It can be hard to imagine what a surface chart looks like in the real world so we have developed an animation to help.
These three animations to the right show a front passing over the central North Island. There are three views; the top one is from New Plymouth, the second shows the Palmerston North perspective, and the bottom shows it from Napier. You will see three perspectives from each location; from ground level, from altitude and from above.
These are not designed to be an accurate depiction of a front passing, but to give a general idea about how it looks and the weather to expect with the passage of a cold front. You will clearly see that each area experiences the front quite differently, because the conditions are altered by the surrounding terrain. This is true for all fronts passing over New Zealand — terrain affects the weather.