West Coast And Hawaii Surf Forecast

Not a lot of change from last weeks forecast…the storms we had lining up for both the North and the South Pacific have formed and now we are just wait for the swell/weather/wind/rain to hit the various exposed areas.

North Pacific
The fun (say it with the sarcasm that I’m trying to put into it) storm front pulling together just off the West Coast is coming together right now…and it looks pretty unpleasant.

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The main part of the storm is going to push through the Pacific NW and on down through Central California…but thanks to that mid-latitude cut-off low that was spinning down between Hawaii and SoCal it looks like spots south of Point Conception are going to get some ugly winds/weather as well.

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At this point look for a very sloppy W-WNW-NW stormswell (260-330) will impact the West Coast starting as early as Tuesday…but really peaking Wednesday and Thursday. Size won’t really matter for most areas thanks to the winds from the storm, which will be westerly 20-30 knots, are basically going to just trash conditions almost everywhere. There may be a couple of pockets, basically spots that work during stormy conditions, that will shelter from the bigger energy, but expect less swell to make it into those areas since most of the increase in energy is going to be short-period (4-8 second period) that doesn’t “wrap” around things very well.

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This storm actually sent a bit of N-NNE swell to Hawaii that hit on Monday…and a following storm will send in another round of NW-N swell that hits mid-week. Neither swell is all that big but it will at least keep the North Shores from going completely flat.

Long-range is just showing the high-pressure trying to rebuild a bit over the upcoming weekend which generally slows down swell production…but this high isn’t particularly strong so there is still some activity occurring around the edges.

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Most of the swell from this set up will be focused toward the Pacific NW (and Alaska/Canada whooohooo!) but there may be a little more NW swell for Hawaii around the 25-26th…and more for the West Coast around the 28-29th…nothing major, but at least something worth hitting up a winter spot or two.

South Pacific
The South Pacific is finally living up to the forecast it had running about a week ago…that there would be a pretty significant storm brewing together around SE New Zealand.

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The big red blob…the one that has been on the chart for freaking forever is actually forming right now…in fact I just saw a Jason-1 pass (he is a satellite that does all kinds of spacey stuff but uses some sweet millimeter wavelength radar to measure wave heights as well) that went right through that storm…and it is showing a solid 35-40’ seas which is pretty good…wind speeds are in the 30-40 knot range which isn’t great (I would love to see some 50-60 knots in there)…but the fetch is pretty massive so that may make up for its slower wind speeds.

The area that will be most affected by this swell is going to be Tahiti and the other nearby South Pacific Islands. This swell will start moving into that area later this week…with a good-sized initial pulse hitting on Wednesday and then another late Thursday that peaks on Friday. This one looks good for about 10-12’ of deepwater energy @ 16-17 second swell periods…that size/period combined with a more westerly SW swell (210-220) direction is going to do some silly things to Teahupo’o as it peaks…but guys out in that area can expect swell for most of the week.

042410_spac_periods_forecast_fnmocThe West Coast…SoCal in particular is going to get some initial SW swell (200-220) pushing up around the 25th…and then the bigger SW swell around the 27-28th. The swell will still pass through that SPAC island shadow…but it should still do a pretty good job setting up some shoulder-head high+ for our standouts by the time it peaks…maybe even a few bigger waves at those spots that really focus these sort of swells.

Keep in mind that these swells hit Mainland Mexico and Central America pretty good as well (and about the same time they hit SoCal, just a little earlier and bigger)…so that region wouldn’t be a horrible place to be over the next couple of weeks. I’m just saying….
That is it for now…next forecast will be on Friday, have a great week!

Adam Wright
TransWorld SURF Forecaster
www.socalsurf.com