Mild outlook for rest of winter - Niwa
While parts of the country suffered through a freezing start to winter, the outlook for the next three months should bring some relief.
For Christchurch, which experienced its coldest day on record on June 6, it's quite possible the worst of winter is behind it, according to Niwa's seasonal climate outlook.
Forecasts for July through to September predict near-average temperatures for New Zealand, apart from the West Coast and south of the South Island, which will experience average or above average temperatures.
Overall, it would be a relatively dry winter, but as always, frosts and snowfalls typical of winter and early spring would occur from time to time, Niwa said.
Coming out on top were the West Coast, Southern Alps and foothills, inland Otago and Southland, with a forecast for near-average or above average temperatures, and a 40 per cent chance for below average rainfall.
The north and west of the North Island, including Northland, Auckland, Waikato and Bay of Plenty, would probably be the wettest, with near-normal rainfall expected, compared to normal or below normal for the rest of the country.
New Zealand was currently experiencing a neutral weather condition, neither La Nina nor El Nino.
However, an El Nino was likely to set in by Spring if sea temperature trends continued, Niwa said.
An El Nino was characterised by south-westerly winds, which could bring colder conditions to much of the country. In spring, southwesterlies generally tended to be stronger and more frequent and presented a mix of summer and winter effects.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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