Wind and rain set to continue until Christmas as wintry weather hangs on.

Summer is running six weeks late this year and an unsettled Christmas is on the cards for some.

Yesterday, heavy rain and gales in the upper North Island forced Aucklanders to trade in their sunglasses for umbrellas, leaving many wondering where summer had gone.

The wild weather blew a tree on to a house in Wellsford, causing minor damage, and prompted a warning for motorists to take care as State Highway 1 north of Auckland flooded.

Meteorologist Georgina Griffiths of MetService said the poor weather could be due to the fact winter was delayed this year.


"We are running six weeks late, effectively," she said. "We started winter really late. It was beautiful autumn and it carried on sunny ... It was dry and warm and we had the warmest June ever, nationally.

"We went into winter late and it just seems we are going to exit winter late."

Ms Griffiths said Auckland's weather was not unusual for this time of year. The conditions were brought on by a low in the Tasman Sea. Most of the north of the country had been very dry before Auckland's stint of wet weather over the weekend.

"Believe it or not, there hasn't been much December rain until this big event. It has come in one big fell swoop."

Ms Griffiths said that while the rainfall had been fairly normal for December, temperatures had been much cooler than usual.

"The first 10 days of December remained cold. We really have only just started to warm up while we have this tropical low coming down, bringing some warmer air with it."

Although Kiwis were itching for summer sun, they might have to wait just a little longer, Ms Griffiths said.

"There will be one more wet week to come before Christmas."


WeatherWatch head analyst Philip Duncan said a low-pressure system was expected to cross the country in the lead-up to Christmas, bringing with it wind and rain.

However, as it got closer to Christmas Day, a high would roll in from the Tasman Sea. "While we can't give an exact forecast for Christmas Day, we can tell you that on December 25 a low will be departing the country and a high should be moving in."

He said this meant for some it would be dry, and for others it would be unsettled.

MetService would not comment on Christmas Day weather because it did not yet have a computer forecast.

Yesterday's bad weather forced the cancellation of Hamilton's Christmas Parade and Hastings' Christmas in the Park event.