A cooler wetter start to February

February 2, 2015

For many parts of the North Island the first week of February is setting up to be wetter than the whole of January with a return to more of an unsettled spell of weather. A humid northwesterly flow across the country will continue to bring some heavier falls of rain, especially in North Taranaki, Westland and Fiordland where rainfall warnings remain in force for Monday.

January was a dry and warm month for many parts of the country and it was also one of the sunniest on record. In Auckland just over 308 hours of sunshine were recorded during January, making it the sunniest month on record. Tauranga also recorded plenty of sunshine with 327.5 hours, just six minutes short of the sunniest month there since 1935. Dunedin observed its sunniest January, and Hamilton its fourth sunniest.

While cloudier skies and spells of rain are set to be the theme of the weather for the North Island on Monday, in the South Island thunderstorms are again a threat for parts of Southland and Otago. For Canterbury and eastern Marlborough the dry weather holds on for another day with the temperature set to rise into the high twenties for many spots east of the Southern Alps.

A brighter day can be expected across the North Island on Tuesday, with high temperatures returning for Hawkes Bay and Gisborne. Meanwhile a cooler southwesterly change will spread northwards across the South Island, bringing a scattering of showers and cooler temperatures. Forecast temperatures in Christchurch are expected to drop from 30C on Monday to a cooler 21C on Tuesday .

The south westerly change continues to move across New Zealand over the rest of the week leading to a cooler and showery set up for Waitangi Day, although the showers should ease through the weekend.

Keep up to date with the latest forecasts and any watches/warnings at metservice.com or on mobile devices atm.metservice.com. You can also follow our updates on MetService TV, at MetService New Zealand on Facebook, @metservice on Twitter and at blog.metservice.com.

For further information please contact:
John Law Meteorologist (04)4700 754

MetService issues Warnings, Watches and Outlooks for severe weather over New Zealand.
Warnings are about taking action:
* When severe weather is imminent or is occurring
* Issued only when required
* Recommendation: ACT
Watches are about being alert:
* When severe weather is possible, but not sufficiently imminent or certain for a Warning to be issued
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* Issued routinely once or twice a day
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