Plenty of surfable swell in the forecast, with more overlapping SW’s and even a NW on the way

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Austin Gendron
(Friday) 10.5.12

Central America and Mainland Mexico Short-Range Surf Forecast

It looks like fairly consistent surf through the weekend, with maybe a little extra power and size showing up early next week with the new S-SSW that starts to arrive Sunday/Monday.

The trend of moderate sized SSW (200-220) overlapping continues this weekend, with some new long-period energy showing up Friday and peaking on Saturday with wave heights in the shoulder to  overhead+ range at stand outs.  There could be some deepwater spots seeing a couple feet overhead or bigger, but you’ll have to catch it on the right tide and the swell will have to be channeling in pretty well for that to happen since there’s only about 2.5-3 feet of deepwater swell.

This trend should hold through early Sunday before another more powerful S (180-200) starts to build  with periods around 18-20 seconds.  This guy should start to hit the southern parts of Central America first early Sunday with forerunners, and then gradually build through the day, moving its way up the coast.  Again a mostly moderately sized swell, but possibly a bit bigger than Friday and Saturday’s pulse, with deepwater heights hitting the 3 to 4 foot mark during the peak on Monday.  This could put some plus size waves in the water for standouts, while deepwater spots that like that southerly angle could be pumping out DOH+ surf  through Wednesday.

As Adam mentioned earlier this week, there could be some funky weather starting this weekend through parts of Panama and Costa Rica, possibly lasting through part of next week.  The Monsoon trough seems to be sitting right over that area, and lots of convection will mean some thunderstorms.

As usual, with multiple swells in the water, different swell periods and directions are going to make each region work a little differently…so for more details on your favorite spots and regions in Central America and Mainland Mexico check out the links below…you can drill down to a specific break and get a custom forecast, targeted weather, tides, and surf conditions dialed in for that particular spot.

Costa Rica | Nicaragua | El Salvador | Southern Mexico

Long-Range Surf forecast Central America and Mainland Mexico

After that bigger S swell there was a period of not much going on down in the Southern Hemisphere… but just enough that we’re not going to see the surf subside to agonizing size.

The short-range swell models start to play tricks on your eyes.  You can see some energy moving through deepwater here.  That is from a bunch of storm energy that never really got super big, but was enough to produce some long-period energy around New Zealand a few days ago.  Most of that swell will deteriorate by the time it gets all the way up to Central America and Mainland Mex, leaving us with longer-period (18-19 seconds) SW (215-225) building late on the 11th into the 12th. It’s looking small to moderate right now, probably producing spotty inconsistent surf in the chest to head high range at standouts, maybe overhead at the better breaks on the 12th and 13th.  Then you see that other large system behind it, trying to hack away at New Zealand.

The problem though and hence my comment about playing tricks on our eyes, is that the big system basically falls appart as soon as it works its way past New Zealand, which isn’t going to really give us the boost we need in our swell window to produce some really good size.  On the other hand this storm above would be the low-pressure that finally breaks through… and although it could manage to build on the sea state of the last storm, its still not looking super impressive, but could be enough to add a little extra juice to get the bigger SW (215-225) to us in good form.

So here’s what we’re looking at… The first smaller guy should show up on the 12th, followed by the more moderate to plus size pulse on the 14th.  That one looks like it could have long-period forerunners in the 20+ range from the SW (215-225), building to a peak probably around the 15th.  Then finally another smaller pulse of small to moderate size surf for the 17th keeping things at least surfable through the 3rd week of October.  Then you can see that big rainbow coming from the north…

Basically we’re expecting to see this huge system come off the coast of Japan in the next few hours, exploding into the North Pacific with seas in the 45+ range… then traveling for a couple of days before another shot of cold air redirects the whole fetch S-SE (towards Central America) and gives the ocean another good ass kicking up there over the top of the very large deepwater swell already moving through the region.  This thing currently is showing deepwater swell heights of 15+ feet passing Hawaii mid-next week.  So from the looks of it there could be some NW (300-310) hitting the region with some long 20-23 second periods around the 13th or 14th.

Size will most likely be moderate for most of Central America, since a lot of it is sheltered from these NW swells, but W-NW Mainland Mex, Baja, and top spots in Central America that can pull it in, will probably be pumping out some bigger surf.  The best part is, this guy shows up right around the same time the moderate sized SW swell is due.  So the combo at some breaks could be insane, helping add some decent size and shape to stand out breaks. Adam will be able to give you more details in Tuesday’s forecast though.

East Pacific Tropics

So basically this morning when I checked the tropical situation… I didn’t see much.  There was an area of low pressure with only a 10% probability of becoming a tropical cyclone in the next 48 hours… well a lot has changed in the few short hours since this morning apparently…

So now the the National Hurricane Center is giving this area of low pressure (located about 750 miles SSW of Cabo) a 50% chance of becoming a cyclone.  That’s a pretty dramatic change in just a couple of hours.  Either way the low has been becoming more organized, and upper-level winds are starting to look better for development as it moves WNW over the next couple days.  Now, with all that said you its still pretty far away, and doesn’t look like its really going to produce much swell for the region… so I guess you don’t need to get all excited about it.

Early next week though, we could see that monsoon trough that is pegged to generate some weather issues for Costa Rica and Panama possibly producing a cyclone as well for the middle of next week.  This could produce some localized windswell for the southern part of Central America mid-next week, but its way too early to tell right now.

The next Mainland Mexico and Central America surf forecast will be updated Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Austin Gendron
Surf Forecaster