People in Christchurch should head to the beach or local park for a picnic this weekend, according to a meteorologist.
MetService weather forecaster Dan Corbett said Christchuch would have a a fine weekend with a high of 22 degrees C on Saturday and Sunday expecting to be even warmer at 25C.
The winds that had wrecked havoc in the South Island yesterday eased overnight.
Corbett suggested this weekend and next Monday would be ideal picnic or beach days in Canterbury as the by the middle of next week temperatures were likely to drop below 20 degrees C.
Lifeguards were preparing for a busy weekend ahead of the fine-weather forecasts.
Surf Life Saving New Zealand Programmes & Services Manager Scotty Roberts said people had started flocking to all of Canterbury's beaches, particularly Taylors Mistake and Sumner, during the past couple of days as the weather heated up.
Roberts said more lifeguards were on duty to cope with the increasing crowds.
"We just want everyone to slip, slop and slap," he said.
"We're hopefully seeing the start of summer."
Roberts said people should always listen to lifeguards and swim between the flags as sometimes there were rips that were not always obvious.
WILD WINDS CUT POWER, SHORTEN HOLIDAYS
Yesterday, winds gusting up to 140kmh blew over a caravan near Hapuku, about 14km north of Kaikoura, on State Highway 1, though no one was injured.
The wild winds also forced up to 40 families to pack up and leave the community-run Havelock Motor Camp between 4am and 8am. The strong winds had not caused any damage to the camping ground facilities.
Further south, fallen trees and branches cut power to about 600 homes in the Selwyn district.
About 395 Orion customers in Halswell and Prebbleton lost power for an hour yesterday afternoon after winds blew vegetation onto powerlines, while another 110 lost power around Lincoln and Leeston area for up to three hours.
Wild winds also cut power at noon to 101 homes around Coalgate, Sheffield and Springfield for just under an hour.
Power was out to all of Waimate for a period yesterday afternoon.
- The Press