Sadly the run of dry weather could be about to end for Auckland this coming weekend, as northeasterlies prepare to take over after 18 January and then last for the rest of the month, bringing the potential for rain every few days.

The ensuing northeasterly airstreams are then expected to continue off and on until around 18 February. There are other fine intervals for Auckland to come, such as 30 January to 4 February and the last week of February, but apart from a few days around 23 February these days may not be as warm.

The last whole dry week for Auckland for this summer may begin 23 February and last until around 2 March. That week may also be the last of the above-25C maximums for the season.

For credibility of these claims, consider what we said on Yahoo News (NZ) on October 1, 2012. Quote: “ between 21st of November and 19th of January Auckland may have only about 5 rain days, with the 4th-22nd of December possibly the longest dry spell, followed by another between the 4th-18th of January.”
There will be some who think that summer has not yet begun, but perhaps because they have been stuck in buildings until the Christmas break maybe they have just not noticed how dry and sunny it has been in Auckland since the last week in November

We cannot trust our memories, and the dryness of the weather over the past two months in the north can be verified with figures and graphs from other websites. Graphs from Weather Underground for Auckland show (since 21 November) recordable rain in Auckland only around 29th of November, 6th, 24th, 25th and 30th of December, and 3rd of January, making 6 rain days in all.

That we did foretell the summer thus far, indicates the reliability of this lunar longrange weather method, bearing in mind that although the prediction was issued publicly on 1 October on Yahoo News and also on our website, the same information was residing in the 2012 and 2013 almanacs which are always written two years beforehand to satisfy publishers' timetables.

The best summer weather was always going to come at the front end of the season, and this year March, whilst remaining fairly warm, promises heavy rains and some flooding, also April may be warm and wet after the 8th. March will also probably usher in cyclones, as a late monsoon season finally gets going across the top of Australia, but the monsoon and cyclone seasons are likely to be fizzers.

So what is still in store for January? For Auckland, some heavy downpours are expected between 19-21 January. The lead-up to Anniversary Weekend may be dry but some rain is likely on that weekend itself, with more in eastern districts than in the west. Skies then clear about 29 January for about 6 days before rain returns to hamper Waitangi Day celebrations.

In the next 4 weeks in other parts of the country, the rain count may be high in Marlborough and Nelson and parts of Northland. Rotorua may also be wet. Hawkes Bay rain also arrives at or near 19-20 January and again around 6 February. There should be sunny conditions in the next four weeks in all southern and eastern regions, particularly along the South Island West Coast, also Southland, central Otago and Canterbury. Most of the South Island should be dry 20-30 January

Temperatures are expected to be mostly closer to average but warmer than average in Otago and parts of Northland but cooler than average in inland Bay of Plenty, Marlborough, Nelson and coastal Southland.

Overall, February may be sunny and mild but rain in the first week breaks a dry spell. Around 8th, there may be heavy rains and floods for North Island and the West Coast of South Island but overall rain should be around average for both islands for that month. The driest district may be Northland. Auckland February rain is mostly around 6th, 12th and 15th.

In February both islands can expect average sunshine and average temperatures, except for warmer spots in Northland, Waikato, Central Plateau, Taranaki, Manawatu and lower North Island. Further south the West Coast may be warmer, also the hydrolakes to Queenstown and Te Anau. The last week of February may see a brief return to summer weather for most.

Ken Ring of is author of the Weather Almanac for NZ for 2013 (Random House publisher).

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