Small S-SW swell mix on tap for the next several days with some potential tropical ugliness in Southern Mexico

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Adam Wright
(Tuesday) 10.14.14

Central America and Mainland Mexico Short-Range Surf Forecast

The short-range forecast is a bit sketchy…but only because we have the newly developing tropical system. We will have to break things down into two separate scenarios…one where the tropical storm/hurricane does form (and pulls together where the models think it will) and the other where there isn’t a tropical system (or it isn’t a significant wave maker)


As you can see on the chart above…the 7-day forecast graph for Southern Mainland Mexico has a big spike right in the middle of what is a pretty tame run of background/small Southern Hemi swells. This of course would be the case if the tropical system does develop. Now the thing to keep in mind is that if this storm does form it will pretty much only affect Southern/Central Mainland Mexico…the models right now are calling for nearly 7-8’ seas made up of mostly short-period tropical SE energy (135-160) moving into exposed areas of the region. Obviously this will create some sloppy overhead to well overhead surf for the region…and will very likely bring the storm winds right onshore along with all the rain and other assorted nastiness these storms can generate.

Now if we filter out the short-period tropical energy we are left with a much more sedate blend of overlapping S-SW swells (180-220) from a number of small SPAC storms. These swells will be able to combine together for about 2’+ of swell with periods in the 15-18 second range. Those sort of deepwater sizes will translate into chest-shoulder high surf for many of the average spots while the standouts see some shoulder-head high sets.

We can expect those sort of sizes to stick around through the rest of this week, and then slowly start to gain some momentum as we move into early next week and more S and SW swell starts to arrive. We would see this new pickup in size begin to show late on Sunday night, with the first surfable energy finally filling in on Monday-Tuesday (Oct 20-21).

Costa Rica | Nicaragua | El Salvador | Southern Mexico

Long-Range Surf forecast Central America and Mainland Mexico

South Pacific Swell Forecast

Right now we have the remnants of a couple of weak storms moving through the S and SW portions of the swell window.

It is these very modest storms that will add the new energy for early next week. As you can see they aren’t very strong, and didn’t last very long, which isn’t great for swell production, however we didn’t have anything really in play at the time so we will have to make do. The area to watch is the storm activity on the other side of New Zealand…it will be moving into the SPAC over the next several days.

It will take about 3-4 days before the storm can slip between Antarctica and New Zealand and make its way east enough that it finally drops into the more open swell window.

Once it gets past the bulge of Antarctic Ice that has built up around 140-150W longitude…the storm seems to get a reinforcement of energy, something that looks like it will help to kickstart some better swell production.

From there we will see the storm track a bit more to the NE, which will put it on a better track while strengthening the fetch on the ‘good’ side of the storm. This will be where it would really start to produce the better part of the swell (or at least it has the best potential for swell production). At the same time we have another couple of stronger cold fronts starting to move away from New Zealand, which will likely be able to capitalize on the sea-state the first system sets up.

At this point, based on this long-range forecast run, we would be looking at some stronger S-SSW swell (180-210) from the first storm, followed by some new SW swell (210-225) from the second set of storms closer to New Zealand. These swells would start to arrive with some long-period energy around Oct 24, with the main push of energy hitting and peaking Oct 25-27. Sizewise I would expect the surf to push back into the shoulder-head high+ range for most of the average exposed spots while the standout breaks see consistent head high to overhead+ sizes along with some inconsistent sets going a few feet overhead. Since there is more storm activity forecast to follow these first new systems it is likely that we would see waves from this storm group stick around for a few more days after it peaks, weakening slowly but staying surfable almost all the way till the end of the month.

Keep in mind that we have nearly a week before these storms actually develop in realtime, and since we are shifting seasons there is a good chance that we will have to make some adjustments as they pull together. Check back in as we get closer…we will keep you posted on any new developments or changes that make happen.

East Pacific Tropical Forecast

Currently there are no active tropical storms in our region…

However there is a big patch of thunderstorms that just moved off of Central America and is slipping into the Gulf of Tehuantepec where there is a decent chance (around 30%) that we will see it strengthen into named storm in the next couple of days.

The conditions look fairly conducive for TS development so the 5-day forecast is showing that the 30% chance of storm formation we see for the next 48-hours actually increases to about a 60% chance that something forms in the next 4-5 days.

This initial look at the new development suggests that if a storm does form it will be close to the Southern/Central Mainland Mexico area and will have a decent chance of impacting land in that region. As always we will have to wait and see how it really decides to play out.

The Next Mainland Mexico and Central America surf forecast will be updated Friday, October 17, 2014.

Adam Wright
Surf Forecaster

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