Warmer, drier July - despite the past few days

While Northland faces more cleanups after heavy rain over the weekend, Wellington is enjoying a warmer, drier month than usual.

Wellingtonians could be forgiven for thinking July had been a bad month, given the southerlies, rain and hail over the past few days.

But the average July temperature to date has been 10.1 degrees Celsius at Wellington Airport, warmer than the average of 9.3C since 1962, MetService meteorologist David Miller said.

So far this month, 55.8 millimetres of rain had fallen, roughly half the usual July rainfall of 110mm.

Wellington's wind speeds were normal for July, blowing at an average 25kmh, compared with the long-term norm of 24kmh.

"The last few days have been quite miserable, but think back a week or so and the weather was settled," Miller said.

Despite yesterday feeling distinctly chilly, it was 9C, far from the coldest day of the year, he said. The bitter southerly, blowing at 45kmh, made it feel much colder outside.

The next few days would continue to be cool, with an unstable southwesterly flow developing today, he said. Snow could be expected on the Rimutaka hills tonight and tomorrow.

Temperatures as low as freezing point in Wairarapa would not rise to much more than 6C and 8C, and Wellington's hilly suburbs could get some sleet, MetService meteorologist Liz Walsh said.

The capital's high over the next two days would be about 9C, with lows of about 4C and 5C.

"Towards the end of the week, the maximum temperatures will be higher but, because of the clearing skies, it means the low temperatures overnight will be colder."

There were still plenty of cold southerlies to come, Walsh said.

Yesterday a minor slip on the Wairarapa side of the Rimutaka Hill Road delayed traffic in the afternoon.

In the far north, severe weather caused problems with "about nine" slips between Whangarei and Auckland.

State Highway 1 near the Brynderwyn Hills was closed for several hours after a large slip and a number of houses were flooded in Maungaturoto.

For the 24 hours to 6am Sunday show that more than 100mm of rain fell in some locations in Northland. Opouteke recorded the highest rainfall with 63.5mm over the 24 hours.

The Dominion Post