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Little Wanganui Water Temperature and Wetsuit Guide

(West Coast South Island, New Zealand)

Today's Little Wanganui sea temperature is 18.0 °C.

Statistics for 23 Mar (1981–2005) – mean: 17.0 °C, range: 14.5 °C to 18.5 °C

The water temperature (18 °C) at Little Wanganui is relatively warm. If the sun does come out as forecast, it should feel warm enough to surf in a summer wetsuit. Effective air temperature of 16 °C.

New Zealand Sea Water Temperature

Map of current New Zealand
Surface Water Temperatures
based on measurements from oceanographic satellites
New Zealand Water Temperature Anomaly

Map of current New Zealand
Sea Water Temperature Anomalies

(compared with long term averages
at this time of year)

(click thumbnails to expand)

Below is a graph of Historical Sea Surface Temperature for Little Wanganui. This has been derived from analysis of two decades of oceanographic satellite measurements of nearby open water. We have calculated the average water temperature variation around the year as well as the extremes that have been observed on each date.

Little Wanganui Water Temperature Graph

All of the graphs for the surf breaks presented on are on the same scale to enable comparison between locations around the world.

Little Wanganui water temperatures peak in the range 16 to 20°C (61 to 68°F) on around the 7th of February and are at their minimum on about the 9th of August, in the range 12 to 14°C (54 to 57°F). The highest Little Wanganui water temperatures in the first part of February require something like a 3/2mm fully sealed wetsuit. The minimum water temperatures at Little Wanganui in early to mid August are ideally suited to a 4/3mm wetsuit + 3mm boots, although a 5/3mm wetsuit may be preferable for longer sessions and cold windy days.

Actual sea surface water temperatures close to shore at Little Wanganui can vary by several degrees compared with these open water averages. This is especially true after heavy rain, close to river mouths or after long periods of strong offshore winds. Offshore winds cause colder deep water to replace surface water that has been warmed by the sun. Air temperature, wind-chill and sunshine should also be considered before deciding on the kind of wetsuit needed to stay warm when surfing at Little Wanganui. Refer to our detailed weather forecasts for this information.