Heavy rain, which has already forced the closure of
Fiordland's Milford Track, will make its way up the South
Island tomorrow, accompanied in places by powerful winds.
Much of the South Island is forecast to experience wind and
rain through the day, but it should be fine for most of the
A severe weather warning remains in place for heavy rain on
the west of the South Island until late tomorrow, with
significant spillover expected into the Otago and Canterbury
Environment Canterbury said up to 400mm of rain was expected
along the Alpine Divide today and tomorrow, and Environment
Southland said the headwaters of the Mataura River and the
Oreti River were both rising rapidly this afternoon.
Trampers and campers in the area were warned to stay away
from river beds.
The Milford Track was closed today after more than 250mm of
rain fell in the region overnight (Mon-Tue).
Department of Conservation spokesman Ross Kerr said the
Milford Track's accommodation for independent walkers was
full, and those who stayed in huts last night would spend
another night in them tonight (Tue).
No new walkers started the trail today.
It was hoped that the weather would clear enough tomorrow so
walkers could be helicoptered to safe parts of the track.
Other walking tracks in the area remained open.
MetService duty forecaster Larissa Marintchenko said the
heavy rain which has plagued Fiordland and Westland today
would spread north to Nelson and the Buller region tomorrow,
where about 120mm of rain could fall.
But she said most of the North Island would be "absolutely
However, Wellington and southern Wairarapa would not escape
the bad weather, with gusts up to 140km/h expected to blast
the south of the North Island overnight.
A severe weather warning for gales remains in place for
inland parts of Otago and Canterbury, Wellington and southern
Wairarapa today and tomorrow.
The strongest winds - gusting up to 140km/h - were likely
around inland parts of central and north Otago, as well as
around inland Canterbury.
Canterbury should also expect rain, Ms Marintchenko said.
Environment Southland is warning farmers that as the flood
peaks travel downstream it would also affect the middle and
lower reaches of the Mataura River and the Oreti rivers, so
farmers should consider whether they needed to move stock.