Monday, December 3, 2007

Surfing on Tuesday – the big W-WNW’er starts to arrive

Tuesday will be a good surf day…but it may get too big for most people’s comfort level (including mine) by the end of the day.

The first part of the new W-WNW swell begins arriving on Tuesday and will build quickly through the day, eventually peaking overnight into Wednesday. Look for this swell to fill in fast in areas like Santa Barbara and Ventura (which are actually located a little more to the West and so will get the swell earlier). LA County, OC, and San Diego will start off slower but will see a big jump by the afternoon.

Sizewise as this swell really gets going (particularly as it peaks into early Wednesday) we can expect most W-facing spots to see consistently overhead to well overhead surf…standout W-facing breaks will go double-overhead+ and I wouldn’t be surprised to see some nearly triple-overhead sets at breaks that focus these types of swell. Needless to say shape will be pretty raw, stacked up, and we can expect a lot of current to paddle against at the more exposed spots.

If you are not interested in big waves you do have a few options…I would definitely check the S-facing summer spots…sometimes on W swells you will get some of the energy to wrap in a break that wouldn’t normally pick it up. In the process of wrapping in the swell loses a lot of energy and will be much more manageable sizewise when it finally arrives.

Weather is looking decent, particularly for the morning. Winds are expected to be light/variable to light offshore through the morning…then shift a little more onshore out of the NW around 10 knots during the afternoon.

Here is a cool satellite photo of the storm sending in this swell…look how long the fetch is!

Check out the NWS satellite loop to see this bad boy in action.
Link to NWS NPAC Satellite Loop.


John said...

Hey Adam, I'll be out tomorrow am for sure. But for Wed, if it starts getting really crazy, what are some of the better summer S-facing spots in North OC? I'm near Seal so I was thinking maybe the jetties/rivermouth out at Seal (altho I'm not too stoked about the water quality issue there). What others? Thanks and keep up the good work...

Adam Wright said...


Thanks for the feedback I really am stoked you like the forecasts. As for your question...North OC is pretty exposed to this swell so finding a sheltered spot is tricky.

I think Ray Bay might be a good call...water quality will definitely be suspect but hopefully some of the worst stuff will have moved on.

If you can't stomach the sludge or if the bay isn't working that well you may give the middle jetties down in Newport a shot (32nd street up through 44th). It may be a little heavier than the bay but the paddle is short and the jetties break up the current a little bit. The far north beaches in bolsa might be another call...but if you are looking for smaller surf try to get as far away from the HB cliffs as you can.

Hope this gives you a better idea on where to go...have fun!