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A heavy rain warning is in place for the West Coast, while the Milford Road will close on Saturday afternoon due to forecast snow and thunderstorms.
The MetService issued the severe weather warning for Westland, with between 120mm and 150mm of rain expected to fall about the ranges in the south during a 21-hour period.
A complex trough would bring downpours on Saturday afternoon, with heavy falls set to continue until midday on Sunday.
People in the area, especially trampers, should keep an eye out for rapidly rising waterways and localised slips and flooding, MetService said.
The New Zealand Transport Agency advised that the Milford Road on State Highway 94 (Holyford Valley Rd to Chasm Stream Bridge) would be closed from 4pm on Saturday due to forecast snow and thunder.
MetService said up to 8cm of snow was expected to fall near the tunnel from Saturday evening until early on Sunday morning.
Christchurch and Dunedin would get mostly sunny weather on Saturday, with just a few periods of high cloud.
It was a drizzly morning for many in the North Island but the skies should clear by evening for most areas.
Things were looking brighter on the East Coast, with a fine day - apart from a chance afternoon shower - forecast for Hastings.
Temperatures would be generally mild - highs in the late teens and low 20s were forecast for most of New Zealand.
Although skies should be drier on Sunday, there would still be a bit of cloud around.
It would be a sunny Sunday in Christchurch, bar a bit of high cloud, but further south towards Dunedin cloud would increase before rain developed in the evening.
Northland, Auckland and Hamilton were forecast to get the odd shower later in the day and there would be occasional rain north of Wellington.
(Source - MetService.com)