Chilly weather brrr-eaks frost record

• New Zealand awakes to the heaviest frost of the year
• Temperatures plunged as low as -7C overnight
• The icy temperatures have frozen dog bowls and blanketed fields with frost

Kiwis have woken up to the heaviest frost of 2016 in many parts of the country.

Temperatures have reached as low as -7C causing "severe" frosts in parts of Otago, including Cromwell and Dunedin, while parts of Canterbury got down to -4C.

A spokesman for Dunedin Airport said aircraft had been de-iced this morning, but flights were taking off and landing as scheduled.

An early morning walker strolls past a misty Auckland Harbour Bridge on a cold winters morning as seen from Westhaven Marina. Photo / Jason Oxenham
An early morning walker strolls past a misty Auckland Harbour Bridge on a cold winters morning as seen from Westhaven Marina. Photo / Jason Oxenham

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He said yesterday black ice on the runway had caused delays between 5am and about 11am, due to rain overnight, but this morning there was no ice on the runway.

Further north, a spokeswoman for Christchurch airport said no aircraft had required de-icing - despite temperatures dropping below zero overnight.

And the North Island is not immune to the cold snap, with temperatures in parts of Waikato also dropping as low as -4C. Auckland got away lightly but still shivered through sub-zero lows as cold as -2C in some suburbs.

At 7.45am it was 2C in Auckland, with a forecast high of 13C at 2pm, according to MetService.

An Air New Zealand spokeswoman said aircraft de-icing caused the delay of four outbound jet services at Auckland Airport and three outbound regional services.

"NZ8677 Kerikeri-Auckland and NZ8251 Whangarei-Auckland were also delayed due to icy conditions. No international or inbound services were impacted," she said.

"Obviously this has some flow on effect on our schedule."

"So cold in Waitakeres my car has grown fur", one reader said. Photo / The Zame Family
"So cold in Waitakeres my car has grown fur", one reader said. Photo / The Zame Family

WeatherWatch analyst Phil Duncan said it was the coldest morning so far for many places this year, with frosts stretching from Southland to Northland.

He warned that some Auckland sub-tropical plant owners might find their specimens badly damaged or wiped out by frosts in parts of the city this morning.

One reader sent in a photo of his back lawn grass. Photo / Damian Kobylinski
One reader sent in a photo of his back lawn grass. Photo / Damian Kobylinski

Mr Duncan said it was a very cold start to the day.

"We've seen temperatures down to -7C and -8C around a number of parts of Central Otago, Canterbury and even southern parts of Waikato," he said.

"That's very, very cold obviously, getting to the point where you can get pipes starting to freeze."

Even coastal areas were getting big frosts, including parts of West Auckland, where temperatures dropped to -2C.

The centre of the high pressure system over New Zealand, which was currently over the South Island, would move over the North Island tonight.

Honey the deer in Kelly Riddell's frosty paddock at her home in Lake Rotoma, Bay of Plenty. Photo / Kelly Riddell
Honey the deer in Kelly Riddell's frosty paddock at her home in Lake Rotoma, Bay of Plenty. Photo / Kelly Riddell

"Basically that means that the North Island is going to have another frosty night again tonight in many areas, and the South Island will too although there will be a developing nor'wester there so the frost may not be quite so heavy."

There are also heavy frosts around Rotorua and Taranaki, which are both down to -3C, about 7.30am.

Brrrrr

A video posted by nzben (@nzben) on


Even Northland is down to -2C, with widespread frosts in sheltered inland areas.
Kaitaia in the Far North was on just 1C at 7.20am.

Mr Duncan said more heavy frosts can be expected tonight, especially in the North Island as the centre of the high - currently over the South Island - slid northwards."

Sunrise over Arrowtown. Photo / Karen Chappell
Sunrise over Arrowtown. Photo / Karen Chappell

"But frosts may not be quite so heavy in some southern areas due to more cloud and a breeze developing overnight in some areas," he said.

Five ways to keep warm

1. Have a hot shower
Just a quick one, so as not to hike up your power bill. Dry yourself extra well (use a hairdryer if necessary). If you don't have immediate access to a shower, find a nice bathroom somewhere, wash your hands with warm water then dry them under the blow dryer.

2. Wear warm clothes
Shorts and a t-shirt will keep you warm, but thermal underwear and a woollen pea coat will keep you warmer. Pop on a beanie or a felt hat to keep the heat in. Gloves will help too - fingerless gloves are good if you have a touchscreen phone and would like to send your mates snapchats showing how warm you are.

3. Find a person to snuggle
Body heat is good. Combine body heat by sitting next to another person - be it your mum, your significant other your child or someone who has agreed to let you snuggle them.

4. Get a cat or a dog
If you do not have a person readily available for snuggles, cats and/or dogs can be good. Be sure to check animal for fleas, ringworm, etc first. If the pet does not belong to you, check with its owner first.

5. Netflix and chill
This may sound misleading, but chilling does not necessarily mean staying cold in modern day vernacular. For example, you can Netflix and chill on the couch with a warm blanket (preferably wool), in bed, or even at work. Variations on Netflix and chill could include (but are not limited to) TV and chill, Lightbox and chill, DVD and chill and read a book and chill. Please be wary though - if someone asks you to Netflix and chill with them, they may not only want to watch movies or tv shows. Seek clarification before agreeing to Netflix and chill with anyone.

Your chilly weekend weather

Whangarei
Today: Sunny with light winds. High 15C, low 4C
Tomorrow: Cloud increasing, afternoon rain and northerlies. High 17C, low 9C

Auckland
Today: Sunny with light winds. High 13C, low 6C
Tomorrow: Fine at first, cloud increasing later and northeasterlies. High 15C, low 9C

Hamilton
Today: Morning frosts and patchy fog, then fine. Light winds. High 12C, low -1C
Tomorrow: Long sunny spells, morning frosts. Light winds. High 12C, low 3C

Tauranga
Today: Sunny with southwest breezes. High 12C, low 3C
Tomorrow: Cloudy periods developing. Light winds. High 13C, low 5C

Wellington
Today: Fine with northerlies. High 14C, low 9C
Tomorrow: Long sunny spells. Northerly winds. High 14C, low 11C

Christchurch
Today: A frosty start to a fine winter's day. Northerly breezes. High 12C, low 1C
Tomorrow: Long sunny spells, morning frosts. Northerlies. High 14C, low 3C

Dunedin
Today: Fine but frosty start, then cloud increasing, with a few spots of rain. Northwesterlies. High 12C, low 6C
Tomorrow: Early showers, then mainly fine. Northerlies. High 14C, low 6C

(Source: MetService)

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- NZ Herald

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