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Warm and sunny June


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  • Location: City of Gales, New Zealand, 150m ASL
  • Location: City of Gales, New Zealand, 150m ASL



So, May turns out to not be much of a good prediction for the winter ahead!

It was only 0.7C cooler than May.

Average temperature of 8.9C, which is 0.5C above normal.

Of particular note was that inland Canterbury and Central Otago were between 1.5C and 2.0C warmer than normal- these are usually the coldest parts of the country in winter.

A continuation of the usual tend for the country- that is, sunshine hours continue to increase (this has been the case now for at least the last 6 months, and possibly all the way back to last July with only October being particularly dull).

In Wellington, we had an average temperature of 10.4C, which is about 1C above normal. Rainfall about normal, sunshine hours were 123, which is an average of 4 hours per day, quite pleasant for winter (considering that I am from the UK)!

The first three weeks were rather exceptional, incessant sunny and warm weather, with highs getting to 17C here on a few days, allowing enjoyable gloating rights over those back home. The final week of June was where it all went "wrong"!

Warm Temperatures

Highest was 23.1C, this is only just shy of the South Island record June temperature of 24C. I also believe this temperature is higher than any recorded anywhere last winter (there will always be a few 20C+ temperatures somewhere in the east).

Record June high temperatures were also found in Blenheim (21C) and Haast (19C, in a Foehn SE'erly).

In terms of record mean temperatures, there were several of these also. Many places across the South Island had their highest ever mean June maximum temperatures (averaging double figures in many places).

Kaikohe (inland Far North) recorded a June mean temperature of 13C, which, for winter, is rather warm it must be said.

Dargaville (western Northland) must have had plenty of warm nights, with their mean minimum temperature of 10C being the warmest ever.

Cold Temperatures

The only place that had a "cold month" was coastal southern Hawke's Bay. No one lives there.

Coldest temperature was -7.5C at Hanmer Forest. Not especially cold really.

More interesting than extremes are the variations we had during a classic situation of a Foehn nor'wester dying out to be rapidly replaced by cold southerlies and snow (e.g. 19C at midnight, then 0C in the early afternoon). The attached graph shows this.


NZ continues to outdo itself in windiness with a gust of 114mph recorded at Hick's Bay. Perhaps not outdoing itself really, the country does tend to get higher gusts than the UK.


20cm of lying snow in the Maniototo one day. Porter's Pass (South Island) closed by snow, and the Desert Road (part of the main north-south route on the North Island) was also closed by snow.


152mm in one day for Milford Sound. This would constitute almost 50% of the annual rainfall for Alexandra, which is only 80 miles away!

Severe Weather:

Several centimetres of snow to sea level on the South Island on the 7th June.

From the 24th to the 28th, there were thunderstorms and hail across much of the North Island, knocking holes out police communications, striking holes in planes, lifting roofs, cutting power and so on.

On the 29th, gales in Wellington (gusting to 90mph) led to 7 metre swells, cancelled ferries and regional flights.

Comparison with the UK December of 2007:

Mean temperatures:

UK: 4C (1C above average)

NZ: 9C (0.5C above average).

Extreme temperatures:

UK: Max temperature of 17C, Minimum temperature of -13C

NZ: Max temperature of 23C, Minimum temperature of -8C.

Funnily, the max NZ temperature in June was 1C higher than in May, and the minima were the same. Only a few years ago, -22C was recorded in NZ during a July. I think it will take something special to get near that this year (last winter somewhere got down to -16C).

In summary, quite a good month to be in the country. Excitement early on and at the end, which bookended some nice warm and sunny spells in the middle of the month! :unknw:

It will be interesting to see for how long we can continue to get increased sunshine hours? Wellington should hit 1200 towards the end of July.


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