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Cromwell recorded the national high of 27.6degC yesterday, and neighbouring Alexandra, Omakau and Wanaka were close behind with temperatures ranging between 25degC and 27degC.
MetService meteorologist April Clark said the hot weather was the result of clear skies and low winds in the region.
She said a front with wind gusts up to 140kmh was expected to pass over the region this morning, bringing some showers and temperatures up to 25degC in Central Otago and Dunedin, and 27degC in Oamaru.
She warned wind gusts of that strength could damage insecure buildings and vegetation, and make driving conditions hazardous, especially for motorcycles and high-sided vehicles.
The gales were expected to ease in the afternoon, she said.
Cloudy but dry conditions would follow and the winds would ease.
However, showers and cooler temperatures are expected on Thursday, especially in coastal regions.
Friday was expected to be brighter and drier.
She said Saturday and Sunday were on the edge of the weather radar, but it was expected the weather would be gusty with a few showers.
She reminded Otago residents it was still four days until New Year's Eve, and the forecast could change.