New Year‘s sunshine

Clear skies to ring in the new year.

Southwesterlies ease and clear skies develop across the country this weekend, with MetService forecasting a delightful start to the New Year, perfect for firing up the BBQ.

A ridge of high pressure builds over the Tasman Sea and pushes onto New Zealand this weekend, delivering light winds, warm temperatures, and clear skies into the New Year.

However, before the bright weekend, unsettled weather continues for some today and Friday.

"A few weak fronts pass over the South Island today and tomorrow. Showers develop through Canterbury and Otago this afternoon, with a moderate risk of thunderstorms from mid Canterbury to North Otago," says MetService meteorologist Ashlee Parkes.

"However, those at Rhythm and Alps in Wanaka will see mainly fine weather, with a high temperature of 22°C for the rest of the festival."

Drizzle lingers in Canterbury on Friday morning before clearing to a fine day.

Fiordland and Westland will see rain or showers develop during Friday, with a few falls spreading east into Southland and Otago until evening.

One or two showers may pop up around the North Island on Friday but will clear shortly after sunset.

"Showers will continue for the west coast of the South Island, as well as coastal Southland on Friday evening, however the rest of Aotearoa will see clear skies during their New Years eve celebrations Friday night."

Any showers remaining along the west coast of the South Island will clear on Saturday morning, which means almost everyone will see sunny weather this weekend.

"We may see an isolated light shower along the northeastern coast of the North Island on Sunday, but apart from that it is looking like a stunner first weekend for 2022. Most will see maximum temperatures in the mid to late 20s, with some regions pushing to 30 degrees Celsius on Sunday."

The weather remains mostly settled during the first half of next week, with a few light showers for some coastal regions.

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