First snow in downtown Auckland in 72 years

16 Aug 11 – Heavy snow is still expected overnight in many areas, including Wellington and Christchurch.

The polar blast is making life difficult for farmers but they are coping, despite some having to work their stock in thick snow for the first time, Federated Farmers adverse events spokesman David Rose says.

“It’s very unusual for a storm to affect absolutely the whole country. In some areas, particularly in the lower North Island, farmers wouldn’t have had to deal with a weather event like this before,” he said.

In some regions, particularly Canterbury and Wairarapa, farmers would be hoping the snow cleared before it turned to ice, which would make it impossible for stock to graze.

Climate scientist Georgina Griffiths of the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research said yesterday was the coldest day ever recorded in Auckland. The temperature got up to only 8.2C – compared with the previous lowest high of 8.7C, on July 4, 1996.

The last time snow settled on the ground in the city was 1939. It fell to ground level at the airport in 1976.

Thanks to Martin Hoer for this link

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