Tauranga cops most rainfall

By Julia Proverbs

Over the past couple of months we have been pelted with rain so torrential that it closed roads and caused sodden land to slide.

At times it seemed unrelenting.

And now it's official - Tauranga was the wettest place to be this winter.

Of the country's six main centres, Tauranga was doused with the most rain.

Rainfall of 512mm was recorded over the months of June, July and August, nearly one and a half times more than Tauranga's normal winter rainfall.

That made it the city's 15th wettest winter since 1900.

The wettest winter was recorded in 1927, when 693mm of rain fell.

The next wettest centres this winter were Hamilton and Wellington, with 463mm and 429mm of rain respectively.

Auckland was the warmest and sunniest, Christchurch the coolest, Dunedin the driest and Wellington the cloudiest.

Tauranga was, however, no colder than usual, with a mean temperature of 11.1C.

The National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (Niwa) said this was "near average". Notable temperatures during winter were a frosty 0.1C on the morning of June 13 and a balmy 19.2C on June 6.

Niwa climate scientist Georgina Griffiths said winter 2012 had been "a season of two halves".

The first half of winter was cold and dry, with the second half being wet and warm.

The second half of winter was dominated by northeasterlies, which tended to bring wet weather.

It was not unusual for Tauranga to be one of the wettest areas in the country during the winter months, Ms Griffiths said.

"Auckland and Tauranga usually get top of the pops," she said.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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