Rain, hail before sunny weekend

Thunder and hail could hit Auckland today as another front moves over the country but it should clear in time for a fine weekend.

Heavy showers will hit much of western New Zealand throughout the day, with a chance of thunder and hail for the West Coast, New Plymouth, Hamilton and Auckland in the afternoon, MetService said.

No severe weather warnings are in place so rainfall will not be excessive and should be gone by Saturday morning, MetService said.

Flood-hit Nelson will avoid most of the rain today and get just a few brief showers in the afternoon.

The front will sweep across the country by evening and everywhere, except for Hawke's Bay and Gisborne, can expect showers at some point.

However, temperatures will remain mild, with much of the North Island expecting to reach at least 15 degrees Celsius.

Wellington can expect a blustery day with persistent showers in the afternoon and a high of 15C.

Christchurch will reach a high of 14C and have brief showers in the evening, while Dunedin will top just 11C but have a mainly fine day.

A high will move in over the country on Saturday, making for a bright and sunny weekend for most areas, MetService said.

Although fine, it will be a cold weekend for many as the predominant wind will be from the south, MetService said.

The fine weather will be short lived though, as a new weather system will bring rain to large parts of the country for the back-to-work trudge on Monday.