Weekend storm precedes calm spell

By Roger Moroney

A 17-day mid-winter dry spell for the Bay cities was broken by the weekend rain, although MetService forecasts show the showers and drizzle which descended early Saturday were effectively the storm before the calm.

Spring-like conditions are set to push the damp northeasterly weather system away late today as a more temperate westerly high moves across the region.

"Rain is expected to clear in the morning or later [this] afternoon," Metservice meteorologist Ian Gall said.

"Winds should turn northwesterly in the middle of the day, which is the reason for those fine spells on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday," he said.

"It's looking like a pretty good week for you, mainly fine with northwesterly winds."

From Tuesday through to the end of Thursday sunshine and northwesterlies will dominate, with daytime temperatures set to reach 17C and 18C while the overnight lows hover between 5C and 8C.

More light rain is forecast for next Friday but will clear to make way for a sunny Saturday - although the airs with be southerly driven and highs are not expected to top 14C.

The latest rain front delivered the heaviest falls in the high country, with 54.5mm recorded up until mid-afternoon yesterday at Te Koau in the Kaweka Ranges and 33.5mm at Maunganui 20km northwest of Kaiwaka.

Te Haroto on the Napier-Taupo highway however escaped with just 9mm in that period although some heavy falls were recorded at Te Pohue.

A "steady rain" warning had been issued for mainly the Hawke's Bay high country yesterday, while a severe weather watch had been put in place for the Gisborne region. Some areas of Gisborne were forecast to get up to 100mm over 24 hours.

Eastern District traffic police said there had been no major issues on the highways across the Bay.

A spokesman said there had been a report of a slip near the Devil's Elbow yesterday morning but a check of the area showed a contracting crew "using just shovels" had cleared it.

There had been no major weather-related crashes and police said motorists appeared to be driving to the conditions well.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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