A photograph taken from space shows an extremely parched Hawke's Bay after several months of near drought conditions.
The photo was taken by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on February 8 from the International Space Station, providing a graphic illustration of the arid land around Napier and Hastings.
Mr Hadfield posted the photo on his Twitter account, in between shots of Mount Taranaki and Lake Taupo, with the accompanying caption: "Napier on Hawke's Bay, New Zealand. Rugged land, farms, rivers, city and the sea."
While some rain is expected in Hawke's Bay over the coming week, it is unlikely to be substantial.
Much of New Zealand is expected to cool down this week but Hawke's Bay highs will continue to sit in the mid 20s despite "hit and miss" bits of rain.
Metservice meteorologist Daniel Corbett said although there were a couple of cold fronts moving north, they would lose much of their potency by the time they reached Hawke's Bay.
"It's more hit and miss showers as opposed to a good, good steady rain," he said. "Showers over the next couple of days but nothing substantial. Nothing really chilly. To be honest, the real cold air, the real cooler air, is down south."
Temperatures would not be affected too much by the rain, which he expected would be "not a heck of a lot, in all the places we need it".
Overnight temperatures would linger in the mid teens.
Federated Farmers president and Hawke's Bay farmer Bruce Wills said the slight rains expected were better than nothing but the farmers' "balance sheets" were being affected.
"Unfortunately it won't be much, there's no question that Hawke's Bay is very, very dry," he said. "It's not a drought yet, but it's a good old, traditional, East Coast February."
Despite the continuing heat, farmers had a brief respite last week.
"That little bit of rain last week on Tuesday just gave farmers a bit of hope."
Mr Wills said he had just sold some of his own stock three or four kilograms lighter than had he sold them a month later.
"The downside is this will affect balance sheets," he said.
"What Hawke's Bay needs is an easterly. They come in from the east, they generally hang around for three, four days, it's constant, fairly light, but fairly warm rain.
"A good easterly is what Hawke's Bay farmers will be wishing for."