Taupo off to a sub-zero start
Parts of the lower North Island dropped below freezing early on Monday during what was likely Taupo’s coldest night of 2017.
At 6am on Monday, Metservice recorded temperatures of -3C in Taupo.
It was -2degC in Upper Hutt, -1C in Wainuiomata, 0C in Porirua and Kapiti, while Lower Hutt got to 2C and Wellington city to 4C.
Palmerston North got to -1.3C, Masterton in Wairarapa dropped to -1C, while Hastings and Napier in Hawke’s Bay got to 2C and 2.6C respectively.
According to Metservice, the chill was caused by a cold air mass from the south mixed with overnight cooling on a clear night.
While it was too early to say if the night was the coldest yet in Wellington in 2017, that was ‘‘fairly likely’’, a Metservice spokesman said.
Monday was expected to be fine but cold for most of New Zealand.
‘‘It is going to be a cold and fresh start for a lot of people,’’ a Metservice spokesman said.
Areas around Mt Ruapehu saw first snow fall of the year, just in time for the mountain’s opening on Queen’s Birthday long weekend.
Roads in the central North Island were closed due to the snow fall and towns like Ohakune, National Park and Raetihi woke up to a winter wonderland.