Monday, August 17, 2009

Southern California Long-range Surf Forecast – 8/17/2009

Forecast Overview
We will have mostly weak waves for the next few days but building SW swell starts moving in on Friday and will start a looooong run of overlapping Southern Hemi swells that will keep us in some quality waves almost through the end of the month. (Lots of info in the South Pacific outlook).

Short Range (next 3 days)

Small mix of weak SW swell and some local NW windswell. Most spots will be in the knee high range with a few rare waist high+ sets at the best combo spots. Look for soft, mostly tide-swamped shape through the morning, and even swampier shape by the afternoon. Winds/Weather: slight eddy conditions on Tuesday. Look for variable/Southerly winds around 2-3 knots for the morning as well as overcast skies. Sunnier skies and building WNW flow (10-12 knots) moves in through the afternoon.

The weak SW/NW swell mix continues with knee high+ surf at the average SW facing spots. Slightly bigger waist high+ sets will leak into the top SW facing breaks, mostly through South Orange County and North San Diego. Winds/Weather: Mostly clean morning conditions with light and variable winds on tap for most areas…a few spots will have some slightly textured conditions thanks to a weak eddy. Overcast skies continue through the early part of the day. WNW winds 10-12+ knots move in through the afternoon.

It will be small again, and we will be sick of it already. Weak SW swell and WNW windswell will combo up for knee high surf and a few waist high sets at the standouts. The tides get a bit better in the morning…but we are still going to be surfing on our small wave gear. Winds/Weather: Looks clean with light and variable winds through the morning. Look for building onshore WNW winds in the 10-12 knot range by the afternoon.


North Pacific
The NPAC is still pretty quiet…high-pressure continues to block up the storm-track forcing almost any storm action up over Alaska. Long-range isn’t showing a lot of changes at this point…but I am starting to see a little activity in the Gulf of Alaska by late this upcoming weekend. Not a wave maker by any means, but it is nice to see some life to the storm track up that way.

South Pacific
First the bad news…we have to slog through some Southern Hemi leftovers for the next few days…and waiting for anything is a pain in the ass. The good news is that a damn good-looking storm has steamrolling through our swell window for the past few days and is forecast to get even better over the next 2 days. I won’t go into a lot of the storm details in this forecast…but make sure to check out the Swell Alert that I sent out for this one.

You can see that big red meatball of wave-heights (and a decent pass from the JASON-1 Satellite) on the swell model. As always I want to give a big out to Mark at for letting me poach the occasional chart, make sure to visit his site when you get a chance.

Anywhooo…this storm has actually been rolling just of Antarctica for the last few days…setting up a new S-SW swell for later this week. The swell will start off more SW’erly as it first arrives but it will quickly turn more southerly as it fills in and it will be almost completely S-swell by the time it peaks next week. Look for the first long-period SW swell (200-220) forerunners to start to show on Friday the 21st. This first part of the swell will fill in throughout the day and then start to peak Satuday and Sunday, August 22-23rd. At it peaks, this initial SW’er will be good for chest-shoulder high waves at the average S facing spots while the standouts see head high and some inconsistent overhead sets.

The second, bigger and more Southerly portion of the swell (180-200) starts to arrive late on the 23rd and will peak the 24-27th. This more southerly swell has a better angle and the fetch was a bit closer so I am expecting more size and more consistency as it peaks. Look for average S facing spots to move into the shoulder-head high+ range while the standout S facing spots see consistent shoulder-overhead sizes and some sets going 2-3’ overhead (and bigger at those best S-swell spots.)

There are still a couple of days of development on the 2nd part of the swell...but based on today’s forecasts it looks like lots of healthy waves on tap for next week. If you like bigger waves these overlapping swells look like a good one to travel on since you can get several days of surfing out of them.

Northeast Pacific Tropics
Suddenly quiet…but not completely peaceful…there are still some tropical disturbances close to Mainland Mexico/Central America…unfortunately forecasts don’ have them developing any time soon. No new storms are expected to develop for the next couple of days.

Next Long-range forecast will be posted on Thursday, August 20, 2009

- Adam Wright


Anonymous said...

Surfing is the gay!

spidah said...

"Hey everybody, look at me! I snuck into mommy & daddy's bedroom and got on the computer. I wish I could stay and talk more but I gotta go...I smell a poopie"