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WNW-NW swell picks up some reinforcements on Friday but winds look a little funky at the more sensitive spots

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Adam Wright
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(Thursday) 10.16.14

Forecast Overview

Look for some increasing WNW-NW swell to start to drive up wave heights on Friday. Our surf conditions look OK for the morning, but it looks like our coastal winds may be a bit unstable and there is the potential they will turn onshore as we move through the first part of the day.

The Swell

Reinforcing WNW-NW swell (285-300) and some new SW swell (200-220) will both slowly build overnight and hold through the day on Friday. These swells basically take up where the WNW energy and the S-SW combo from earlier in the week left off, but they both have some slightly bigger sizes and some longer swell periods, which will add a little more kick to the better exposed spots.

The Surf

With the extra WNW-NW energy arriving and the inconsistent, but slightly bigger, SW swell filling in through the background we can expect a little more size and a little faster surf shape at the better exposed breaks. On average most beaches will continue to see surf around waist-chest high, with a few random chest-high+ sets hitting on the lower tides. The standout combo beaches and top NW facing spots will be in the waist-shoulder high range with some slightly bigger sets hitting on the better parts of the tide swing.

Get more details on how this swell will affect your favorite spots in the Surf Region Forecasts:


The Weather

Cloudy skies and more coastal fog expected for most of Socal on Friday. Eventually the marine layer will burn off/blow away…leaving us with mostly sunny skies through the afternoon but with slightly cooler beach temps. Winds look a little twitchy on Friday…the forecast has most areas starting off with some light/variable texture and wind speeds around 2-knots…however there is a level of instability in the those winds which could cause them to turn onshore out of the W-WSW rather quickly as we move through the morning. Look for increasing W-WSW winds in the 10-15 knot range by the early afternoon.

The Skinny

Friday will be a rideable surf day…nothing spectacular, but serviceable for most of the exposed areas and even fun shaped if the morning winds stay on the light side. Unfortunatley with the instability of our local weather the coastal wind forecast keeps shifting from light/variable to moderately onshore…particularly along regions that are usually wind-prone…so the morning, while rideable, will have the potential for some early onshore texture as well. A lot will depend on how cold things get overnight, generally this time of year the cooler nights will set up enough of a landbreeze that it helps to keep conditions cleaner in the morning, even offsetting some light onshore flow if it is trying to push in from the outer waters. Things are a little more weird for Friday because we have an area of upper level low-pressure that is affecting our overall weather and could generate enough wind to push texture onshore despite the more normal patter. Your best bet will be to spend a little time checking the cams and the wind stations, with your focus on spots that have exposure to both the WNW and SW swells along with a little bit extra wind protection. Those sort of breaks will be bigger, more consistent, and stay surfable a bit longer than the other more open spots.

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