Surface tension

Water is an amazing substance. It has many properties that have a big impact on our lives and, I think, are quite useful for us to know about. One of these is the property of surface tension, which water shares with other less prevalent liquids.

Wellington Rainbow

With a superb view over Wellington and the harbour from the MetService building in Kelburn, we're often (and quite appropriately) treated to some fantastic weather related vistas. Here's a little sample, snapped on Monday 26 October as a few light showers passed over the city in a northerly flow late afternoon.

Wellington rainbow

Puysegur Point Storms

Years ago, I heard the wife of a lighthouse keeper talking on the radio about the weather at Puysegur Point, on the south coast of Fiordland, where she and her husband had been stationed for a time. Six months or so before they arrived there, a fishing boat had gone down in a storm with all hands. One day, as she walked along the black stony beach, something white caught her eye. Bending over, she picked up a single human tooth.

Early October Snow

The snow that closed the Desert Road and Napier-Taupo Road on Sun-Mon-Tue 4-5-6th  October 2009 was unseasonable.  It was caused by a low pressure system deepening over the area at the same time as a cold southerly flow arrived, resulting in moist air being cooled from below in a cauldron of lowering pressure.  This produced an unusually heavy amount of snow over a wide area.

The weather map for noon on Sunday shows the low pressure system forming over the Central North Island