New Zealanders may have to pack their umbrellas for the upcoming long weekend.
Wet and windy weather has been forecast for much of the country on Saturday, MetService chief forecaster Peter Kreft says.
But on Sunday the wild weather should settle down for most, with strong westerlies moving away from the country.
"Monday is still a bit far off to be too definitive, but is looking dry for most areas to begin with,'' Mr Kreft said.
"However, there is the chance of rain finding its way into northern and western areas of the North Island again late in the day.''
In the lead-up to the weekend severe gales were expected to blast the country from inland Canterbury to Hawkes Bay from today through to tomorrow.
Gales would also affect much of the North Island tomorrow, Mr Kreft said.
Until early tomorrow heavy rain was expected to fall on the West Coast and in the headwaters of Otago and Canterbury lakes and rivers.