Tropical air in the north and a front in the south

January 11, 2016

The weekend saw some fine weather for most parts of New Zealand, with just the odd shower in some places. Severe Weather Warnings and Watches were issued for severe gales in southern parts of the country overnight Saturday and into Sunday morning. Gusts of 118 km/h were recorded at Mt. Cook and 113 km/h at Invercargill airport.

A ridge of high pressure over New Zealand today means settled weather. People in the South Island and the southwest of the North Island will see some sunshine today, although it will become cloudier this evening for some areas in the west and north. Further north, people can expect it to be fairly cloudy, though it should remain dry for most. Coromandel Peninsula has the greatest chance of showers today.

Despite the fine weather today, changes are coming on Tuesday. Tropical Cyclone Ula, currently a category 4 cyclone situated east of New Caledonia, is forecast to move southwards today and tomorrow while weakening. Tropical Cyclone Ula will be situated 500 – 600 km north of Cape Reinga by the end of Tuesday.

“While TC Ula will remain well north of New Zealand for the next few days, humid air coming down from the tropics ahead of it will cause some rain during Tuesday for most of the North Island except the most southern parts,” MetService meteorologist Claire Flynn said. “While this rain could be heavy at times for a few places in the north, rainfall accumulations are not expected to be unusually large.” Rain should clear for most places in the North Island by the end of Tuesday.

For the South Island, a cold front is expected to approach from the south late on Tuesday. Eastern areas can expect fine weather and temperatures in the mid to late twenties on Tuesday afternoon. However, the cold front will bring rain to the west and showers to the east as it moves northwards on Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning. Southerly winds behind the front will mean that Wednesday will be much cooler for eastern areas, with temperatures in the mid to late teens.

On Wednesday, a ridge of high pressure begins to build across the whole country, bringing settled weather, before beginning to move away on Thursday. Another cold front then approaches from the south on Friday.

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