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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: Wednesday, December 13, 2017 3:41 PM
Buoys: Northern CA - Southern CA - Hawaii - Gulf of Alaska - Pacific Northwest
Buoy Forecast:
Northern CA - Southern CA - Hawaii - Gulf of Alaska - Pacific Northwest
Pacific Links:  Atmospheric Models - Buoy Data - Current Weather - Wave Models
Forecast Archives: Enter Here
A chronology of recent Mavericks Underground forecasts. Once you enter, just click on the HTML file forecast you want to review (e.g. 073199.html equals July 31, 1999). To view the maps that correspond to that forecast date, select the html file labeled 073199 maps.html
3.8 - California & 4.0 - Hawaii
Using the 'Winter' Scale
(See Swell Category Table link at bottom of page)

Probability for presence of largest swells in near-shore waters of NCal, SCal or Hawaii.    

Issued for Week of Monday 12/11 thru Sun 12/17

Swell Potential Rating Categories
5 = Good probability for 3 or more days of Significant swell
4 = Good probability for 1-2 days of Significant swell
3 = Good probability for 3 or more days of Intermediate/Advanced swell
2 = Good probability for  1-2 days of
Intermediate/Advanced swell
1 = Good probability for 3 or more days of Impulse or Windswell
0 = Low probability for 1-2 days of Impulse or Windswell   

Solid Swell Hitting Hawaii
Pushing Towards CA Too

BUOY ROUNDUP

On Wednesday, December 13, 2017 :

  • Buoy 106 (Waimea): Seas were 15.2 ft @ 15.4 secs with swell 10.0 ft @ 14.8 secs from 313 degrees.
  • Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 4.0 ft @ 13.7 secs with swell 3.3 ft @ 13.7 secs from 276 degrees. Wind at the buoy was west at 2-4 kts. Water temperature 60.8 degs. At Ventura (Buoy 111) swell was 3.1 ft @ 13.0 secs from 276 degrees. At Santa Monica (028) swell was 3.1 ft @ 13.2 secs from 260 degrees. At Camp Pendleton (043) swell was 2.1 ft @ 12.5 secs from 238 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma (191) swell was 3.4 ft @ 13.4 secs from 260 degrees.
  • Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 7.6 ft @ 12.5 secs with swell 5.2 ft @ 12.5 secs from 286 degrees. Wind at the buoy was north at 10-12 kts. Water temp 55.9 degs.

See Hi-Res Buoy Dashboards (bottom of the page)

Swell Classification Guidelines

Significant: Winter - Swell 8 ft @ 14 secs or greater (11+ ft faces) for 8+ hours (greater than double overhead).
Summer
- Head high or better.
Advanced: Winter - Swell and period combination capable of generating faces 1.5 times overhead to double overhead (7-10 ft)
Summer - Chest to head high.
Intermediate/Utility Class: Winter - Swell and period combination generating faces at head high to 1.5 times overhead (4-7 ft).
Summer
- Waist to chest high.
Impulse/Windswell: Winter - Swell and period combination generating faces up to head high (1-4 ft) or anything with a period less than 11 secs.
Summer
- up to waist high swell. Also called 'Background' swell.

Surf Heights for Hawaii should be consider 'Hawaiian Scale' if period exceeds 14 secs.

 

PACIFIC OVERVIEW
Current Conditions
On Wednesday (12/13) in North and Central CA swell from the Western Gulf of Alaska was still hitting producing set waves in the 1-2 ft overhead range at top breaks and clean with offshore winds blowing but a hint of warble in the water too. Protected breaks were head high and clean. At Santa Cruz surf was head high or so and clean but with a little warble in the water from tide. In Southern California up north surf was chest to head high on the sets and clean but still smoky with light offshore's. In North Orange Co surf was head high on the sets and clean with not a breath of wind and lined up coming from the north. South Orange Country's best breaks were shoulder high and clean. In San Diego surf was head high on the sets and lined up and clean. Hawaii's North Shore was getting the main pulse of the last in a series of swells from the Western Gulf with waves 15 ft Hawaiian at top spots and pretty ragged and bumpy. The South Shore was flat to thigh high and clean. The East Shore was getting wrap around northwest swell at double overhead but chopped early with north winds near 15 kts early.

See QuikCASTs for the 5 day surf overview or read below for the detailed view.

Meteorological Overview
On Wednesday (12/13) swell from a broad system that developed off the North Kuril's tracking southeast Sat-Sun (12/10) with up to 33 ft seas aimed east then faded some while falling southeast over the dateline Mon-Tues (12/12) with 30-32 ft seas was hitting Hawaii and propagating towards the US West Coast. Residual swell from a series of gales previously in the Western Gulf were also still hitting California, but fading from their peak the day before. After that things back off some with a gale forecast tracking into the Northwestern Gulf Fri-Sun (12/17) with up to 34 ft seas aimed east. Maybe another to follow tracking from off Kamchatka to the North Dateline region on Mon-Tues (12/19) with up to 33 ft seas aimed east. But overall a bit of a slow down in the surf pattern is expected.

 

SHORT- TERM FORECAST
Current marine weather and wave analysis plus forecast conditions for the next 72 hours

North Pacific

Overview
Jetstream
On Wednesday AM (12/13) the jetstream was pushing east off Japan ridging slightly over the dateline then falling southeast into a trough in the Central Gulf of Alaska being fed by 210 kt winds and just starting to get pinched with it's apex 50 nmiles north of Hawaii offering good support for gale development. The jet split east of there with most energy tracking northeast up into North Canada with then southern branch tracking east into and over Southern Baja. Over the next 72 hours
the trough is to become fully pinched later Thurs (12/14) no longer supporting gale development in lower levels of the atmosphere. Beyond 72 hours the jet is to remain consolidated pushing off Japan but with wind energy down to 120 kts in pockets with no clearly defined troughs forecast through Sun (12/17) though wind energy is to start building over Japan late in the period. By Monday (12/18) winds over Japan are to build to 180 kts reaching to the dateline and then up to 190 kts on Tues (12/19) reaching over the dateline and starting to fall southeast again forming a trough in the Western Gulf of Alaska by Wed (12/20) offering support for gale development. The jet is to remain split east of there with some sense that the northern branch might start falling south pushing over Washington offering precipitation there.

Surface Analysis
On Wednesday (12/13) swell from a gale previously in the West Gulf was fading in California (see West Gulf Gale below). Of more interest is swell from a broader gale that traversed the North Pacific which is now hitting Hawaii and bound for California (see North Pacific Gale below).

Over the next 72 hours a weak system was pushing off the the Southern Kuril Islands later Tues (12/12) pushing east with up to 40 kt west winds and seas to 26 ft at 43N 155E in the evening. It is to fade while tracking east Wed (12/13) making it half way to to the Dateline region in the evening with barely 35 kt west winds and seas fading from 25 ft at 46N 166E. On Thurs (12/14) fetch is to regenerate some at 30-35 kts from the northwest moving over the dateline in the evening with seas 25 ft in pockets centered roughly at 48N 178E. This system to fade while new energy builds south of it at 35 kts from the west over the dateline. That southern fetch is to get more organized as it tracks over the dateline into the Western Gulf Fri AM (12/15) with a building area of 45 kt northwest winds getting traction on the oceans surface and seas building to 25 ft at 41N 175W. The gale is to race northeast in the evening with winds to 50 kts from the west and seas 28 ft at 46N 162W. The core fetch is to track northeast and almost inland over Alaska Sat AM (12/16) with a decent area of 40+ kts winds south of the Eastern Aleutians into the Northern Gulf with 30 ft seas at 48N 169W aimed east targeting California and the Pacific Northwest with a second area of seas to 35 ft up at 54N 152W targeting only Canada. Fetch is to be lifting northeast in the evening in the Northern Gulf at 40 kts with 34 ft seas at 51N 161W aimed east. Sun AM (12/17) fetch is to be limited to the extreme Northern Gulf at 35 kts from the west with 30 ft seas at 53N 151W targeting only British Columbia and points north of there. Something to monitor.

 

North Pacific Gale
On Saturday AM (12/9) a gale was developing just east of the North Kuril's slowly getting traction on the oceans surface generating a broad area of west winds at 30-40 kts aimed east. In the evening 45-50 kt west winds were holding there with seas building from 32 ft at 48N 167E. On Sun AM (12/10) 45 kt west winds held position over a small area aimed east while additional 35-40 kt west winds pushed hard east reaching into the Western Gulf with seas in the original fetch at 33 ft at 50N 165E (323 degs HI) and 20 ft seas build east over the dateline to 42N 175W. In the evening the core fetch faded from 45 kts still locked off the Kuril Islands with pockets of 35-45 kt west winds extending east into the Gulf with 33 ft seas off the Kuril's over a small sized area at 48N 165E (322 degs HI) but with 28-30 ft seas stretching from the southern tip of Kamchatka the whole way into the Western Gulf with its eastern tip at 44N 167W (296 degs NCal). 1500 nmiles of fetch. Mon AM (12/11) fetch was becoming concentrated in the Western Gulf at 35-40 kts from the northwest and west over a large sized area with 31 ft seas centered at 40N 175W targeting Hawaii directly (325 degs HI, 291 degs NCal, 295 degs SCal) and a small area of 36 ft seas at 44N 160W targeting the US West Coast (296 degs NCal). Much swell energy to be pushing towards Hawaii and the US West Coast. In the evening the main fetch was fading while tracking southeast at 35 kts with a large area of 31 ft seas falling southeast at 35N 171W targeting Hawaii (325 degs HI, 281 degs NCal, 287 degs SCal) and California. Tues AM (12/12) fetch was from the northwest fading from barely 30 kts with 28 ft seas at 34N 168W targeting mainly Hawaii. Larger raw swell is possible for the Islands.

Hawaii: Swell to be peaking at sunrise Wed (12/13) at 13.3 ft @ 16-17 secs (21 ft) and raw and jumbled fading some later in the afternoon. Swell fading Thurs (12/14) from 8.4 ft @ 15 secs (12.5 ft) and fading through the day. Residuals on Fri (12/15) fading from 4.7 ft @ 13 secs (6.0 ft). Swell Direction: 320-330 degrees

North CA: Swell arrival on Wed PM (12/13) after dark building slowly with period 17 secs. Swell to be peaking on Thurs AM (12/14) at 5.6 ft @ 15 secs (8.0 ft) and holding. Swell up some Fri AM (12/15) as secondary energy build in with swell to 6.9 ft @ 15-16 secs (10.5 ft) fading slightly through the day. Residuals fading Sat AM (12/16) fading from 5.2 ft @ 14 secs early (7.0 ft). Swell Direction: 285-290 degrees

South CA: Swell arrival on Thurs AM (12/14) building to 1.6 ft @ 17 secs late (2.5 ft). Swell building Fri (12/15) to 2.4 ft @ 17 secs later (4.0 ft). Swell continue Sat (12/16) fading slowly from 3.2 ft @ 15 secs (4.5-5.0 ft). Residuals fading Sun (12/17) from 2.3 ft @ 13-14 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell Direction: 300 degrees

 

West Gulf Gale
An improved jetstream flow aloft was feeding the storm track on Tues-Wed (12/6). A gale tracked east from the Southern Kuril's Tues-Wed (12/6) generating up to 28 ft seas over a tiny area at 46N 167E Wed AM (12/6) then fading. But on Thurs AM (12/7) that gale continued tracking east and rebuilding with 35 kt northwest winds moving into the Western Gulf with 23 ft seas at 46N 172W (298 degs NCal). In the evening fetch was falling southeast some at 35 kts over a broader area with 27 ft seas at 43N 166W targeting NCal well (296 degs) with sideband energy to Hawaii (345 degs). Fri AM (12/8) fetch held it's position at 30-35 kts with additional 30 kts northwest fetch building in just west of it resulting in 25-26 ft seas over a solid area at 42N 162W (291 degs NCal) with sideband energy into HI (355 degs). In the evening the gale faded with fetch gone and seas fading 23 ft at 41N 158W aimed east (293 degs NCal). But the secondary fetch is to be building (see Another Gulf Gale - Hawaii) below. Another modest pulse of swell is expected for North and Central CA.

North CA: Swell fading on Wed (12/13) from 4.8 ft @ 12 secs (5.5 ft). Swell Direction: 291 degrees

 

  North Pacific Animations: Jetstream - Surface Pressure/Wind - Sea Height - Surf Height

 

Tropical Update
No tropical systems of interest were being monitored.

California Nearshore Forecast
On Wednesday AM (12/13) high pressure at 1036 mbs over the Great Basin ridging down the US West Coast continuing an offshore flow nearshore for the entire US West Coast at 5-10 kts. But north winds were also showing over outer waters (75 nmiles out off Central CA) at 15 kts and forecast to build in coverage over all of North and Central CA by afternoon. On Thurs (12/14) high pressure is to build centered 500 nmiles west of North CA generating northeast winds early for most of California nearshore but turning north to northwest in the afternoons and north winds 15-20 kts off the entire California Coast. So a bit of a pattern change is projected. Then on Friday (12/15) the pattern change becomes more pronounced with high pressure building east centered 1000 nmiles west of the CA-Oregon border producing north winds 15-20 kts over North CA but light winds from Pt Arena southward but building from the north at 20-25 kts nearshore from Bodega Bay northward in the later afternoon. By Sat (12/16) its all over with a strong gradient in control of all of North and Central CA with north winds 35 kts for most of that region nearshore. The gradient is to fade some on Sun (12/17) with north winds dropping from 20 kts nearshore for all of North and Central CA early and down to 10 kts later afternoon from Pt Arena southward. Monday a light offshore flow is forecast from Pt Arena southward but with north winds 20 kts holding for Cape Mendocino but fading to calm later. A weak offshore flow is expected on Tues (12/19) continuing into Wed (12/20).

South Pacific

Overview
Surface Analysis  
No swell producing winds of interest were occurring.

Over the next 72 hours no swell producing weather systems of interest are forecast.

 

South Pacific Animations: Jetstream - Surface Pressure/Wind - Sea Height - Surf Height

 

QuikCAST's

 

LONG-TERM FORECAST
Marine weather and forecast conditions 3-10 days into the future

North Pacific

Beyond 72 hours there's suggestions of another gale trying to develop east of the Northern Kuril Islands on Sun PM (12/17) with 40 kt west winds and seas building. On Mon AM (12/18) 40-45 kt west winds are to be pushing off the Northern Kuril's and Kamchatka with a front on the dateline generating 32 ft seas at 48N 168E somewhat targeting Hawaii. In the evening west winds to fade from 35+ kts from Kamchatka to the dateline with 33 ft seas at 50N 170E aimed east targeting North CA (308 degrees) but shadowed by the Aleutians relative to the Pacific Northwest. Sideband energy radiated towards Hawaii. This system is to be gone by Tues AM (12/19).


South Pacific

Beyond 72 hours no swell producing weather system nor fetch is forecast.

More details to follow...

 

MJO Holding Active - Possibly to Rebuild

The Madden Julian Oscillation is a periodic weather cycle that tracks east along the equator circumnavigating the globe. It is characterized in it's Inactive Phase by enhanced trade winds and dry weather over the part of the equator it is in control of, and in it's Active Phase by slackening if not an outright reversing trade winds while enhancing precipitation. The oscillation occurs in roughly 20-30 day cycles (Inactive for 20-30 days, then Active for 20-30 days) over any single location on the planet, though most noticeable in the Pacific. During the Active Phase in the Pacific the MJO tends to support the formation of stronger and longer lasting gales resulting in enhanced potential for the formation of swell producing storms. Prolonged and consecutive Active MJO Phases in the Pacific help support the formation of El Nino. During the Inactive Phase the jet stream tends to split resulting in high pressure and less potential for swell producing storm development. Wind anomalies in the Kelvin Wave Generation Area (KWGA) are key for understanding what Phase the MJO is in over the Pacific. The KWGA is located on the equator from 135E-170W and 5 degs north and south (or on the equator from New Guinea east to the dateline). West wind anomalies in the KWGA suggest the Active Phase of the MJO in the Pacific, and east anomalies suggests the Inactive Phase. In turn the Active Phase strengthens and the Inactive Phase weakens the jetstream, which in turn enhances or dampens storm production respectively in the Pacific.The paragraphs below analyze the state of the MJO in the Pacific and provide forecasts for MJO activity (which directly relate to the potential for swell production).

Overview: La Nina started developing in early 2016, but westward displaced and generally weak. And by March 2017, it was gone with suspicious warming developing along South America and over the Galapagos to a point south of Hawaii. By May the atmosphere returned to a neutral configuration but then in July east anomalies started building in the KWGA and have not stopped, with cold water upwelling over the the Nino1.2 and 3.4 areas, indicative of La Nina. So it appears now a double dip La Nina is setting up and is to continue through the Winter and Spring of 2017-2018.

KWGA/Equatorial Surface Wind Analysis & Short-term Forecast:
Analysis (TAO Buoys): As of Tues (12/12) 5 day average winds were from the east over the entire equatorial Pacific but west in the Central Kelvin Wave Generation Area. Anomalies were neutral over the East Pacific and light easterly over the Central Pacific then modest westerly over the Western KWGA.
1 Week Forecast (GFS Model): (12/13) Strong east anomalies were modeled over the Eastern KWGA on the dateline but moderate plus strength westerly anomalies were over the core of the KWGA. This situation is to basically hold for the next week but with the westerly anomalies building to strong strength on 12/16 while east anomalies fade to neutral at the same time and this situation holding through the end of the model run on 12/20. And east anomalies are modeled at 60E (Indian Ocean) starting 12/16, the first time in a few years. The Active Phase of the MJO appears to be holding in the West Pacific and if anything is to strengthen.

Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East

Longer Range MJO/WWB Projections:  
OLR Models: As of 12/12 a weak Active/Wet signal was in the West Pacific reaching east to the dateline. The statistical model depicts the Active/Wet Phase easing east making it to the dateline 10 days out the fading to neutral at day 15. The dynamic model depicts the Active/Wet signal holding over the West Pacific and if anything getting stronger a week out and holding through the end of the model run 15 days out.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS): (12/13) The ECMF model depicts the Active Phase of the MJO weak over the West Pacific and is to restrengthen while slowly pushing east towards the Central Pacific 2 weeks. The GEFS model suggests the Active Phase is to rebuild also holding in the West Pacific holding at moderate strength through the end of the model run.
40 day Upper Level Model: (12/13) This model depicts a modest Active/Wet MJO pattern over the West Pacific and slowly easing east pushing into Central America 1/15 becoming incoherent. A modest Inactive/Dry MJO signal is to follow starting in the West Pacific 12/26 and tracking east to the East Pacific through the end of the model run on 1/22/18 (40 days out). Another Active/Wet Phase is to follow in the West Pacific on 1/17. This model runs about 1 week ahead of what happens at the surface.
CFS Model - 3 month (850 mb wind): (12/13) This model depicts a building Wet/Active MJO pattern over the Western KWGA with west anomalies west of the dateline and east anomalies east of there. The Active Phase of the MJO is to push east through 12/26 with decent west anomalies in the KWGA through the period and pushing east of the dateline after that. After that a weak Inactive Phase of the MJO is to reappear 12/27 building over the dateline holding through 1/15/18 with east anomalies forecast mainly from the dateline eastward and west anomalies west of there. Beyond the Active Phase is to take control in the West Pacific 1/13 through the the end of the model run on 3/10/18 with weak west anomalies holding in the KWGA and east anomalies fading in coverage and migrating east. The low pass filter indicates a modest low pressure bias over the extreme west KWGA and it is to ease east filling 75% of the KWGA by 1/28 and holding there. A high pressure bias is over the East KWGA at 170E and is to move east into the East Pacific and only 15% remaining in the KWGA by Feb 1 and tracking east from there. If this verifies, the underpinnings of La Nina are to be fading and then gone by late December. This suggest that as winter builds (typically the peak of La Nina in the jan timeframe), support for La Nina is to be fading. But it takes 3 months for the ocean to respond to whatever happens in the atmosphere, so this winter is lost to La Nina regardless of what the low pass filter indicates. No significant oceanic change is expected until likely early April 2018. Even at that it will take about 5 years for the Pacific to recharge from the 2014-16 El Nino before another El Nino develops. So a neutral ENSO pattern is likely to develop.

CFSv2 3 month forecast for 850 mb winds, MJO, Rossby etc

Subsurface Waters Temps
TAO Array: (12/13) A pattern change set up in August, with warm water retreating to the west and cooler water building in the east. Today in the far West Pacific water temps are 30 degs in the far West Pacific at 165E. The 28 deg isotherm line is holding at 179W and steep (meaning there is a headwind of cooler water pushing into it from the east). The 24 deg isotherm was weak and has pushed east to 133W and shallow at 50 meters deep at 140W. Anomaly wise it is clear that in the East Pacific warm water gone and instead neutral to modestly negative temperatures are at the surface and down to -2 degs C down 150 meters filling the area between Central America to 170W indicative of La Nina. Warm anomalies are isolated to the West Pacific at +2.0 degrees down to 100 meters deep with the dividing line between cool temps retrograded west to 170W. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 12/9 depicts a large area of cool water filling the subsurface East Pacific (-4.0 degs) and erupting to the surface in broad pockets between Ecuador to 170W with a near neutral temperature pattern in the west.
Sea Level Anomalies: (12/9) Negative anomalies are in control at -5 cms over the entire equatorial East Pacific with a core of -10 cm anomalies present between the Galapagos to 150W with no breaks.

Surface Water Temps: The more warm water in the equatorial East Pacific means more storm production in the North Pacific during winter months (roughly speaking). Cold water in that area has a dampening effect. Regardless of what the atmospheric models and surface winds suggest, actual water temperatures are a ground-truth indicator of what is occurring in the ocean. All data is from blended infrared and microwave sensors.
Satellite Imagery
Hi-res Nino1.2 & 3.4: (12/12) The latest images (1.2 3.4) indicate a cool pattern remains is in control. Upwelling is building again solidly along Peru and Ecuador tracking west on the equator out to 160W with a well defined cool pool evidenced over the entire region. No warm anomalies are indicated within 3+ degs north or south of the equator over the entire region.
Hi-res 7 day Trend (12/12): A warming trend was still in place along Peru and in some pockets on the equator out to 140W. But there were also pockets of cooling water interspersed along the equatorial Pacific from the Galapagos west to 140W.
Hi-res Overview: (12/12) Regardless of the short term warming trend indicated above, a clear La Nina cool stream is present starting off Southern Chile and up the coast of Peru and Ecuador then building in coverage pushing west over the Galapagos and building out to 180W and stable. Cool water at depth is erupting to the surface with the breach point near the Galapagos. There is no sign of warm anomalies in the Nino 1.2 or Nino3.4 regions. A mature La Nina has evolved.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (12/13) Today's temps were steady at -1.344. The lowest point so far in this La Nina was -2.248 degs reached on 11/5. And that low point was lower than the previous coldest point reached on 10/11 at -1.9 degs.
Nino 3.4 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (12/13) Today temps were inching up but still well negative at -0.762 degs. On (12/7) temps hit a new record low at -1.219, just below the previous coldest peak so far this La Nina on 11/22 at -1.156. And the third previous low peak was reached at -1.1 on 11/23. The long arc suggests a solidifying cold pattern. La Nina is in control.

Click for Full Sized Image

CFSV2 Forecast for Nino3.4 SST Anomalies

SST Anomaly Projections
CFSv2 Uncorrected Data (12/13) The forecast depicts temps at -0.75 in early Nov falling to to -1.0 degs on Dec 1 and holding into early Feb. Then a weak upward trend is suggested with temps reaching -0.75 in April and -0.5 degs in July 2018 and holding there. This suggests a legit La Nina is expected for the Winter of 2017-2018 and possibly extending into 2018-2019.
IRI Consensus Plume: The mid-Nov Plume updated (12/8) depicts temps bottomed out at -0.7 in early Nov and are to hold into Dec then slowly rising, to +0.0 in May and +0.3 in July2018. See chart here - link  The NMME consensus for Nov average indicates temps -0.9 degrees below normal Nov-Jan 2018 then rebounding to normal in April. It looks like La Nina is peaking out now. The CFSv2 is now in the middle of that pack.

Atmospheric Coupling (Indicating the presence of El Nino in the atmosphere driven by the ocean):
Southern Oscillation Index (12/13): The daily index was holding negative today -5.24 today. The 30 day average was falling from +9.53. The 90 day average was falling at +8.67. This suggests La Nina is in control.
ESPI (like SOI but based on satellite confirmed precipitation. Positive is good, negative bad): (12/13) The index was falling at -1.65 (up from -2.20 on 6/28/17). The trend is generally stable for now but clearly indicative of La Nina. Last years La Nina reached -1.94 on 11/2/16 so we've bested that already. But the recent upward trend is offering some hope. Still it looks like La Nina is returning for a double dip/2 year La Nina (not unusual). This index is a forerunner of what happens in the ocean by 2-3 months in developing El Nino and La Nina events.

Pacific Decadal Oscillation: The PDO is weakly negative, but not as much as one would expect with La Nina in play.
Per NOAAs index recent values (Jan-Dec): Jan 2017 = +0.10, Feb = +0.04, March = +0.12, April=+0.52, May=+0.30, June=+0.19, July= -0.50, Aug= -0.68, Sept = -0.28, Oct=-0.60, Nov = -0.52. This continues to look like the warm phase of the PDO, even with La Nina, because the warm PDO appears to be dampening the effects of La Nina. No consistently negative readings have occurred since Feb 2014
The Washington EDU index (Jan-Dec): Jan 2017 = +0.77, Feb = +0.70, Mar = +0.74, April=+1.12, May=+0.88, June=+0.79, July=+0.10, Aug=0.09, Sept = 0.32, Oct=0.05 . No negative readings have occurred since Dec 2013
The PDO turned from a 16 year negative run (Jan 98-Feb 2014) in early 2014 and has been positive ever since (other than a few months of negative readings in Fall 2016, the result of a turn towards La Nina). Looking at the long term record, it is premature to conclude that we have in-fact turned from the negative phase (La Nina 'like') to the positive phase (El Nino 'like'), but the data strongly suggests that could be a possibility. By the time it is confirmed (4-5 years out), we will be well into it.

See imagery in the ENSO Powertool

****

External Reference Material: El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO), Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), Kelvin Wave

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Local Interest

Stormsurf Video Surf Forecast for the week starting Sunday (12/10): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gUOpuZdEY-k&feature=youtu.be&hd=1
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POWERLINES Night at the OPL - Surf Footage Featuring Mavericks from Powerlines Productions plus live music from 6 to 8 PM- Nov 17, 2017. Video starts at 8:15 PM at the Old Princeton Landing (OPL) in Half Moon Bay/Princeton CA.

Titans of Mavericks on HBO Sports with Bryant Gumbel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=luQSYf5sKjQ

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Mavericks Invitational Pieces Featuring Stormsurf:
http://www.bloomberg.com/video/how-to-predict-the-best-surfing-waves-EsNiR~0xR5yXGOlOq2MqfA.html
http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/surfs-up-for-mavericks-invitational-in-calif/

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Surf Height-Swell Height Correlation Table

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