Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Random SW Swell Alert – UPDATE! (the good and the bad)

Well I have some good news and some bad news.

First the good news…the SW swell is still in the water heading towards all the areas that I outlined in the first post (Baja, Mainland Mex, Northern Central America, Hawaii, and California). The timing is still correct and for the most part the wave heights are going to be right on…well except in one area.

That is the bad news. Southern California is going to get a pretty good dose of swell shadowing thanks to the South Pacific islands (read more about swell shadowing here).

You can see a great example of the swell shadow on last nights WavewatchIII swell period chart.

Now that I have confirmation on the shadowing I am going to revise the wave heights for Socal.

Here is the revised SoCal forecast…

Southern California – The SW swell moves in on the 20th, actually following a small playful one that hits around the 17-18th. This new SW’er (200-220) ends up peaking on the 21st and into the 22nd. Due to shadowing from the South Pacific it won’t be as big or consistent as the other regions. We can still expect the average breaks to be around knee-waist high+. Standout spots, mostly in North San Diego and Southern Orange County, will have some bigger but inconsistent shoulder high+ sets.

It is a drag to have scale down the swell for SoCal…it had some decent potential (and I was looking forward to some waves)…oh well can’t win them all.

Like I said above, the swell is still looking good for every other region so if you are traveling and need info on the sizes, swell directions, and arrival times, you can check out the original post here.

Post #1 - Random SW Swell Alert – The South Pacific is heating up!


srfnff said...


Your chart/illustrations (here and on the shadowing link) are killin' me. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, well yours are worth a thousand answers! Along with the text, the illustrations make "the way it is" crystal clear. I didn't realize the spac island shadowing was so broadly drawn as it approached the cali coast. And charting the swell angles is priceless. Makes one realize how really special those epics swells and sessions really are!

Great fanfrickintastic work!

Danimal said...

srfnff put it well. these charts and explanations really answer some questions. thanks again.