On Thursday (6/8) Northern CA surf was chest high and windblown. South facing breaks in Santa Cruz were up to waist high at the top spots. Central California surf was waist to chest high. Southern CA breaks from Santa Barbara to just north of LA were waist high. The LA Area southward to Orange County was waist to maybe chest high at the best breaks on the sets. Southward from Orange County into San Diego best breaks were waist to chest high. The North Shore of Oahu was flat. The South Shore was thigh high. The East Shore was flat.
Small junky northwest windswell was hitting exposed breaks in California, but certainly not exciting. A small pulse of southern hemi energy is on track for the weekend into early next week providing something rideable. Hawaii is flat. A bit of southern hemi pulse is scheduled for Friday through the weekend. Also possible swell from the North Pacific to hit early next week. Longterm a decent system pushed east from under New Zealand setting up decent rideable swell for Hawaii mid-week but not expected to have much impact on the mainland. A stronger southern hemi storm is forecast this weekend under New Zealand pushing east, with a secondary storm developing early next week pushing into the Southeast Pacific. Will see what actually happens but the trend is cautiously optimistic. See details below...
SHORT- TERM FORECAST
Current marine weather and wave analysis plus forecast conditions for the next 72 hours
Thursdays jetstream charts (6/8) indicated a surprisingly decent (for the time of year) flow pushing west to east with two troughs embedded, one just west of the dateline and the other just north of it. It is the westmost one that is being productive at the surface, though the eastern one looks the best aloft with 150 kt winds running through it. A return to a generally zonal (flat) flow is expected through by Saturday with no other interesting features forecast a week out. Detailed monitoring for the North Pacific is now on an exception basis through the summer.
At the surface on Thursday (6/8) a broad 984 mb low was in the western Gulf of Alaska driving some 20-25 kt winds towards Hawaii, good for a little windswell generation, but nothing of any real interest. High pressure was just off North CA at 1024 mbs generating 20-25 kt north winds along the coast and producing more small short period windswell there. But of more note was an extratropical low approaching the dateline (see details below). Over the next 72 hours this low to remain the only systems of interest with high pressure off California fading by Saturday AM and associated weak short period windslop fading with it.
On Wednesday (6/7) an extratropical low pushed east off Japan and started building, with winds confirmed to 50-55 kts over a small area centered at 38N 160E by nightfall. By Thursday AM pressure dropped to 984 mbs with 45-50 kts west winds still confirmed in it's south quadrant targeting Hawaii from 38N 167E. These winds to hold in the 35-40 kt range aimed west through Friday AM at 39N 175E then dropping to the 30-35 kts range through Saturday AM. Seas 21-25 ft suggested Thurs/Fri pushing up to the dateline and over it to 38N 175W Sat AM then fading pushing energy down the 300-320 degree great circle routes to Hawaiian north and west shores. Possible small to moderate utility swell for Hawaii Mon/Tues (6/12-13) if this comes to pass (3.7 ft @ 12 secs - 4 ft faces).
North Pacific Animations: Jetstream - Surface Pressure/Wind - Sea Height - Surf Height
California Offshore Forecast
On Thursday (6/8) high pressure at 1026 mbs was building just off the Northern CA coast generating 25-30 kt north winds centered near Cape Mendocino pushing south to Pt Conception. This pattern to hold through late Friday (6/9) then fading but not totally dissipating through the weekend as lower pressure tries to take hold, but fails. The result is to be some form of 15-20 kt north winds along the coast north of Pt Conception. A slack wind pattern expected Monday, the the next batch of high pressure to be building off the coast but not move too close, again generating moderate north winds and short period ineffectual north windslop through Thursday (8/15).
The detailed 5 Day wind forecast is included with the surf & swell overview in the QuikCAST's.
On Thursday (6/7) a split jetstream flow was in-place over the South Pacific with most energy contained in the northern branch. A big ridge was driving the southern branch over Antarctica in the east eliminating any storm development hope there while a bit of a trough remained set up under New Zealand, making this the best region for potential development. Over the next 72 hours that trough to build with 140-150 kt winds starting to flow through it enhancing the potential for storm development there and pushing east Friday-Sunday (6/11). The models suggest a big trough to set up in the Southeast Pacific Monday-Wednesday (6/14) providing more support for storm development there while the trough in the west fades some, only to start returning next weekend.
At the surface on Thursday AM (6/8) broad generic non-swell producing low pressure was centered in the deep Central Pacific at 956 mbs while high pressure at 1024 mbs was over southeastern Australia ridging east over the Tasman Sea, setting up a storm funnel under New Zealand pushing east. By the evening a storm is to start developing there (see details below) pushing towards open waters of the South Pacific. This to be the main focus for the next 72 hours.
South Pacific Animations: Jetstream - Surface Pressure/Wind - Sea Height - Surf Height
On Wednesday (5/31) a low developed south of New Zealand with pressure 960 mbs and winds 45 kts, up to 55-60 kts that evening. Seas built to 30 ft at 62S 180W. On Thursday AM pressure was 948 mbs with winds continuing in the 50-55 kt range aimed mostly due east, almost perpendicular to any great circle route to Hawaii and only marginally better for California. But seas built to 38 ft ft over a tiny area at 63S 165W. A rapid decay set in through the day Thursday with no swell producing fetch left by evening and seas fading from 32 ft at 60S 160W. There were hints of residual 30 ft seas into Friday at 58S 158W, but with winds only 35 kts in the area, most of that was just decaying energy from previous days fetch rather than freshly generated seas.
Moderate utility class sideband energy is tracking north expected to reach Hawaii late Thursday (6/8) with swell 1 ft @ 18 secs building to 2.3 ft @ 17 secs Friday AM (3.5-4.0 ft faces). Swell to hold into Saturday (6/10) with swell 2.3 ft @ 15 secs (3.0-3.5 ft faces), then start heading down. Swell Direction: 190 degrees.
Swell to push into South CA starting Saturday (6/10) reaching 2 ft @ 18 secs late (3.0-3.5 ft faces) maxing Sunday with swell 3 ft @ 17 secs (4.5-5.0 ft faces) (but likely something less), then heading down from there. Swell Direction: 195-200 degrees
Swell to push into North CA starting Saturday (6/10) reaching 1.6 ft @ 18 secs late (2.5-3.0 ft faces) maxing Sunday with swell 2.6 ft @ 17 secs (4.0-4.5 ft faces) but likely something less, then heading down from there. Swell Direction: 195-200 degrees
New Zealand Storm
On Tuesday AM (6/6) a 968 mb low was starting to develop directly under New Zealand with winds confirmed at 50-55 kts over a tiny area at 60S 165E aimed northeast up the 195 degree path to Hawaii and the 212 degree path to California. Seas building. By evening winds were down to the 50 kts range over a tiny area at 57S 175E aimed 25 degrees east of the 194 degree path to Hawaii and right up the 210 degree path to California. Seas were building. By Wednesday AM a small area of 40 kts winds remained at 51S 169W aimed well north of the 187 degree path to Hawaii and a bit north of the 209 degree path to California. Seas were 32 ft at 55S 180W. A rapid decay set in Wednesday evening with winds down to 30-35 kts and no additional swell production occurring. Seas from previous fetch still to 32 ft at 52S 168W and fading. Nothing to be left by Thursday AM with 29 ft seas at 50S 160W early and fading fast.
Hawaii looks to be well set up to receive a good moderate dose of swell from this system. The big concern for California is that much of this fetch was shadowed by Tahiti tracking into both North and Southern CA. For now we're only projecting decent surf for Hawaii.
Hawaii: Expect swell arrival Tuesday (6/13) with swell up to 2.3 ft @ 16 secs late (3.0-3.5 ft faces). Swell to head up over night reaching 4.0-4.3 ft @ 14-15 secs for Wednesday afternoon (5.5-6.0 ft faces). Swell continuing Thursday at 4 ft @ 14-15 secs (5.5-6.0 ft early, fading late). Swell Direction: 187-194 degrees
Stronger New Zealander
A solid 964 mb low to form late Thursday (6/8) under New Zealand with a broad fetch of 40 kts winds projected at 53S 168E right on the edge of the swell window for Hawaii (201 degrees) and aimed a bit too east, but aimed well at California up the 216 degree path. By Friday AM pressure to be 964 mbs with a broad area of 45-50 kts winds centered at 53S 175W aimed 40 degrees east of the 190 degree path to Hawaii and just 15 degrees east of the 210 degree path to California but shadowed by Tahiti. Seas building to 31 ft at 55S 175E. The storm to hold into the evening with pressure 956 mbs and fetch 45 kts at 50S 165W aimed 40 degree east of the 185 degree path to Hawaii and 20 degrees east of the 205 degree path to California, emerging from under the Tahitian swell shadow. Seas to 37 ft at 51S 170W. 45 kt southwesterly fetch to continue Saturday AM at 50S 157W with sideband energy likely pushing to Hawaii up the 179 degree path but most focusing 30 degrees east of the 200 degree path to California, unshadowed. Seas 39-40 ft at 50S 160W emerging from the Tahitian swell shadow for California with sideband energy pushing to Hawaii up the 180 degree path. A little more 45 kt fetch forecast Saturday night at 52S 143W aimed towards California up the 195 degree great circle path to California. Residual 37 ft seas at 48S 150W, unshadowed at 197 degrees. Residual 33 ft seas forecast Sunday AM (6/11) at 50S 140W and fading fast.
Hawaii likely to do well from this one again even though the main swell vector to be aimed a bit east of the Islands, due mainly to their close proximity to the fetch. California to be better targeted, but the pesky Tahitian swell shadow might takes it's toll for the early part of the storm, though it's too early to tell for sure. At this time significant class swell looks possible, but the storm hasn't even formed yet.
Marine weather and forecast conditions 3-10 days into the future
Beyond 72 hours another weak low pressure system to push off Japan Sunday (6/11) tracking towards the Gulf of Alaska, possibly building there on Tuesday (6/13) producing a limited spurt of 35-40 kt west winds aimed towards the Pacific Northwest. Will see what happens in reality though.
Beyond 72 hours the models suggest a new trough in the upper atmosphere over the Southeastern Pacific to fuel development of a surface level low starting late Sunday due south of Hawaii. Pressure to drop from 972 mbs with a tiny area of 50-55 kts winds building to 964 mbs Monday AM (6/12) with a solid fetch of 50-55 kts winds at 52S 142W aimed northeast towards the US west coast and Central America. Seas modeled to 35 ft and building at 50S 145W. The storm to peak Monday PM with 55-60 kts winds aimed almost due north from 50S 132W. 37 ft seas forecast at 51S 135W. 40-45 kt residual south winds left Tuesday AM with 39 ft seas forecast at 48S 131W aimed towards California up the 185-190 degree great circle paths. Little if any energy to reach Hawaii.
More storm energy forecast pushing towards the Southwest Pacific too.
Details to follow...
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Surf Height-Swell Height Correlation Table