Welcome to Stewart Island & Sails Ashore +64 3 219 1151 tait@sailsashore.co.nz

Stewart Island Drought

There is an old Stewart Islanders definition of a drought …. 5 days without much rain,

So having around 3.5 mm in the last 20 days November surely qualifies. And the temperatures have been high as well, with wall to wall blue skies after some occasional morning high cloud burnt off. And little in the way of wind just as the icing on the cake.

A few days ago I set up a watering hose in our vegetable garden, something I would never have thought I would need to do, as apart from watering in new plants we generally get more than enough rain to do the job.  Cracks are starting to appear behind retaining walls, and some of our lawn is starting to brown off, which we don’t expect to happen until well into January, if at all.

Carting Water

I have noticed some folk carting water, so presumably their tanks are getting down. And low tanks comes with the added issue of lowering water quality. At Sails Ashore we have over 100,000 litres storage, and in addition we micro filter and UV treat all our water, so I guess we won’t have any issues.  But we don’t waste water either.

Some Rain Forecast

We watch the METVUW site for our forecasts, it it is indicating a fair possibility for a few hours on Monday afternoon and evening, and maybe a short burst next Saturday. Fingers Crossed !!! but we have seen this before this spring and summer, and it’s all just come to not much or nothing.




Sails Tours, Stewart Island
Unseasonably High Temperatures
I’m typing this at 0720, and our outside temperature is 17.6 deg

This last months rain

Sails Ashore, Stewart Island
Lawn starting to brown off

Sails Ashore, Stewart Island
Cracks appearing


Sails Ashore, Stewart Island
But with a bit of watering our vegetable garden is loving this hot weather

Sea Temperatures High as Well

Looking at all this I wondered just what sea temperatures might be, and so went down to Golden Bay and was astonished to find it sitting at around 16.5 deg C. Way way higher than I would expect. So calibrated the thermometer (Ice water and then boiling water) and it was maybe .5 deg adrift. I also had a look at the satellite oceanic temperatures and they were suggesting around 14.5/15 deg C.

Generally Paterson Inlet is a deg or so higher then open water on an outgoing tide in hot weather, so astonishing as it is I guess it is correct. Normally I wouldn’t expect water temps to get all that close to that in February, let alone the 31st November.