It's official - Dunedin had New Zealand's most dismal weather
NIWA figures show that of the six main centres, Dunedin
was the coolest and cloudiest during the summer holiday
It was not much better inland with Central Otago experiencing
rainfall well above normal.
Among the main centres, Auckland was the warmest in January,
Tauranga claimed the sunniest title, with Christchurch the
driest and Wellington the wettest.
NIWA's climate analysis for the first month of 2014 showed
strong winds caused temperatures to drop below normal.
The unseasonably cold weather brought the average temperature
for the country down to just 16C, with one place - Waiouru -
recording the decidedly wintry temperature of -2.7C on
The South Island and much of the Waikato and
Manawatu-Wanganui regions were more than 1.2C below the
January average, NIWA data showed.
Most other areas were also below average, with only Hawke's
Bay, Gisborne, eastern Northland and Auckland, as well as the
coastal strip north of Bank's Peninsula in the South Island,
being near average.
The colder than normal summer was due to much lower pressures
over the country and to the west and south, NIWA said.
"These regional pressure patterns resulted in a strong
southwesterly flow anomaly across the country, which caused
significantly lower than normal temperatures for the time of
year across much of the country, especially in the south and
But the country also experienced below normal levels of rain
- less than 50 per cent of the January normal fell in
Northland, parts of Waikato, Hawke's Bay, and around
In contrast, the Wellington region, and parts of Marlborough,
Central Otago, and Fiordland experienced well above normal,
amounting to more than 149 per cent of the January normal.
Higher than usual rainfall was also seen in parts of north
Canterbury and Taranaki.
Meanwhile, the stint of glorious summer weather that has
swept the country over the weekend will continue for much of
the week, MetService said, with only one "unsettled blip"
"The typical summer pattern continues with some good sized
slow-moving highs. However, sandwiched in between these highs
will be an area of low pressure that will bring wet weather
to many parts around the middle of the week," said MetService
media and communications meteorologist Daniel Corbett.
A weather system from the south Tasman Sea will spread wet
weather up the west coast of the South Island by the end of
Tuesday, and across many other places on Wednesday and
The best of the weather for Waitangi day will be in the south
of the country as rain retreats northwards during the day, Mr
"This passing weather system could be quite active for a
time, bringing some brief heavy bursts of rain together with
the risk of scattered thunderstorms especially along the West
Coast," he said.
However, it will continue to move north, and will be followed
by a drier and more settled weather in time for the Rugby
January weather facts:
- The highest temperature was 33.8C, recorded at Leeston
(near Christchurch) on January 19.
- The lowest temperature was -2.7C, observed at Waiouru on
- The highest one-day rainfall was 220mm, at North Egmont on
- The highest wind gust was 183km/h, at Cape Turnagain on
- Of the available, regularly reporting sunshine observation
sites, the sunniest four centres so far in 2014 are:
Whakatane (314 hours), Tauranga (301 hours), Gisborne (296
hours) and Lake Tekapo (296 hours).
- Patrice Dougan of APNZ