Strong northwesterly winds ahead of a cold front

January 14, 2016

Northwesterly winds are expected to strengthen across many parts of the South Island and lower North Island tonight ahead of a cold front approaching from the south. Fine weather and warm temperatures in the east of the South Island will come to an end as the front gradually moves up the South Island on Friday.

“This front will bring rain with some heavy falls to western parts of the South Island on Friday. However, further east lesser amounts of rainfall are expected,” said MetService Meteorologist Claire Flynn. “A ridge of high pressure sitting over the North Island today and Friday will prevent the cold front from progressing much further north.”

People in the North Island should see sunshine in between cloudy periods, with the odd shower scattered across the Island today and early tomorrow morning. Eastern areas could be getting quite warm on Friday thanks to northwesterly winds and blue skies, with temperatures pegged to reach the thirties in Hawke’s Bay.

For the weekend, most places in the North Island should see some fine weather; the exceptions to this are a few showers for northern parts. Also, southwestern areas of the North Island will be mainly cloudy on Saturday with a few showers, but Wellington and Kapiti can expect patchy rain or drizzle. In the South Island, western areas will gradually become fine throughout the weekend. Scattered rain or drizzle in eastern areas – left behind by Friday’s front – should gradually clear on Saturday but return on Sunday, while a few coastal showers pepper the far south.

Further afield, something is brewing in the tropics. A tropical depression near the Cook Islands has been developing over the past few days. This depression is expected to deepen today and tomorrow and be named as a tropical cyclone by the weekend, affecting the Northern Cook Islands.  Meanwhile, former Cyclone Ula continues to weaken to the north of New Zealand and is forecast to remain well offshore.  Further details can be found at

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


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. They are 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. They are issued only when required.
Recommendation: BE READY 

Outlooks are about looking ahead, providing advance information on possible future Watches and/or Warnings. They are issued routinely once or twice a day.
Recommendation: PLAN 

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