Temperatures to plunge as cold front moves in

Winter is well and truly on its way with temperatures set to drop around the country over the next few days.

The southerly change is predicted to bring snow down to 600 metres in Southland, Dunedin and the Southern Lakes area from Wednesday afternoon, and to 700 metres overnight in the Canterbury High Country.

MetService is calling it "the first significant snowfall for the year".

SNOWFALL WARNINGS

Road snowfall warnings are in place for alpine passes, the Crown Range Road linking Queenstown and Wanaka, and the Milford Road from Tuesday night and throughout Wednesday.

LINDIS PASS (SH8)

From 9pm on Tuesday until 2am on Wednesday: Snow showers are forecast to affect higher parts of the road tonight and early on Wednesday morning. 1cm to 2cm of snow may settle on the road near the summit, with lesser amounts down to 700 metres.

CROWN RANGE ROAD

From 7pm on Tuesday until 2am on Wednesday:  Snow showers are forecast to affect higher parts of the road tonight and early on Wednesday morning. 1cm to 2cm of snow may settle on the road near the summit, with lesser amounts down to 700 metres.

MILFORD ROAD (SH94)

From 9pm on Tuesday until 3am on Wednesday: Snow showers are forecast to affect higher parts of the road tonight and early on Wednesday morning. 1cm to 2cm of snow may settle on the road near the tunnel, with lesser amounts down to 700 metres.

LEWIS PASS (SH7)

From 6am-12pm on Wednesday: Snow showers are forecast to affect higher parts of the road during the morning. 1cm to 2cm of snow may settle on the road near the summit, with lesser amounts down to 700 metres.

ARTHUR'S PASS (SH73)

From 3am-7am on Wednesday:  Snow showers may affect the higher parts of the road during the morning. Up to 1cm of snow may settle on the road near the summit, with lesser amounts down to 700 metres.

PORTERS PASS (SH73)

From 3am-10am on Wednesday: Snow is forecast to affect the road during the morning. Some 5cm to 8cm of snow may settle on the road near the summit, with lesser amounts down to 600 metres.

HEAVY RAIN AND STRONG WINDS 

MetService forecasts fronts will move over the country from the southwest on Tuesday, bringing heavy rain to the west and strong northwesterlies in the east.

A heavy rain warning is in place for the ranges of Westland, set to bring 100mm more rain on top of what has already fallen until 8pm today.

Heavy rain watches are in place for Buller, and northwest Nelson, the Canterbury headwaters and northern Fiordland, the Tararua Range and Mt Taranaki.

Strong wind watches are in place for the Canterbury High Country, Marlborough, Wellington and Wairarapa.

While much of the country has experienced relatively high temperatures in the past few days, the southerly change will spread up the South Island on Tuesday and over the North Island on Wednesday.

"The difference will be most notable in the South Island, with a few locations set to see around a 10degC drop in temperature." MetService meteorologist Alwyn Bakker said.

Temperatures in Christchurch are expected to drop from an afternoon high of 22degC on Tuesday to a chilly 7degC on Wednesday morning, while Dunedin is forecast for a high of 19degC on Tuesday but just 11degC on Wednesday.

Wellington was expected to reach a high of 17degC on Tuesday but temperatures will plunge to 10degC on Wednesday morning. Auckland will stay reasonably warm, with a high of 22degC on Tuesday and 17degC on Wednesday.

- NZ Herald and ODT 

 

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