Snow on the cards for Sunday

Bins continue to be emptied despite the snow at Turner St yesterday morning. PHOTO: GERARD O’BRIEN
Snow is possible for Sunday. Photo: ODT files
Snow is on the cards for much of the country this weekend, with Metservice saying the chances are "pretty good".

A low-pressure system is on its way from the Tasman sea and will move across the country on Friday and Saturday.

Metservice forecaster Mmathapelo Makgabutlane said a large amount of southerly air and wind flow is lurking behind the low-pressure system which will lower the snow levels across the country on Sunday and Monday.

"There's quite a cold air mass in circulation, we see that snow reaching to lower levels than we would normally see.

"At this point, it is looking pretty good for there to be some snow, especially for the South Island regions, and there are indications for possible snow in the central plateau of the North Island, so things are still tracking fairly well for that to happen."

The places most likely to see snow are high-level areas such as the Westland ranges, Fiordland, Southland and Canterbury in the South Island. There's a chance Marlborough and the Nelson ranges could also see snow.

"The bulk of the South Island especially the higher elevated places we are expecting at least some snowfall."

In the North Island, snow is expected to fall on the central plateau and the Tararua ranges as well.

Forecaster WeatherWatch is predicting snow to around 100m to 200m is most likely to fall in Otago and Southland, while Canterbury looks to have snow chances around 200m.

Early estimates suggest that flurries may go down to 300 or 400m in the North Island, they said.

Today, most of the country is expected to see some rain, with thunderstorms possible for western areas and the top of the South Island.

"Those thunderstorms do bring the possibility of hail. Generally, the eastern parts will see some showers as well but they will see a few more fine breaks than the rest."

In Auckland and Northland today strong winds are expected.

"It could be quite gusty, a situation where we could see quite strong westerly to southwesterly winds for the Auckland region."

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