Author Topic: New Zealand Weather Summary for 1932  (Read 539 times)

Offline Sheldybett

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New Zealand Weather Summary for 1932
« on: June 06, 2019, 06:20:08 PM »

January.—A stormy month with frequent strong northerly or north-westerly winds. Temperatures were much below normal, especially in western districts. Two frosts, occurring on the 2nd and 31st respectively, caused considerable damage. The first was confined to the South Island, while the second extended to parts of the North Island also. Rainfall was very heavy on the west coast of the South Island and in most of Otago, but elsewhere was below average. In the North Island the deficit amounted to about 50 per cent.

February.—Prior to the 8th many parts of the country cast of the main ranges had been suffering from a rain shortage of a persistence and severity unusual in New Zealand. But between the 7th and the 22nd the weather was controlled by a remarkable series of cyclones which brought copious rains to all districts. Heavy falls were experienced in the eastern parts of the North Island on almost every day throughout this period. By the 10th a record flood had been produced on the Poverty Bay flats. During the night of the 19th extremely heavy local rains occurred between Hampden and Timaru, where, also, floods of record dimensions were experienced. On the 20th a most unusually heavy and general rain occurred, large areas recording over 2 in. For the month as a whole the country must have averaged one and a half times the normal rainfall. The Auckland District, the Coromandel Peninsula, eastern districts of the North Island from East Cape to Cook Strait, and the area in South Canterbury and North Otago already referred to averaged more than twice the normal for February, while some stations had three or four times that amount. The weather was very dull and humid generally during the rainy period mentioned, so that the amount of sunshine recorded during the month was much below average. Temperatures were, on the whole, on the cold side, but the departures from normal were not large.

March.— Except in the far North, and between Hawke's Bay and East Cape, a very dry month. Temperatures were again somewhat below normal at most places, but the absence of strong winds prevented this from causing any discomfort. Anticyclonic weather was the rule, the highest pressures being experienced in the South. There was thus a prevalence of south-easterly winds. The only general rains were caused by a cyclone which crossed the southern portion of the South Island on the 23rd.

April.—Mild and humid, strong winds again being remarkable for their absence. Except in the southern Wairarapa rainfall was generally above normal. Although the condition of pastures had improved considerably by the end of the month, some of the eastern districts of the South Island had not completely recovered from the preceding long periods of deficient rainfall. The remainder of the country was in excellent condition. A tropical cyclone developed in the New Hebrides on the 25th, and passed down the east coast of New Zealand in the closing days of the month. Very heavy rains resulted, high floods being experienced in Hawke's Bay.

May.—After the first few days May, though sunny, was dry, cool, and windy. It was at about the end of the first week that atmospheric phenomena due to volcanic ash transported from Chile were first noted. Many brilliant sunsets were observed. A severe storm occurred between the 9th and 14th. Thunderstorms and heavy rains occurred at many places. South Canterbury suffered from high floods, and in the Mackenzie country there was a heavy snowfall. Southerly winds predominated during the month, and many frosts were recorded. The 25th was a particularly bitter day. A southerly gale blew, and many thunder and hail storms were experienced.

At the end of the month stock were reported to be in good condition and feed plentiful in most districts.

June.—The principal feature was the prevalence of boisterous westerly or south-westerly winds in the second half. Thunder, hail, and heavy rain were of frequent occurrence in western districts. The Manawatu and neighbouring rivers were in flood for several days. Small tornadoes were experienced at Whakatane and Marton respectively. There were heavy falls of snow on the high levels. Falls occurred also in the eastern and southern portions of the South Island, but were only light. Rainfall was above normal in the western districts of both Islands and also in Southland. Most of the remainder of the country had less than half the average.

July.—Possibly the driest July experienced during the past seventy years. Temperatures were much below average also, but there was abundant sunshine and little wind. The growth of grass was checked, but winter work on the farms was carried out under favourable conditions. Strong southerly winds and very rough seas were experienced to the east of New Zealand.

August.—Another cold, dry, and sunny month. Many severe frosts were again recorded. Cattle were experiencing a shortage of feed in many districts, but sheep appeared to be doing well. In connection with a cyclone which passed New Zealand to the northward, southerly gales blew from the afternoon of the 2nd to the evening of the 6th. Snow or hail fell at many places. On the 5th the weather was especially severe. Snow was recorded over the greater part of the South Island and all the interior and the high levels of the North. In the Wairarapa snow commenced on the night of the 3rd, and did not cease finally until the 6th. The total fall was the heaviest since 1918. In the last three days of the month an unusual storm brought torrential rains to the southern portion of the Wellington Province and adjacent parts of Cloudy Bay and the Marlborough Sounds and to parts of Taranaki. Severe floods occurred in the Wairarapa and Manawatu districts. From Masterton to Lake Wairarapa it was said to be the worst flood for twenty years, and losses of stock round the lake were heavy.

September.—Though the third month in succession with rainfall below normal, and, indeed, the period was probably the driest for the time of year for which records are available, stock and pastures were reported to be in good condition. Farm work was well advanced, and an excellent lambing season was experienced. On the east coast the weather was dull and cold, but on the west both temperature and sunshine were above normal. Pressure was unusually high in the New Zealand area and easterly winds prevailed.

October.—A particularly favourable spring month. Temperatures were mild and good rainfalls were experienced in the districts where they were most needed. These rains, following on a succession of dry cold months, led to a phenomenal growth of vegetation. Stock developed splendid condition and dairy yields increased remarkably. By this time no trace of the volcanic ash was discernible in the atmosphere.

November.—A return to dry weather. Most of the North Island bad less than half the normal rainfall, many places even having less than 20 per cent. In the South Island the deficits were not important on the West Coast, and in South Canterbury heavy local downpours, often accompanied by thunder, resulted in the average being exceeded. Elsewhere conditions were no better than in the North Island. Temperatures differed little from the normal, and there was an abundance of bright sunshine. North-westerly winds prevailed and were often strong. Though the shortage of rain checked the growth of grass, feed for stock was probably never more plentiful in New Zealand.

December.—The first half of the month was cool and rather stormy, but during the second cloudy, sultry, humid, and quiet weather prevailed. The Auckland and Coromandel Peninsulas, the west coast of the South Island, and most of Otago and Southland had rainfalls approximating to the average. In South Canterbury and about Oamaru, where humid conditions with frequent local rains and thunderstorms were experienced, the normal was exceeded. Elsewhere a very marked shortage again occurred. Though not quite so favourable as in November, conditions on farm lands were still very good.

Year.— The total rainfall for the year was generally above the average east of a line joining Napier to Cape Runaway, but this was due largely to the heavy rains in February. Scattered places elsewhere, especially in South Canterbury. also had more than the average. For the Dominion as a whole, however, the year was a very dry one. Indeed. 1932 was the third year in succession in which the average rainfall over the country has been below normal, and at many places each of the three has been very dry. Nevertheless, the average yield from the soil in 1932 was again excellent.

The 1932 season was particularly favourable for almost all branches of agricultural activity, owing to the combined effects of the excellent mild rains in February, April, and October and a cold, dry, but relatively calm and sunny winter.

Temperatures were, on the whole, below normal, but not nearly so much so as in the two years preceding. The low temperatures in winter may have been due to the presence in the upper atmosphere of the volcanic ash ejected from the Chilean volcanoes on the 10th April. Sunshine totalled, for the most part, less than usual in eastern districts, but elsewhere the reverse was the case.



Offline Rwood

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Re: New Zealand Weather Summary for 1932
« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2019, 08:53:25 PM »
A rather cold year, and also one of the driest. Well above average sunshine in some areas.

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