Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Thursday’s Surf – There is more where that came from

Thursday will have lots of swell, but some NW winds, and shady morning tides, may keep most breaks from being all that surfable. Still with this much energy moving through there are plenty protected areas that may groom out a few corners.

So the W-WNW swell is still on the rise here Wednesday afternoon…and if the outer buoys are reading correctly…the peak of the swell will arrive later this afternoon and hold overnight into Thursday. The energy from this one is coming in from 270-300 degrees but the main push of swell is still holding in the 285-300 portion. Check out the screen grab from the Harvest Buoy this afternoon…

That bump of 18-second stuff is a good sign that the swell will continue to rise at least for the next several hours (probably longer since this swell has some real duration).

On Thursday, I am still expecting the average W facing breaks to be consistently in the shoulder-overhead range with sets going a couple of feet+ overhead at times…and always the chance of some bigger set waves sneaking through.

The better WNW facing spots, in Ventura, South LA, and South San Diego, will be running consistently overhead to a few feet overhead. Top WNW-NW facing breaks in those areas will have surf running overhead+ to well overhead fairly consistently with some consistent double-overhead, and possibly bigger, sets mixing in as the tide drops.

Winds are not forecast to be all that great tomorrow…Santa Barbara down through Los Angeles are likely to see NW flow in the morning as the cold-front moves out…current forecasts are showing 12-15+ knots for most areas and stronger gusts at times. OC and San Diego will have lighter winds, but still expect some texture at the more exposed spots. The winds are actually forecast to lay down later in the day (around sunset)…so keep an eye on conditions…we may see an evening glass-off at the wind-protected spots.

So like I said…lots of swell on tap for tomorrow and even though the winds won’t be great there will be a few little nuggets out there. Those classic winter spots will continue to have the most size and consistency, but it might be a little too much energy showing in those areas. Points and reefs will continue to have the best shape…most of the beach breaks will be a ugly mess…but keep an open mind, this is one of those swells that might be able to push waves into areas that usually don’t see winter swells…who knows, with a little hunting you might be able to find a manageable section here or there.

Make sure to read the regional forecasts for more details on how the swell will affect each county.

Regional/County Forecasts

Santa Barbara Surf Forecast
Ventura County Surf Forecast
Los Angeles County Surf Forecast
Orange County Surf Forecast
San Diego Surf Forecast

Here are the tides…

01/14/2010 Thursday
01:56AM LST 2.1 L
07:58AM LST 5.8 H
03:19PM LST -0.8 L
09:39PM LST 3.6 H


Anonymous said...

I love the note to destroy Catalina for constantly being in the f-ing i feel naked wihtout spell check, ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Thanks for keeping the reports funny Adam

Anonymous said...

love the Catalina note to self. :-)

Anonymous said...

soooo...does Catalina's west coast get huge waves during big winter swells??

Anonymous said...

Catalina would be a fine place to surf and all if it had any surf spots, there is surf on the island sure and enough to even have a few locals on it but not worth making a trip for, keep searching

Anonymous said...

Catalina doesn't just block winter swells. It has two other primary affects to ensure that OC has the worst surf in California:

o The San Pedro Channel, the narrow gap between Catalina & PV, creates a wind tunnel effect that magnifies normal afternoon trades.

It's why OC surfers have only a few hours long window in the am. No hanging around/checking back later till the tide drops, or the swell fills in, or the crowd leaves, etc, etc that other good spots enjoy.

It's also why windsurfers flock to both Cabrillo Beach (by the LA Port) and HB. Seal is even worse - almost as bad as King City. (Where they call it the 'Devil Wind'.)

o Catalina creates an eddy flow from summer trade winds off Pt Conception. It's why it's the 'Catalina Eddy'.

This S wind helps ensure that OC is blown out from dusk-dawn from Mar through Aug. So even though OC gets summer swells, they are usually all ripped up & blown out.

The bottom line is that OC is cursed. You gotta spend 1-2 hrs driving + $20-30 in gas (r/t) to catch decent waves.

Imagine what Crystal Cove down through the rest of Laguna would look like if they rec'd west swells.

Anyone ever take a look at the canyon below Laguna on Google Earth? It's way, way steeper/deeper than those found off Moss and/or Blacks.

Once Catalina clears out in few million years, maybe it will break like Baja Malibu.

Anonymous said...

OC usually has good winds, eddys blow offshore in some places and the countys north have lots of nw wind on them anyways from the eddys, also check reports on the surf, you'll find that most spots are about the same sizes as other countys in winter time. oc just doesnt really have any known bigger wave spots like SD or VC do, and uh my morning drive down pch sure did say otherwise about laguna spots not getting any swell, il say no more if you dont know dont worry about it. Summer rocks always swell always bigger than other countys, sure winter in oc is smaller than summer, but winter gives us plenty of waves and nice conditions to hold us till then and in summer time all the other countys wish they had oc's swell window, cuz thats what its all about right? scoring solid surf in 70 degree water, mean while soon as april hits other countys surfers are busting out there ''fishes'' for the next 4-5 months.
No region in socal is better or worse than another, it all just depends on what your into and is basically a matter of opinian.