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End of New Zealand's golden weather as heavy rain, gale force winds set to sweep in

A period of heavy rain and gale force winds is expected for parts of the country this week.

A front, proceeded by strong northwesterlies, is forecast to move north across the South Island today, before sweeping through the North Island tomorrow, according to MetService. The front is set to bring periods of heavy rain, mainly affecting the western districts.

A heavy rain warning is in place for the ranges of Buller north of Westport and the Tararua Range, where rain is expected to hit hardest.

A heavy rain watch remains in place for Westland, the remainder of Buller, Nelson west of Motueka, Mount Taranaki, the central North Island high country, the eastern ranges of Bay of Plenty and the ranges of Gisborne.

Meanwhile, a strong wind watch is in place for the Canterbury high country and north of Mount Cook, with northwest winds potentially approaching severe gales in exposed areas at times, the meteorological service said.

People have been advised to stay up to date with the latest forecasts on the MetService website. 

Source: istock.com