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'Auckland is struggling to get past 12 or 13. That's a proper August' - Cold air from Antarctic keeping it chilly

A bitterly cold southerly may be sweeping across New Zealand, but there's a pleasant surprise for snow-seekers.

Cardrona Alpine Resort says the recent snowfall means they'll be open for business this Saturday and Sunday as a "sneak peek" before the season officially begins on June 16.

"The last couple of weeks have been sensational, we've had snowfall after snowfall," Cardrona general manager Bridget Legnavsky says.

It’s time to pull on the thermals and crank up the heater. Source: 1 NEWS

1 NEWS meteorologist Dan Corbett says cold air from the Antarctic ice shelf has meant a chilly start to the week for many.

"Today we've been seeing highs across the country struggling - in Queenstown for instance - to get above six or seven degrees.

"Auckland is struggling to get past 12 or 13. That's a proper August."

Wellington experienced overnight winds of 120km per hour, with hail peppering the city this morning.

And there's a warning that black ice could cover the likes of the Desert Rd, Central Plateau, and the east of the South Island tomorrow.

"As soon as the winds drop out and the temperatures drop away tonight below freezing, if there's leftover moisture on the ground, those can be those tricky little spots," Corbett says.

Cardrona general manager Bridget Legnavsky says she's never seen so much snow in May. Source: 1 NEWS