small to moderate surf through the weekend, but new long-period WNW on the way for next week

No Comments
Austin Gendron
(Thursday) 10.4.12

Short Range Surf Forecast Overview

Swell is going to be in the smaller range through the weekend, with mostly leftovers out of the NW.  There should be some new Southern Hemi though to help keep at least the S-SW facing breaks surfable.  Sunday we’re looking at some small 15 to 16-second WNW (290-305), which should peak Monday, and then possibly a larger WNW for the  middle of next week.

To view the details of your local region click on your “Central California Surf Region”
San Francisco | San Mateo | Santa Cruz | Monterey | SLO County  

The NW (300-330) swell from the middle of the week is looking pretty weak through the weekend, with smaller knee to waist high waves at the stand out breaks.  Luckily we have better sized S-SSW (185-200) showing up on Friday, possibly delivering the goods in the form of some waist to chest high+ peaks at some of the better breaks for the end of the work week and start of your weekend.  A matter of fact, if you’re checking this Thursday night, and you just got out of the water you know that the Southern Hemi was starting to fire tonight at some spots.  I think the key though is going to be the tide.  You’ve gotta get out when the tides right for your spot, or it’s probably going to be looking smaller and not quite so clean.

On sunday we should start to see a little bit more energy at the W-NW facing breaks, as a new pulse of 15 to 16 second WNW (290-305) starts to build.  Size should pick up early Sunday and peak later in the day, unfortunately this swell isn’t looking to spectacular.  Wave heights could be pushing the chest to overhead range at the better breaks, but the combination of onshores, and smaller size could mean some crumbly peaks.  It also looks like there could be some possible showers too.

Long-Range Surf and Swell Forecast

North Pacific Swell Forecast

So I’m sure you’re starting to wonder… “what’s up with that new WNW on the graph up on the top?”.  Well here’s what we’re looking at.  I found this cool graphic on the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) site today.

How cool is that right? They even did all the labeling for me! Anyways over the past few days there’s been this tropical storm known as Maliksi.  There’s an arrow pointing to the remnants of her up just NE of Japan.  Well the leftovers from the storm are still generating strong winds right in the area where we like to see cold fronts dropping off the Kamchatka Peninsula.  Just like this…

The cold air from the frontal system just north of the storm mixing with the warm moist tropical low pressure, is going to kick up some serious fetch, with winds around 40 to 50 knots.  Then the storm follows the swell, continuing to blow strong winds over the water as it moves towards the west coast.

Basically… it has potential to generate some fun swell for us.  I’m a little skeptical still, but the models are calling for the storm to generate seas in the 40-45+ foot range about 3500 miles away, and then as it passes south of The Aleutians, the remnants of the storm get a jolt from another cold front coming out of the Bering Sea.

So the storm basically goes into beast mode again right over the top of the deep water swell from round 1.  This could mean swell building for a couple of days before peaking, and that first pulse is expected to have long 20-23 second forerunners.

Two overlapping pulses of long-period swell in the water honestly does look like a unicorn or some other magical creature just vomited very uniformly and its spreading across the Pacfic.  Anyways… so swell could start to show up with forerunners next Tuesday night from the WNW (280-295).  Building through the day Wednesday and holding size Thursday.  That size is hard to call as of right now, but it could be a couple feet overhead to DOH+ through the middle of next week.  Hopefully the winds play nicely around that time.  The second pulse could start to add some energy Wednesday and Thursday as well.  But that part of the forecast is still pretty far out so I’m going to have to watch it carefully over the next couple days.  Monday’s forecast will have a lot more details in it for you, since the swells will already be in the water.

South Pacific Swell Forecast

So south swells start to back off after this S-SSW swell in the water right now peaks.  There are a couple smaller pulses expected, which could keep the best spots surfable, but overall smaller swell on the schedule for the start of next week.

I’ve mentioned the energy coming out from under New Zealand a couple of times and the models continue to show the system developing and generating 35-40 foot seas as it chips away at the Southern Island of New Zealand… but it can’t hold it together as it moves into the South Pacific.  There could still be enough of the swell making it past the island that there could be some small scale swell showing up around the middle of the month.

Tropical Outlook

Nothing going on in the tropics right now…

no other tropical cyclones are expected in the next 48 either… so we’ll have to wait until thursday to see what’s going on.

The next long-range forecast will be posted on Monday, October 8th, 2012.

Austin Gendron
Surf Forecaster