End predicted to capital weather

STACEY KIRK
Last updated 11:06 28/01/2013
The latest forecast

COUNTDOWN: The rain will return, it will.

COOLING OFF: Ashley Switzer and Shannon Lenihan in Wellington.
COOLING OFF: Ashley Switzer and Shannon Lenihan in Wellington.

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It was the weather forecast that had the country in disbelief - 10-plus days of sun in the capital.

Forecasters believe the 10-day run will be achieved, but there is now, prepare yourself, rain, see above, in the long range forecast for early next week.

"Everything does come to an end unfortunately, and eventually surrounding lows will start nibbling away at the edges of the high that's been stuck over the country," forecaster Daniel Corbett said today.

It was "extremely rare" for New Zealand to get 10 days of hot and settled weather anywhere in in the country, let alone in Wellington, Corbett said.

But two weather systems sitting at the southeast and northwest of New Zealand would begin eating away at the current high.

"We've been lucky, because the current system has been stuck in exactly the right place," Corbett said.

"It's sitting just south of Wellington and east of Christchurch.

"Last year, a high got stuck just north of New Zealand but it was just too high to get the good effects, and we were left with a lot of rain.

"Once this fine period ends, it could be a little unsettled and then we could see a few more fine days through the end of summer, but it's unlikely we'd get 10 days in a row again."

However, the weather isn't pleasing everyone, with severe drought conditions in many rural areas, particularly in the deep-south and central inland areas, where residents and farmers were feeling the heat worse than other places.

Wanaka scored yesterday's high of 31 degrees Celsius, and Alexandra was forecast to reach 32C today. The capital could expect 26C, while Auckland was headed for 25C, Hamilton 28C, Christchurch 27C and Dunedin 22C.

Firefighters and the Defence Force have been battling scrub fires around Christchurch for the past week, which have ignited in tinder dry conditions and destroyed bush, plantations and property.

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