Northland is bracing for a downpour on Thursday, with MetService warning of severe rainfall in the evening.
The national forecaster has issued an orange heavy rain warning that extends from Cape Reinga to Topuni.
Between 100mm and 130mm of rain is expected in Te Tai Tokerau, especially in the east and north, with thunderstorms possible.
Peak rates of 10mm to 20mm per hour are expected during Friday morning and afternoon.
The warning period runs from 10pm Thursday to 10pm Friday, but MetService said showers will still be expected throughout the weekend.
At 10am on Thursday, MetService added heavy rain warnings over the Coromandel Pensinsula from 10am Friday, and western Bay of Plenty from 4pm Friday, until Saturday January 28.
There are also heavy rain watches for northern parts of Auckland, which are also facing a strong wind watch, and Mt Taranaki.
Once the heavy rain eases, showers should be expected throughout the weekend.
The next update is due at 9pm on Thursday.
The Kaeo River, which threatens to flood State Highway 10 in the wrong conditions, shows the awa was still far from spilling out on Thursday morning.
The rainy end to January is brought courtesy of a “subtropical low”, which may also rain heavily on Auckland and Coromandel Peninsula from Friday to Saturday, and western Bay of Plenty on Saturday.
MetService Meteorologist Dan Corrigan said the low has already developed as forecasted and is currently northwest of the top of Northland.
Throughout Thursday it will head closer to Aotearoa and by 10pm at least, those heavy rains will descend.
“More moderate rain is expected to develop earlier in the day starting in the Far North and moving south as the system move southwards,” he explained.
Corrigan said after a west start to the year, this rain is likely to have a serious impact on the region.
Northland has already been hit by two heavy rain events so far in 2023: a storm on January 3 to 5 resulted in two people dying after hitting a downed tree.
For the rest of the country, including Auckland which will celebrate its anniversary weekend this weekend, it will be a warm and muggy couple of days.