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For many centres the mercury struggled to get much above zero this morning, with eastern parts of the South Island and central North Island plummeting to bone-chilling negative territory.
Just before 6am, Dunedin airport was the coldest spot in the country, recording -5.2degC, while Alexandra was sitting at -3.4degC and Ashburton was on -2.3degC.
In the North Island, the coldest sports were Waiouru on -3.5degC and Taumarunui on -2.5degC.
MetService forecaster Mmathapelo Makgabutlane said frosts blanketed the South Island and parts of the North Island for the second day in a row.
Yesterday, Niwa forecast the temperature to get so cold that frosts would be possible in rural south Auckland.
Makgabutlane said the central North Island experienced bitterly cold temperatures, and the coldest they had reached so far this year.
MetService is warning of another unsettled spell of weather for the weekend, with a succession of fronts sweeping across the country.
Early next week central and southern New Zealand can expect to be hit by heavy rain, gales and snow.