to south west later – may reach hurricane force (sustained at 120km/h) for a time in some exposed areas late Sunday and overnight Sunday, with gusts to 150km/h. Usually the worst of the winds are in more remote areas. Motorists driving the Rimutaka Ranges should take extreme care later today as winds build.  Snow is also possible on the summit overnight/early Monday morning as the southerly arrives.

The cold change will be felt across all of New Zealand by Monday but conditions should ease by Monday night for most places with frosts then possible in sheltered areas by Tuesday morning.


What are weather conditions like where you are?  Let us know by posting a comment below


Sarah on 25/05/2014 12:24pm

In Garston, Southland we have about 5cms accumulated so far as of 12.30am Mon morning. Still heavily snowing and is steady. -0.3 degrees.

LM on 25/05/2014 9:33am

And when you updated this story, Gore’s ‘feels like’ temp is -4.

Frigid ! on 25/05/2014 5:16am

Horizontal snow blowing though Gore district.

Katherine on 25/05/2014 5:29am

Is it settling? 

Nick on 25/05/2014 4:34am


In Christchurch the temperature has plummeted in the las 30 mins very dark to the South. Rain Radar shows reasonably heavy rain between here and Ashburton

Colin on 25/05/2014 3:51am

Current weather in Invercargill.Strong southwest wind and hail

Andrew on 25/05/2014 3:23am

Lovely still sunny day in Mapua near Nelson.   Not for long I guess.

Andrew Blair on 25/05/2014 1:28am

Overcast and turning bitterly cold in Levin, winds slowly starting to build again.

Rob on 25/05/2014 1:23am

Cold norwester here in Rolleston, normally means a very cold southerly after it.

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