Gisborne tipped to bear brunt of Cyclone Cody as North Island braces for impact

Preparations are underway for Cyclone Cody, predicted to hit the North Island's east coast at the end of this week and into early next week.

Gisborne is expected to bear the biggest brunt of it and summer holidaymakers in the area are keeping a weary watch.

Coastal Gisborne in January is normally an idyllic time and place to go camping - but not when a cyclone is on its way.

"Everyone's definitely talking about the storm coming, it's definitely clearing a few people out," a local camper told Newshub. 

"A few people have been packing up, pulling down their tents and stuff," another said. 

The Gisborne Top 10 Holiday park is in prep mode.

"We're preparing for the worst, hoping for the best. With the park we've gone around just securing things," said Gisborne Top 10 Holiday Park's Haze Richardson. 

Preparations are underway across Tairāwhiti where the cyclone could have a significant impact depending on how it tracks towards New Zealand's east coast in the coming days.

"It's motivating us to go home earlier. Cyclones will do what they do," a camper told Newshub.

"Anyone in a tent doesn't want the tent ripped down or to be under water," another said. 

Gisborne is still recovering from severe flooding in November which led to a state of emergency being declared. 

"Not everyone has media coverage or the ability to access media so that's involved a bit of door knocking, tent knocking - just informing people - and even doing a leaflet drop to warn them about what's potentially coming our way," says Ben Green, Gisborne District Council Civil Defence Manager.

Some locals are extremely concerned about what the heavy rain will do to the forestry slash problem in the area - when logging debris is swept away.

"Coastal residents are sitting tight and watching this storm and are pretty concerned about how this could be another replay of the last slash events we've seen in recent history," says Gisborne farmer Henry Gaddum.

The Metservice says it's still too early to pick how bad the cyclone could be, but they are warning people in eastern areas to prepare for the worst - not the best.

"As we get into the weekend we'll have a better idea and we'll be able to firm up that severe weather information," says Metservice meteorologist Lewis Ferris.

Some campers are more worried than others. 

"Some people are talking about 6-8 metre waves," one camper said. 

"I really don't think it's going to amount to much at all," another said.