Most of the country can expect dreary winter weather this weekend, and people in the South are potentially waking up to snow after severe overnight storms.
Forecaster MetService had earlier placed overnight severe wind and thunderstorm weather watches on much of the South Island and parts of the lower North Island.
That led the Department of Conservation to warn outdoor lovers to stay inside, especially those planning trips to the South Island's big mountains.
"For the South Island, heavy rain, thunderstorms, snow and wind is forecast," DoC tweeted.
"Coupled with cold temperatures, this will make for unsafe travel conditions, particularly in the back country and high elevations."
The rain, storms and snow are blowing in from the Tasman Sea - having hit the West Coast yesterday - before pushing north into the west and central parts of the North Island.
"From Taranaki to Wellington, heavy showers and thunderstorms are expected overnight into Saturday. It's not looking like the best weekend to be outdoors," DoC said yesterday.
Aucklanders will also need to don rain jackets this weekend as heavy showers are possible on Saturday and Sunday.
That includes possible thunderstorms this morning as the city heads for a high of 17C.
Further north, Whangārei can expect bleak and rainy weekend weather, with highs of 19C on Saturday and 18C on Sunday.
Thunderstorms are also possible in Hamilton as it heads for a high of 16C today and 15C tomorrow, while in Tauranga rain is also expected, though not as heavy.
Napier will be a rare bright spot with fine but gusty Saturday weather and a high of 19C, followed by a partly cloudy Sunday with a high of 18C.
Wellington residents, on the other hand, can expect much worse.
MetService has the city under a severe thunderstorm watch until 6am today, and gales are tipped to gust up to 120km/h.
The stormy weather is expected to give way to a fine afternoon with a high of 14C, however, before possible thunderstorms return on Sunday for a top of 14C, MetService says.
Christchurch will also be shielded from much of the worst of the weather as the storms barrel into the South Island's West Coast.
Residents can expect a mainly fine Saturday morning heading to a top of 13C, before Sunday brings more rain and a top of 14C.
Queenstown - which had a severe thunderstorm and heavy snowfall watch yesterday - can expect more possible storms this morning and snow showers that should clear in the evening as the city reaches a top of 6C.
Rain and possible snow in the hills are expected on Sunday.
Across the South Island, motorists are warned that snow could fall on the high mountain pass roads during the weekend.