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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: Thursday, January 24, 2019 1:50 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
2.5 - California & 3.5 - 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 1/21 thru Sun 1/27

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   

Continuing Series of Modest Gales Forecast in WPac
MJO to Build

BUOY ROUNDUP
On Thursday, January 24, 2019 :

  • Buoy 233 (Pearl Harbor Entrance)/ Buoy 239 (Lanai): At Barbers Point (238) seas were 5.3 ft @ 15.4 secs with swell 4.3 ft @ 15.1 secs from 313 degrees.
  • Buoy 106 (Waimea): Seas were 9.1 ft @ 15.4 secs with swell 7.5 ft @ 15.1 secs from 309 degrees.
  • Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 5.5 ft @ 10.0 secs with swell 3.0 ft @ 10.1 secs from 258 degrees. Wind at the buoy was north at 6-8 kts. Water temperature 59.7 degs. At Ventura (Buoy 111) swell was 1.1 ft @ 15.4 secs from 263 degrees. At Santa Monica (028) swell was 0.9 ft @ 15.0 secs from 273 degrees. At Oceanside (045) swell was 0.7 ft @ 13.8 secs from 219 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma (191) swell was 1.5 ft @ 16.0 secs from 284 degrees.
  • Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 9.7 ft @ 13.3 secs with swell 5.4 ft @ 12.6 secs from 290 degrees. Wind at the buoy (013) was northwest at 4-6 kts. Water temp 56.5 degs (042).

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 Thursday (1/24) in North and Central CA surf was 1-2 ft overhead and a bit warbled and not super organized but clean and semi-lined with light north-northeast winds. Protected breaks were head high to 1 ft overhead and lined up and reasonably clean but a little soft. At Santa Cruz surf was head high and lined up and clean but with a little intermixed warble but certainly rideable. In Southern California/Ventura surf was waist to chest high and clean and lined up with light northeast winds and looking fun when it comes. In North Orange Co surf was thigh high or so and clean and soft and lined up but breaking on the beach coming from the north. South Orange Country's best summertime breaks were flat and clean. North San Diego surf was flat and clean. Hawaii's North Shore was getting dateline swell with waves 8 ft Hawaiian early and clean and lined up with some bigger sets breaking on outer reefs. The South Shore was thigh high and clean. The East Shore was getting waist high easterly windswell and nearly clean with a light southeast flow in effect.

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

Meteorological Overview
On Thursday (1/24) Dateline swell was hitting both California and Hawaii but larger in Hawaii given it's closer proximity to the storm center. This system developed between Japan and the Dateline on Sun (1/20) with 37 ft seas aimed southeast briefly towards Hawaii then quickly faded, with secondary energy redeveloping nearer the dateline on Tues (1/22) with 33 ft seas aimed east. And another gale briefly developed just west of the dateline Tues (1/22) with 28-30 ft seas aimed east. Another small gale is to track off Japan on Fri-Sat (1/26) with 33 ft seas aimed east. And maybe another is to develop off Japan tracking northeast on Sun (1/27) with 37 ft seas aimed east initially then moving to the north dateline region Mon (1/28) with up to 40 ft seas aimed east. And another small system is to track off Japan Tues-Wed (1/30) with 38 ft seas fading on the dateline on Thurs (1/31). All these systems to be generally small in coverage. We're in the Inactive Phase of the MJO for another few days, waiting for the Active Phase to reappear, and so a rather modest and West Pacific focused pattern is to be expected.

See all the details below...

 

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

North Pacific

Overview
Jetstream
On Thursday AM (1/24) the jetstream remained well consolidated tracking east off Japan on the 34N latitude line with winds to 190 kts reaching over the dateline then fading and splitting at 155W producing only weak trough just off Hawaii and just west of the dateline offering only limited support for gale development. East of there the jet was split with most energy in the northern branch and lifting northeast pushing into Alaska with the southern branch falling southeast moving to the equator and supporting high pressure development taking over the Gulf of Alaska. Over the next 72 hours into Sun (1/27) more of the same is forecast but with winds fading slightly in the consolidated portion of the jet to the 170-180 kt range forming a building trough mid-way between Japan and the dateline offering better support for gale development there. But on Sun (1/27) there's also some sense that the split point might retrograde moving to 175W with the northern branch peeling off pushing up over the Central Aleutians presumably due to less energy in the jet. Beyond 72 hours that situation is to be remedied with winds building in the jet in the west over and just off Japan to 210 kts on Wed (1/30) reaching east and feeding the still present trough now repositioned on the dateline and offering decent support for gale development there. And better yet the split point is to move to 150W suggesting a westward push of high pressure over and off California possibly driven by the Active Phase of the MJO setting up in the far West Pacific. The storm door for the US West Coast is still to be closed, but it could be getting closer.

Surface Analysis
On Thursday (1/24) swell a gale west of the dateline was hitting California and Hawaii (see Dateline Gale below) and swell energy from another gale in the Northwest Gulf was also mixed in and hitting California (see Northwest Gulf Gale below).

Over the next 72 hours another small gale is to start building off Japan on Thurs PM (1/24) with 40-45 kt northwest winds and seas building to 29 ft at 37.5N 157E aimed east. 40-45 kt west winds are to migrate east-northeast on Fri AM (1/25) with 32 ft seas at 39.5N 166.5E targeting Hawaii well. In the evening the gale is to lift northeast and fade with west winds 40 kts and seas fading from 32 ft at 41.5N 174E aimed east. The gale is to dissipate from there with 30 kt west winds south of the Aleutians Sat AM (1/26) with 27 ft seas fading at 43N 178W aimed east. Something to monitor.

And another southward displaced gale is to develop off Japan on Sun AM (1/27) with 40-45 kt west winds over a small area and seas 33 ft at 32.5N 156E aimed east. In the evening the gael is to build rapidly while lifting northeast with 45+ kt northwest winds approaching the dateline with seas 30 ft at 40N 162E aimed east. The storm is to lift northeast over the dateline Mon AM (1/28) with 45-50 kt northwest winds and seas trying to rebuild from 39 ft at 41.5N 169E aimed southeast. In the evening this system to lift north approaching the the Western Aleutians producing 45 kt northwest winds just south of the Aleutians with seas building to 41 ft at 45.5N 174E aimed east. Fetch to be fading some Tues AM (1/29) from 45 kts with seas fading from 36 ft over a small area embedded in a broad area of 30+ ft seas at 48N 171E aimed east. The gale to dissipate after that.

 

Northwest Gulf Gale
A tiny gale developed in the extreme Northwestern Gulf of Alaska Sun AM (1/20) producing 45 kt west winds over a small area aimed east with 37 ft seas at 45.5N 167.5W. The gale lifted north some in the evening making no eastward headway with winds fading from 40 kts and seas 31 ft lifting north at 48.5W 165.5W. The gale dissipated after that.

North CA: Combo energy holding Thursday (1/24) at 6.5 ft @ 13-14 secs (8.5 ft). Swell fading Fri (1/25) from 4.4 ft @ 12-13 secs (6.0 ft) and getting overriding by new swell. Swell Direction: 292-298 degrees

 

Dateline Gale
Also a gale started building off North Japan on Sat PM (1/19) producing 45-50 kt northwest winds over a moderate area with seas 34 ft at 41N 160E targeting Hawaii well. By Sun AM (1/20) the gale was fading fast with 35 northwest winds over a decent sized area and seas fading from 33 ft at 38N 167E. By evening this system was gone with seas from previous fetch fading from 26 ft at 38N 177E aimed east.

Mon AM (1/21) secondary winds energy was building mid-way between japan and the dateline with 40 kt west winds and seas building from 27 ft at 37N 166E. In the evening 45 kt west winds to push to the dateline with 33 ft seas at 37.5N 179W aimed east. On Tues AM (1/22) the gale was fading while lifting northeast with 35-40 kt west winds and seas fading from 31 ft at 38.5N 170W. This system dissipated from there.

Hawaii: Combo swell fading on Thurs (1/24) from 7.0 ft @ 15 secs (10.5 ft). Swell fading Fri (1/25) from 4.6 ft @ 13-14 secs (6.0 ft) and getting overridden by new secondary energy building to 6.2 ft @ 15 secs (9.0 ft). Swell fading Sat (1/26) from 5.6 ft @ 13-14 secs. Residuals on Sun (1/27) fading from 3.2 ft @ 12-13 secs (4.0 ft). Swell Direction 307-312 degrees moving to 315 degrees

North CA: Expect swell arrival on Fri (1/25) overriding previous swell to 4.1 ft @ 16-17 secs (6.5 ft). Swell fading on Sat (1/26) from 4.9 ft @ 14-15 secs (7.0 ft). Secondary swell building Sun (1/27) at 4.8 ft @ 15-16 secs (7.0 ft). Swell fading Mon (1/28) at 4.6 ft @ 14 secs (6.0-6.5 ft). Dribbles on Tues (1/29) 3.4 ft @ 12-13 secs (4.0 ft). Swell Direction: 290 degrees

 

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

 

Tropical Update
No tropical weather systems of interest are forecast.

California Nearshore Forecast
On Thursday AM (1/24) high pressure was ridging inland over the Pacific Northwest with north winds 15-20 kts early off the North and Central Coast but lighter nearshore and more northeasterly and forecast to lighten as the day continues over outer waters. Fri (1/25) high pressure is to be pushing inland over the Pacific Northwest Coast with a 10 kt northeasterly flow over the entire state. More of the same is forecast Sat (1/26) into early Sun (1/27) then winds turning north in the afternoon at 10 kts for North and Central CA. Weak north winds to continue Mon (1/28) at 10 kts and up to 15 kts near Point Conception. More of the same on Tues (1/29) with north winds 5 kts but up to 15 kts near Point Conception. More of the same Wed-Thurs (1/31). And low low pressure is to start building off the North Coast at that time offering a hint of precipitation beyond.

Total snow accumulation for for the week for Lake Tahoe (thru 1/30): 0 inches and 0 inches for Mammoth. High pressure is in control.

Snow Models: http://www.stormsurf.com/mdls/menu_snow.html (Scroll down for resort specific forecasts).

 

South Pacific

Overview
Surface Analysis  
No swell of interest was in the water.

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 another small storm is to start building off Japan on Tues AM (1/29) tracking east with 55 kt northwest winds and seas 30 ft at 35N 151E aimed southeast. In the evening the storm is to track east with 50 kt northwest winds and seas 36 ft at 33N 158.5E aimed southeast. The storm is to fade to gale status Wed AM (1/30) with 40+ kt northwest winds and seas 36 ft near 35N 165E aimed southeast at Hawaii. In the evening the gale is to fade while lifting northeast with 40 kts northwest winds and seas 34 ft at 38N 170E aimed southeast. The gale to dissipate from there.

And yet another gale is to form mid-way between japan and the dateline Thurs PM (1/31) with 40 kt west winds and seas 30 ft at 39N 162E aimed east.

 

South Pacific

Beyond 72 hours no swell producing weather systems of interest are forecast.

 

MJO/ENSO Forecast

 

Active MJO Possibly Building

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. A double dip La Nina was in control and continued through the Winter of 2017-2018. But warming started building along the South and Central American coast in early March 2018 associated with two upwelling Kelvin Waves, and continued trying to build over equatorial waters over the Summer and Fall, but not enough to declare El Nino and not coupled with the atmosphere. As of January 2019, those warm waters were fading.

LONG-RANGE PACIFIC STORM AND SWELL GENERATION POTENTIAL FORECAST
Fall/Winter 2018 = 6.0 (California & Hawaii)
Rating based on a 1-10 scale: 1 being the lowest (small and infrequent surf conditions), 5 being normal/average, and 10 being extraordinary (frequent events of large, long period swells)

Rationale: Assuming the PDO has moved to the warm phase and that El Nino does not develop as strong as previously forecast, and assuming and an ocean-atmospheric coupling becomes weakly established in the January timeframe and ocean temperature anomalies in Nino3.4 build to the +0.6 deg range, there is good probability for slightly enhanced storm production in the North Pacific starting in the late Nov timeframe (specifically the Gulf of Alaska and Dateline regions) with slightly increased intensity in number of storm days and storm intensity, resulting in slightly increased odds for larger than normal swell, with increased duration and higher than normal period. This should be significantly better than the past 2 winter seasons.

KWGA/Equatorial Surface Wind Analysis & Short-term Forecast:
Analysis (TAO Buoys): As of (1/23) 5 day average winds were from the east over the Eastern equatorial Pacific to the dateline, then a little weaker mainly over the Southern KWGA. Anomalies were neutral to light east over the East equatorial Pacific turning neutral over the KWGA.
1 Week Forecast (GFS Model): On (1/24) modest east anomalies were limited to the immediate dateline with modest west anomalies holding in the remainder of the KWGA and east of the dateline. The forecast is for west anomalies building for the next 5 days over the entirety of the KWGA and reaching moderate status generally filling the KWGA at the end of the model run on 1/31. Support for storm development to be weak to modest for the next 3 days, then rebuilding to moderate strength mainly in the West Pacific.

Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East

Longer Range MJO/WWB Projections:  
OLR Models: (1/23) The Inactive Phase of the MJO was moving out of the KWGA with the Active Phase building over the West Pacific. The statistic model indicates the Active Phase is to build and pushing east into the West Pacific at day 5 and taking over the KWGA at day 8 and holding through day 15. The dynamic model indicates the same thing but wit the Active Phase weaker at day 8-15 and not moving east nearly as fast, still centered in the core of the KWGA at day 15.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS): (1/24) The ECMF model depicts the Active Phase of the MJO was modest over the Eastern Maritime Continent. It is to move east while building to moderate strength moving into the West Pacific 2 days out then weakening and stationary over the West Pacific through day 15. The GEFS model suggests the same thing but with the Active Phase maybe rebuilding in the West Pacific at days 10-15.
40 day Upper Level Model: (1/21) No update today - This model depicts a very weak Active Phase over the far West Pacific slowly and weakly pushing east moving in to the East Pacific and over Central America on 2/14. A modest Inactive signal is to set up in the West Pacific on 2/9 moving to the East Pacific on 3/2.
4 Week CFS Model (850 mb wind): (1/23) This model depicts moderate west anomalies fading over the far West KWGA with east anomalies building over the dateline. West anomalies are to be gone by 1/26 with east anomalies taking control of the core of the KWGA till about 1/29 while west anomalies slowly start building on the dateline and backfilling west into the KWGA on 2/4 filling it and holding till the end of the model run on 2/20.
3 Month CFS Model (850 mb wind): (1/24) This model depicts the Inactive Phase of the MJO fading in the core of the KWGA today and gone by 1/28 with modest east anomalies on the dateline then fading by 1/28. By 2/1 no MJO signal is indicated with west anomalies backfilling west from east of the dateline and into the core of the KWGA. A weak to neutral MJO signal to continue in the KWGA for the foreseeable future but with west anomalies slowly building in the KWGA on 2/10 and getting progressively more solid in coverage through the end of the model run through 4/23. The low pass filter indicates a low pressure bias is fully in control of the KWGA centered on the dateline reaching east over California and forecast holding over California through 2/14, then retracting some. A third contour line faded 12/17 and is to start rebuilding on 3/14 and holding through the end of the model run. It appears from this model that a tendency towards El Nino was previously in control and is to continue, but far weaker. Theoretically the atmosphere and ocean were at one time trying to become coupled towards El Nino in the Pacific Ocean, but there's no objective evidence that it every happened. Still this pattern is more favorable to support storm production in the Pacific regardless of whether El Nino develops, because the atmosphere is still turning from a La Nina pattern (that has been entrenched for the past 2 years) at a minimum towards a neutral one. Our assumption is a normal Winter pattern will result, or perhaps slightly enhanced, but nothing more.

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

Subsurface Waters Temps
TAO Array: (1/24) Today in the far West Pacific water temps are 30 degs and steady (after previously reaching east to 175W on 12/11) reaching east today to 178E. The 28 deg isotherm line had retrograded west to 160W mid-Nov, then moved east and walled up to 153W, but retrograded and is back at 166W today. The 24 deg isotherm was pushing into Ecuador 25 meters down. Anomaly wise, warm anomalies are filling the entire subsurface Pacific at +1 degs or greater with a pocket of warm water building under the dateline at +3 degs (Kelvin Wave #3) and the remnants of Kevin Wave #2 pushing east in the far East Pacific from 125W and points east at +2 degs. We were thinking the peak of the Kelvin Wave cycle for this supposed El Nino has already occurred associated with Kelvin Wave #2, but upwelling over Ecuador looks poised to continue nonstop for the next 3+ months with the development of Kelvin Wave #3. So there's good surface oceanic warming potential to feed jetstream core energy through the entirety of the 2018/2019 winter cycle. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 1/18 indicates Kelvin Wave #2 fading in the East Pacific with pockets of 3 degs from 130W into Ecuador and with +3 deg anomalies building in the west from New Guinea to the dateline (Kelvin Wave #3 attributable to a Westerly Wind Burst occurring there 12/30-1/16). +1-2 degs anomalies connect the 2 Kelvin Waves making a rives of warm water traversing the width of the equatorial Pacific. The GODAS animation appears to be 1 week behind the TAO data but also is more detailed and accurately modeled.
Sea Level Anomalies: (1/18) Positive anomalies were from the interior Maritime Continent tracking east into Ecuador at mostly 0-5 cms but with a pocket of +10 cms anomalies over the dateline and +5 cm anomalies near 120W. A new weak Kelvin Wave is building north of New Guinea while a previous warm subsurface pattern is fading over the east equatorial Pacific.

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: (1/23) The latest images (1.2 3.4) indicate temps were very weakly warm straddling 5 degrees north and south of the equator from the dateline west to Ecuador with a pocket of moderately warmer water from 110W to Ecuador (but less warm than days past). Warm water that was previously fading along the coast of Chile and Peru up into Ecuador was steady today. Weak generic warming was off Central America and Mexico and fading some today in coverage and intensity. There is no indications that an El Nino is building and it appears a warm pulse previously underway in the East Pacific was fading some. A concerning pocket of cool waters elongated east to west off Peru to 130W has gained intensity extending west from 120W previously to 137W today. Overall the pattern looks somewhat like El Nino, but nothing more than a very weak El Nino. In all this supposed El Nino is weak and becoming more fragile by the day.
Hi-res 7 day Trend (1/23): A building area of weak warm water was off Peru and a small pockets of moderate cooling was developing extending west along the equator between the Galapagos to 110W. It looks like the far equatorial East Pacific is warming some.
Hi-res Overview: (1/23) Weak warm water was along the immediate coast of Chile and Peru. But more important, moderate warm water was on the equator from Ecuador over the Galapagos continuing out to the dateline. We have turned the corner from a cool regime a year ago to a warm regime. And one could maybe think we are moving towards an El Nino pattern just looking at the surface temps. But that would be a false conclusion because the warm signal on the surface should be much stronger at this time of the year if El Nino were truly developing. We are in an ENSO neutral pattern biased warm and likely not every moving to an official minimal El Nino status this winter.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (1/24) Today's temps were falling at +0.563 after rising to a peak +1.385 on 1/21. Previously there were down to -0.44 on 12/25, and that after having risen to +1.265 on 12/20. Previously temps fell to +0.212 on 12/3, after having previously built to +1.534 on 11/27. That peak on 11/27 was the all time high for this event in this region.
Nino 3.4 Daily CDAS Index Temps:
(1/24) Today temps were falling at +0.330 after rising to a peak at +0.738 on 1/21, after being at +0.487 on 1/7 and after previously risen to +1.050 degs on 12/6 and previously in the +0.5-+0.6 range since 11/12. The all time high for this event was +1.45 on 11/5, beating the previous peak temps of +0.795 on 10/9, and +0.649 on 9/27, and that beating the previous peak at +0.490 on 7/2.

Click for Full Sized Image

CFSV2 Forecast for Nino3.4 SST Anomalies

SST Anomaly Projections
CFSv2 Uncorrected Data (1/23) The model indicates temps were at +0.65 degs on Jan 1 and are forecast building to +0.95 on Feb1 and stable for the foreseeable future if not rising to +1.0 degs in June holding if not rising to +1.1 degs in Aug and holding till Oct 1. If one is to believe the model then one would assume that El Nino is to build in the Winter of 18/19. But given all the data we've seen, we believe there no odds of El Nino developing. But maybe a multiyear warming event is in progress suggested by this model.
IRI Consensus Plume: The mid-Nov Plume depicts temps are to slowly rise from here, to +1.00 degs in November and +1.0-+1.1 degs through Feb 2019, then slowly fading to 0.71 in July. See chart here - link. There's a 90% chance of a weak El Nino developing through January.

Atmospheric Coupling (Indicating the presence of El Nino in the atmosphere driven by the ocean):
Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) (negative is good, positive bad) (1/24): The daily index was steady at +3.77. The 30 day average was steady at -1.14 suggesting a neutral MJO. The 90 day average was rising some at +2.95, rising through Jan1 to +4.67 then fading some after that but not much. There is no indication that El Nino is present in the atmosphere.
ESPI Index (like SOI but based on satellite confirmed precipitation. Positive and/or rising is good, negative and/or falling is bad): (1/24) The index rose to +0.30 on 1/20, but has been falling recently to +0.19 today, up from -0.24 in late December, down from +0.28 on 12/15 and not anywhere near as strongly positive as it should be if El Nino were developing. It suggest only ENSO neutral conditions.
Pacific Decadal Oscillation: The PDO is weakly positive, even though La Nina is in play.
Per NOAAs index recent values: June 2017 +0.21, July -0.50, Aug -0.62, Sept -0.25, Oct -0.61, Nov -0.45, Dec -0.13, Jan 2018 +0.29, Feb -0.19, Mar -0.61, April -0.89, May -0.69, June -0.85, July -0.09, Aug -0.42, Sept -0.42. 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 solid negative readings have occurred since Feb 2014
The Washington/JISAO index (Jan-Dec): June 2017 +0.79, July +0.10, Aug +0.09, Sept +0.32, Oct +0.05, Nov +0.15, Dec +0.50, Jan +0.70. Feb +0.37, Mar -0.05, April +0.11, May +0.11, June -0.04, July +0.11, Aug +0.18, Sept +0.09. No real 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


Powerlinessurf Jeff Clark Inside Mavericks

Local Interest

Stormsurf Video Surf Forecast for the week starting Sunday (1/20):
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Powerline Productions New Movie Preimer - Next Level - Friday (11/9) at 7 PM. Details here: http://www.stormsurf.com/page2/forecast/forecast/NextLevel.html

- - -

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

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/

Time Zone Converter By popular demand we've built and easy to use time convert that transposes GMT time to whatever time zone you are located. It's ion left hand column on every page on the site near the link to the swell calculator.

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Surf Height-Swell Height Correlation Table

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