Summer weather forecast: nice

Warm, dry weather: check. Barbecue: check. Sunscreen and togs: check.

It appears the South is shaping up to be warmer and drier than average again over the next three months, making for another great summer.

Niwa National Climate Centre scientists say temperatures are likely to be average, if not warmer than average, across Otago and Southland.

Rainfall totals, soil moisture levels and river flows in inland Otago and Southland are most likely to be near normal.

However, coastal areas of Otago are likely to experience below normal rainfall totals, soil moisture levels and river flows.

Principal scientist Chris Brandolino said between November 2018 and January 2019, atmospheric circulation around New Zealand would be characterised by higher pressure than normal around the country and lower pressure than normal to the southwest.

"Frequent high pressure systems are expected around and over the country during November.

"For the three-month period as a whole, westerly quarter airflow anomalies are expected, though periodic easterly quarter airflows are possible.''

He said the ocean made significant strides towards producing El Nino conditions during October 2018, and there was an 88% chance El Nino "Modoki'' conditions would develop over November-January.

El Nino Modoki is a non-conventional type where the maximum sea surface temperature (SST) anomaly is located in the central Pacific rather than the eastern Pacific.

"The circulation pattern is expected to be associated with above average or near average temperatures for New Zealand, including several very warm spells during November.

"Below normal or near normal rainfall is forecast for most regions of New Zealand.

"Above average or near average sea surface temperatures are expected in New Zealand coastal waters during the next three months,'' he said.


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