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In photos: New Zealand shivers through a classic winter storm

Storm force winds were blowing through Cook Strait, with an average wind speed of 110kmh and gusts to 140kmh being recorded at Brothers Island.

Winter hits NZ like a tonne of bricks - shutting roads and making travel both treacherous and spectacular.

A whiteout on the Napier-Taupo Road entering Hawke's Bay.

Snow, the ocean, and a rainbow in one shot on the Port Hills in Christchurch on Wednesday.

Christchurch brothers Riley Tammett, 10, and Rocco, 8, enjoy Burke's Pass, South Canterbury.

A rugby tussle, of sorts, in Sheffield snow.

Millie the dog gets her first taste of snow.

The alpine town of Arthur's Pass is a winter wonderland.

Snow at Arthur's Pass.

Jess Fairhall with dog Zeus enjoy a walk in the snow in Dunedin.

Methven's blanketed in snow.

Ursula Bedggood, middle, made the trip to Sheffield with children Alexander, left, and Elisabeth for some snow fun.

Darfield's streets are covered in snow.

Ultramarathon runner Paul Stevens took this photo in the Tararua Ranges this morning between Rocky Lookout and Mountain House on the foothills of Mt Holdsworth.

The snow's well and truly arrived near Taihape.

Cattle during heavy snow in a paddock outside Methven.

A winter wonderland at Burkes Pass, South Canterbury.

Deer play in the icy conditions near Methven.

A man, a boy and their dog walk through snow in Sheffield, Canterbury.

Snow is causing trouble for motorists in Canterbury and across the South Island.

Cold comfort for builders working on this Te Anau house.

KiwiRail's Tranz Alpine train turns into the polar express through Sheffield, Canterbury.

The snow in Fairlie, South Canterbury on Wednesday morning.

A truck rumbles through the Lewis Pass, SH7, on Wednesday.

Beau and his granddad, Mick, take a walk in the snow in Oxford.

Mahinerangi, inland from Dunedin, was an Instagrammer's paradise.

It was a glorious start to the day in Birchwood, near Ohai.

Te Haroto marae, at the summit of the Napier-Taupo Road, with snow falling steadily.

Charlie the lab-cross plays in the snow with Ben the greyhound in Oxford, North Canterbury.

Wellingtonians were greeted by strong winds and cool temperatures on Wednesday morning as the cold front from the South Island moved north.

The Interislander Ferry heads out from Wellington into heaving seas, en route to Picton. Were you on a Cook Strait ferry during the storm? Email us at

Hardy passengers on the Interislander watch the ferry cut through the swell in the Cook Strait.

Canines check out the powder in Centre Bush, Southland.

Springfield sheep munch on grass.

Siblings Blake, 9, and Brianna Taylor, 11, take part in snowball warfare in Springfield.

This woman didn't let a bit of snow stop her from exploring Springfield, Canterbury.

Snow made driving along the road between Gore and Winton a challenge.

At least one car didn't escape unscathed in Burkes Pass.

Snow falls thick and fast on the outskirts of Ohakune.

Rural Post still gets through the snow-covered Te Tipua hills.

A picture-perfect scene in Swannanoa in North Canterbury.

A kea plods through the powder at Arthur's Pass.

One-year-old Isobel gets her first snow experience in Ohakune, which wouldn't have been complete without the breakfast staple of peanut butter on toast.

Do you want to build a snowman? Well, someone beat you to it. Aaminah Ahmed took this shot in National Park during a family road trip from Palmerston North back to Auckland.

A hardy soul in Wellington dares to go outdoors with an umbrella.

People wait west of Springfield for SH73 to reopen.

A roadblock west of Springfield on SH73 on Wednesday.

Snow reaches sea level in Dunedin.

Travellers fit chains to their vehicles in Fairlie before heading on their way.

A very icy Lewis Pass, which was closed to traffic due to the snow.

Road crews clear snow through the Lewis Pass.

After a fall of snow, Lake Te Anau merges with the land, giving the impression this yacht has been left high and dry.

Loki the white shepherd enjoying his first snow at work in Gore.

The chilly scene from Tekapo.

A ghostly image from Arthur's Pass.

Snow forced the closure of State Highway 7, the Lewis Pass. (file photo).

Snowed in at Arthur's Pass, it was the perfect chance to do a bit of exploring.

A striking contrast of colours at Arthur's Pass.

Harry Oliver jumps in the bath at Porters Alpine Lodge.

Kit Oliver takes his toboggan out for a spin at Porters Alpine Lodge.

The view in Queenstown.

The dubious job of fitting chains to cope with the icy conditions, pictured near Tekapo.

Taking a stroll in amid the snowflakes in Tekapo.

Dunedin, wearing its winter coat.

Making the most of the snow in Dunedin.

A snowy scene at Fairlight.

Waikaka, Southland, just as another slurry was arriving.

Gore wakes up in a bluish hue.

Overnight snow in Te Anau will make hard work for posties.

The wintry scene in Otago.

Summerhill in North Canterbury is cloaked in snow.

Cars get towed along Stuart St in Dunedin.

It's a white out around the lake at Hanmer Springs.

Bagel the beagle takes a pause from frolicking in the snow at Hanmer Springs.

Getting proof of the snow in central Queenstown.

Almost 3 inches (7cm) had fallen in Brockville, Dunedin, Peter Frew reported.

A chilly Lawrence police station on Wednesday morning.

Hanmer Springs takes on an Arctic look.

A snowy Tekapo on Wednesday morning.

Kowai Bush looked cold as charity at 8am on Wednesday.

The Kaikorai Valley in Dunedin, looking a little slushy.

Snow was falling in Fernhill, Queenstown early on Wednesday morning.

Dozens of cars were stuck on Dunedin's Stuart St as snow fell to sea level in the city.

With the skifield closed, Charlie and Louis Oliver get amongst the deep snow at Porters Alpine Lodge.

Snow was falling in Fernhill, Queenstown early on Wednesday morning.

The Mt Alford angus in Methven were keeping close for warmth.

Dunedin's Saddle Hill was -2 degrees Celsius at 7.30am on Wednesday.

Springfield wakes up to several inches of powder.

Flying in a blizzard en route from Hokitika to Christchurch.

Milton the dog was keen to get home from the paper round in Dunedin on Wednesday morning.

Arrowtown wakes to a freezing morning.

Snow falls in Fairlie on Tuesday afternoon. John Wilson from Downer explains to drivers the road is closed.

Snow across the South Island has blocked mountain pass roads delaying or preventing delivery of The Press and Marlborough Express to some parts of the south.

Snow falls at Castle Hill in Canterbury on Tuesday night.

Snow was falling thick and fast in Tekapo on Tuesday.

Snow was falling in Dunedin as a band of freezing weather moved up the country.

A layer of snow covers the ground while light sleet falls early on Wednesday morning in Frankton, Queenstown.

Dunedin City Council warned the city's residents on Wednesday morning of widespread snow, saying road travel should be avoided where possible.