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Wintry weather blasts NZ – but it won’t hang around

It’s a wild and wintry day across the country with temperatures plummeting as cold air from deep over the Southern Ocean blasts across New Zealand bringing snow, gales, hail, thunder and squalls.

The NZ Herald is reporting snow has fallen on the Desert Road in the North Island while snow continues to fall over the South Island ranges.

NewstalkZB’s WeatherWatch is reporting that winds in Auckland are now gale force with gusts to 105km/h in the past hour. readers are reporting thunder, hail and gales right across New Zealand.

Nikki Behan-kitto told’s Facebook page “we had about 10mins of thunder a coupla hours ago its just bloody cold here in gisborne”.

Meanwhile Tracy Middlemiss told us the winds have picked up in Christchurch.  “Wind has gotten very gusty in Christchurch in the last 10 mins or so. Feels like it is picking the house up and dropping it at times”.

And reports are coming in of tree damage as winds peak across Auckland.  Mike Mirfin told “Wife phoned me at work 10 minutes ago, Waiohua Rd Greenlane, branches breaking off large Aussie bluegum tree”.  Mr Mirfin says branches are falling onto a couple of parked cars causing, what he says, is “some major damage to them”.

In Wellington a southerly is roaring through with wind chills more like the middle of winter.  It’s currently just 11 degrees with gusts between 90 and 120km/h according to NewstalkZB’s WeatherWatch.  The wind chill will be closer to zero at times according to

Fullers ferries have had to cancel sailings to Northcote Point today.  “Due to bad weather, all sailings to and from Northcote Point are cancelled until further notice” says their website. says the gales will last the rest of the day but should ease fairly quickly overnight for most places as a large high moves in from the west.  Hail showers, which have been reported across the country, should also ease in the next few hours..

Click here to read our official Easter Weekend weather forecast.

– Homepage image / Another squall moving over Auckland today / Zelda Wynn


What are conditions like where you are?  What severe weather or damage have you witnessed today?   Share your stories below…


richardmcb on 18/04/2011 7:26pm

Drove back to Auckland from a wedding in Palmerston North yesterday. Icey cold rain as we left and quite heavy. About 5 minutes out of Taihape we started to get sleet, a car heading south passed us covered in snow, not looking good for getting through!

Have to admit this is the first time I’ve actually driven in snow, was an interesting experience. Made it up the desert road without to much hassle, couldn’t see a lot but the road itself was ok. We took a few oics aso will try and post a couple of them later in the day.

Guest Steve on 18/04/2011 6:35am

Yee Ha. What a blast this lot was. Weather in the lower Northland area wet and wild with the squalls ripping through.
Only damage seen was the odd tree down. Power held on. Temperature plummet though considering last weeks
warm days. Only 7 mils rain managed to get in the gauge due to horizontal fall.

Guest Peter on 18/04/2011 5:43am

Frequent showers in bursts today between longer dry spells which now predominates since about 4.00pm. Cumuliform clouds now flattened out to stratocumulus with the advent of the narrow ridge in the Tasman Sea ahead of another fast moving front in the Southern Ocean. Temp. remained very cold today from about 4deg C earlier to day rising to 10.7deg C now fallen to 7 deg C. Sun now setting – expect to see ground frosts tonight/morning in sheltered places in Dunedin and more widespread in inland Otago.

Guest on 18/04/2011 5:12am

Invercargill had a cool wind but a mainly sunny day. Definitely better than the forecast again!

sw on 18/04/2011 4:54am

Noisy trees,plenty of stinky pine needles randomly like driftwood,plenty of leaves,more decidious leaves as it goes more southerly,very unpleasant.

Ben on 18/04/2011 3:53am

Annoying weather in Aucklnad today sunny and plesant then pouring with rain and a freezing cold wind with the temp going up and down all day. Clear skies currently with an easing wind.

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