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An unsettled outlook for Queen’s Birthday Weekend

The long weekend's weather outlook. Image: MetService.

MetService is forecasting unsettled weather for this long weekend and a warm start to winter on the June 1.

An area of low pressure from the north Tasman Sea is forecast to move southeastwards across the North Island this long weekend, bringing periods of rain or showers to northern and central New Zealand.

Meanwhile, a ridge of high pressure remains anchored over southern New Zealand, bringing settled weather there.

Although the unsettled outlook for the weekend may upset peoples’ plans, folk living in very dry parts of the country, especially those involved in agriculture and horticulture, will be hoping for plenty of rain.

“A useful 20 to 40mm of rain fell across southern parts of Northland and northern parts of Auckland during Wednesday, but much more rain is needed to make a difference in these and other dry regions," says MetService meteorologist Peter Little.

"There remains some uncertainty as to how quickly the low will move across the North Island. If it moves slowly it has the potential to bring heavy and more prolonged rain to northeastern areas."

Since it’s the first long weekend since New Zealand transitioned to COVID-19 alert level 2, roads are expected to be busy as people take the opportunity to visit extended family.

“Drivers will need to be patient and are reminded to drive to the conditions, especially as roads may be wet. You can use the NZTA journey planner to help plan your trip."

Meteorological winter starts on Monday, being the first day of June, though not that many people may notice.

“The predominant northerly wind flow means temperatures will be warmer than average for the next week, and when combined with cloud cover it will keep many North Island places in double digits overnight.

"However, over southern New Zealand, morning frosts and some persistent areas of fog are likely due to clear skies and light winds associated with high pressure."

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