Weather: Snow in the south, strong winds up to 120kmh for Wellington and Wairarapa

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Some windy, wild weather is predicted for Wellington on Friday. (File photo)

Kevin Stent/Stuff

Some windy, wild weather is predicted for Wellington on Friday. (File photo)

It’s a blustery start to the weekend with Wellington set to bear the brunt of gales sweeping up the country.

After a dusting of snow fell in the South Island overnight, a strong weather warning has been issued for the Wellington and Wairarapa regions on Friday.

Throughout the day on Friday, MetService warns that northwest gales could severe at times in exposed places, with gusts forecast up to 120kmh.

A strong wind warning is also in place for the Canterbury High Country north of the Rakaia River, with possible 120kmh gusts also predicted on Friday.

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The forecaster has a strong wind watch in place for the Tararua District until Friday evening, stating that westerly winds may approach severe gales at times.

While a wind watch is also in place for the Canterbury Plains north of Darfield until the early afternoon.

The gusty weather is due to a weakening front that’s moving northeast over the country on Friday, bringing strong northwesterlies to the central parts of the country.

Snow fell on Gorge Hill between Te Anau and Mossburn on Friday morning.


Snow fell on Gorge Hill between Te Anau and Mossburn on Friday morning.

The cooler airmass saw temperatures plummet in the South Island, with some parts of Fiordland and Southland seeing sprinklings of snow on Thursday night and Friday morning. Snow had fallen to 200m in some areas, affecting roads.

Residents in Naseby in Central Otago said it was snowing at around 10am and getting heavier.

Places at higher altitudes may still get a further dusting in the early hours of Saturday morning.

Despite the cool temperatures in the south, most of Aotearoa is expected to be fine on Saturday, although a few showers will linger in western regions until Sunday.

In the main centres, Aucklanders can expect a mostly fine day on Friday, with some cloud in the afternoon. A high of 22 degrees Celsius is forecast. Both Saturday and Sunday are also looking mostly fine in the city of sails, with some cloudy periods throughout the days and southwesterly winds. A high of 19C is forecast on both days.

In Wellington, northwesterly gales could gust up to 120kmh in exposed places, but are expected to ease on Friday evening. On Saturday, cloud should clear into a mostly fine day with winds easing, and a high of 18C forecast. Sunday will be a fine day for the capital with a high of 15C and a low of 10C forecast.

Hamilton should see highs of 21C on Friday with a possible late afternoon or evening shower. Cloudy periods and Southwesterlies are expected on Saturday, with highs of 19C. Sunday will see morning cloud, then fine.

In Christchurch, showers are expected to clear by Friday afternoon, with a high of 21C and a low of 9C forecast. Cloud will clear on Saturday into a mostly fine day with a high of 21C. Sunday is expected to be fine with a high of 20C, and some strong southerlies are forecast for Banks Peninsula.

Those in Dunedin can expect some showers throughout the day on Friday with southwesterlies developing, and a high of 16C. On Saturday, cloudy periods and strong southwesterlies are on the cards, with a high of 17C. Sunday however will be a sunny day with a high of 16C.

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