Though the weather on the Otago Central Rail Trail is most often dry and sunny, it's good practice to be prepared for all weather conditions at all times. New Zealand band Crowded House were right in saying that New Zealand offers four seasons in one day!
*Remember that New Zealand's sun is very strong. Be sure to wear and carry plenty of sunscreen, regardless of the season.
The weather during spring is often quite changeable. Spring days can be filled with fine, sunny weather and then a sudden change can bring winds, showers and even the occasional snowfall. Temperatures range from -3 to 20 degrees Celcius.
In summer, daytime temperatures can reach the mid 30’s, however as it's mostly a dry heat, cycling the Otago Central Rail Trail is still comfortable. You'll also delight in long daylight hours. Expect cooler nights with temperatures dropping to the low teens at times.
The colourful leaves in the orchards and vineyards are enjoyed on crisp, warm, and calm autumn days in Central Otago. Temperatures can reach the mid-twenties, but drop to just below zero Celcius at night, so expect frosty mornings.
Though winter days in Central Otago are often frosty and cold, the Otago Central Rail Trail is still cyclable — and stunning. In fact, it's possibly the most picturesque time of year to experience the Trail. Snow-capped mountains sparkle against clear skies on these mostly-sunny days. While nights can reach below zero degrees Celcius, daytime highs are often in the mid-teens.