Weather: Wild Wednesday to bring rain, strong winds and snow to the country

While Kiwis outside Auckland are celebrating their first morning in level 2, many might find themselves sticking indoors a tad longer as rain, strong winds and even snow hits parts of the country.

The cold change coming out of the Southern Ocean will hit in two surges - today and Friday - forecaster WeatherWatch said.

"It's a "spring blast" with gales, heavy snow and strong winds," WeatherWatch's Philip Duncan said.

That meant rain is expected for the southwest of the South Island, but it's not thought to stick around for the whole day.

The rain then will move to the North Island bringing a wet morning for most.

MetService forecaster Paul Ngamanu said Aucklanders should expect some showers starting mid-morning.

There will be some heavy periods of rain but no rain warnings are in place.

Gale force winds are also in store for the City of Sails with winds reaching gusts of 90km/h.

"We've got another front that's bringing southwest gales to Auckland," Ngamanu said.

A strong wind warning has been issued for Auckland, Great Barrier Island, Coromandel Peninsula and Waikato north of Hamilton. The warning is expected to lift at 10am.

Forecasters are predicting the weather this week will be messy because of a number of warm and cold fronts embedded in the system.

With ski fields expected to open today, those wanting to hit the slopes are in for some good news.

Crown Rage Road covered in snow earlier this year after a cold Antarctic blast hit the region. Photo / George Heard

A number of snowfall warnings are also in place for roads across the South Island and central North Island this morning.

Fresh snow in Arthurs Pass this morning. Photo / Supplied

"All of the high passes are going to be affected by this snow," Ngamanu said.

Milford road can expect the most snow with 10-15cm to settle on the road above 800 metres. Only 2-4cm is expected to settle on Crown Range Rd.

And 1-3cm is expected to settle on Lindis Pass and Haast Pass.

Snowfall on Lewis Pass is expected to affect higher parts of the road early this morning and from 11am to 2pm, 1cm may settle on the road.

About 2-4cm is expected to settle near the summit of Desert Rd.

A heavy snow watch has also been issued for Fiordland south of Te Anau but is expected to lift at 10am.

Snow is expected down to 200m, with heavy falls above 400m.

However frosty temperatures aren't anticipated for the South Island.

Cooler temperatures are expected for most of the country with top temperatures reaching the low teens.

Ngamanu said a few showers are in store for the upper half of the North Island but nothing heavy.

Those in the capital can expect a few morning showers alongside southerly winds.


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