Saturday, July 20, 2019
- Buoy 233 (Pearl Harbor Entrance)/ Buoy 239 (Lanai) Seas were 3.0 ft @ 6.7 secs with swell 2.2 ft @ 6.5 secs from 160 degrees.
- Buoy 106 (Waimea): Seas were 4.4 ft @ 6.7 secs with swell 3.5 ft @ 6.3 secs from 37 degrees.
- Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 2.8 ft @ 13.7 secs with swell 1.3 ft @ 13.7 secs from 196 degrees. Wind at the buoy was northwest at 4-6 kts. Water temperature 67.8 degs. At Harvest Buoy (071) primary swell was 3.9 ft @ 9.8 secs from 297 degrees. At Santa Monica (028) swell was 1.2 ft @ 14.8 secs from 201 degrees. At Camp Pendleton (043) swell was 1.4 ft @ 13.9 secs from 217 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma (191) swell was 1.9 ft @ 13.8 secs from 199 degrees.
- Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 6.8 ft @ 9.9 secs with swell 4.8 ft @ 9.1 secs from 320 degrees. Wind at the buoy (013) was west at 2-4 kts. Water temp 50.0 degs (013) and 57.6 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.
On Saturday (7/20) in North and Central CA locally generated northwest windswell was producing waves at waist to chest high weak but a little lined up and clean but very soft. Protected breaks were waist to maybe chest high and clean and soft and mushy. At Santa Cruz surf was waist high on the rare sets and clean and organized but slow and soft. In Southern California/Ventura residual southern hemi swell was producing waves at thigh to maybe waist high and clean and sort of lined up when it came. In North Orange Co southern hemi swell was barely present producing waves at waist high with peaks maybe chest high and clean and sort of lined up and soft. South Orange Country's best summertime breaks were getting residual southern hemi swell with set waves to maybe chest high and lined up and clean but slow and weak. North San Diego had surf at waist high on the sets and soft and gutless with a light northwest wind adding some texture on top. Hawaii's North Shore was flat and clean. The South Shore was pretty quiet with occasional sets waves at waist to chest high at best breaks and clean. The East Shore was getting east windswell with waves waist high or so and chopped from moderate east trades.
See QuikCASTs for the 5 day surf overview or read below for the detailed view.
On Saturday (7/20) in California and Hawaii bare minimal residual southern hemi leftover swell was dribbling in from a gale that tracked up along the east side of New Zealand Sun-Mon (7/8) with up to 38 ft seas aimed northeast. Unfortunately there are no clear signs of any swell producing weather systems on the chart in the Southern Hemisphere for the next 7 days.
See all the details below...
SHORT- TERM FORECAST
Current marine weather and wave analysis plus forecast conditions for the next 72 hours
Over the next 72 hours no swell producing fetch is forecast other than local windswell (see below).
On Saturday (7/20) a pressure gradient was barely hanging on over North CA producing north winds at 25 kts limited to Cape Mendocino producing more north windswell at exposed breaks down into Central CA. An eddy flow (south winds) was in control over Central CA. For Hawaii trades were fading fast from 15 kts extending 500 or so nmiles to the east in pockets offering weak odds for windswell production for exposed eastern shores. On Sunday (7/21) north winds are to be fading fast from 20 kts over Cape Mendocino early and down to 15 kts mid-morning producing fading modest windswell pushing south into Central CA with an eddy flow from Bodega Bay southward early. For Hawaii trades are to continue at 15 kts in smaller more dispersed pockets up to 500 nmiles east of the Islands offering only limited support for windswell production. On Monday (7/22) north winds are to be 15 kts limited to a small area off the coast of North CA offering no real odds for windswell production. Trades are to be building for the Hawaiian Islands at 15+ kts up to 1200 nmiles east of all Islands offering improved odds for windswell production there driven by building high pressure 900 nmiles northeast of Hawaii. On Tuesday (7/23) high pressure is to be now be building riding into Central CA too with a weak gradient producing northwest winds at 15-20 kts along all the North and Central CA coast offering some odds for weak short period windswell at exposed breaks. For Hawaii trades to continue at 15-20 kts up to 1500 nmiles east of the Islands early offering continued support for windswell production along exposed east shores.
North Pacific Animations: Jetstream - Surface Pressure/Wind - Sea Height - Surf Height
No tropical weather systems of interest are being monitored at this time.
California Nearshore Forecast
On Saturday (7/20) north winds were blowing at 25 kts over Cape Mendocino with and eddy flow (south winds) building from Bodega Bay southward. On Sunday (7/21) north winds are to be fading from 20 kts kts mainly over Cape Mendocino dropping to 15 kts late afternoon with a weak eddy flow collapsing early over Central CA turning to northwest winds at 10-15 kts later. Monday (7/22) a modest northwest flow is expected over North and Central CA at 10-15 kts all day. Tues (8/23) northwest winds are forecast at 15-20 kts over all nearshore waters of all of North and Central CA. Wednesday (7/24) north winds are to build to 25+ kts over North CA and 20 kts over Central CA nearshore waters. Thurs (7/25) north winds to continue at 25+ kts for all of North CA and 15-20 kts for Central CA. Friday (7/26) north winds are to be 25-30 kts for mainly Cape Mendocino and 15 kts down to Pt Arena. But south of there a light flow is expected at 10 kts or less if not turning to an eddy flow (south winds). Saturday (7/27) north winds to continue at 25+ kts for Cape Mendocino down to Pt Arena with an eddy flow south of there.
Snow Models: http://www.stormsurf.com/mdls/menu_snow.html (Scroll down for resort specific forecasts).
On Saturday (7/20) a well split jetstream flow was in place over most of the South Pacific with the southern branch forming a ridge pushing south under New Zealand at 80 kts reaching down to 65S and nearly over the Ross Ice Shelf then fading over the Southwest Pacific but being reinforced starting at 145W and pushing south to 70S and over Antarctic Ice pushing the remainder of the way through the Southern CA swell window providing no support for gale development in the upper atmosphere. Over the next 72 hours the ridge is to only build and become continuous on Sun (7/21) sweeping east from under New Zealand down at 65S pushing to 70S over the Central South Pacific and fully over Antarctic Ice over the whole of the South Pacific offering no support for gale production. And if anything that ridge is to be reinforced on Tues (7/23) with winds to 140 kts building south of the Southwest Pacific and fully over Antarctica again suppressing support for gale development. Beyond 72 hours starting Wed (7/24) a massive ridging pattern is to continue over the Southwest Pacific with winds to 140 kts down at 160W 73S but with the jet pushing northeast from there possibly building a trough over the far Southeast Pacific with it's apex reaching up to 60S at 120W and barely in the California swell window offering some support for gale formation there. But that trough is to be tracking east pretty fast and out of the California swell window by Thurs (7/25). After that the jet is to settle further south and becoming reinforced by more 130+ kt winds pushing southeast over the Southwest Pacific on Fri (7/26) and sweeping east into Sat (7/27) down at 68S-64S over the entirety of the South Pacific offering no obvious support for gale formation. The Inactive Phase of the MJO appears to be having a strong impact on the jetstream over the South Pacific actively suppressing gale formation for now.
Swell from a gale that developed while tracking up the east coast of New Zealand was all but gone in California and Hawaii. No other swell was in the water pushing northeast.
Over the next 72 hours no swell producing weather systems are forecast.
South Pacific Animations: Jetstream - Surface Pressure/Wind - Sea Height - Surf Height
Marine weather and forecast conditions 3-10 days into the future
Beyond 72 hours no swell producing weather systems are forecast.
On Wednesday (7/24) the gradient is to be building with northwest winds 20-25 kts over North CA waters and 20 kts down over all of Central CA generating moderate raw north local windswell. That fetch is to turn easterly and extend over Hawaii building to near 20 kts near the Islands offering improved support for easterly windswell there. On Thursday (7/25) more of the same is forecast for North and Central CA with northwest winds 25 kts over Cape Mendocino and 20 kts down to a point off Monterey Bay producing more raw windswell. Trades for Hawaii to fade from 15 kts early extending east 600 nmiles still producing some limited east windswell, but down some from days previous and that fetch all but vaporizing later in the day. On Friday (7/26) the gradient is to lift north producing north winds at 25-30 kts over Cape Mendocino reaching south to Pt Arena producing north windswell at exposed breaks down into Central CA but with a bit of an eddy flow (south winds) developing over Central CA. For Hawaii trades to be 10-15 kts from the east up to 600 nmiles east of the Islands likely offering no meaningful windswell production potential. On Saturday (7/27) the gradient is to lift north a little more limited to Cape Mendocino to Pt Arena at 25 kts producing windswell down into Central CA with the eddy flow holding from Bodega Bay southward. East trades are to be building at 15 kts continuous from up to 750 nmiles east of all the Hawaiian Islands offering improved odds for windswell production.
Beyond 72 hours no swell producing fetch of interest is forecast.
Westerly Wind Burst Fading - Regardless It Appears La Nina Is Coming
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 did not stop, 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. In January 2019, those warm waters were fading, but then rebuilt late in Feb associated with Kelvin Wave (#3). But as of early June warm water was fading and the outlook did not favor El Nino come Fall.
LONG-RANGE PACIFIC STORM AND SWELL GENERATION POTENTIAL FORECAST
Summer 2019 = 5.5 (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 weak borderline El Nino condition continue, and assuming a weak ocean-atmospheric coupling holds and ocean temperature anomalies in Nino3.4 hold in the +0.8 deg range, there is good probability for slightly enhanced storm production in the South Pacific during the Northern Hemisphere Summer time months. There is 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 Summer seasons.
KWGA/Equatorial Surface Wind Analysis & Short-term Forecast (KWGA - Kelvin Wave Generation Area - The area 5 degrees north and south of the equator from 170W to 135E)
Analysis (TAO Buoys): As of (7/19) 5 day average winds were solidly from the east over the Eastern equatorial Pacific fading some over the Central Pacific and turning fully westerly at moderate strength over the KWGA. Anomalies were moderately easterly over the East equatorial Pacific turning weakly easterly over the Central Pacific then reversing direction and building to moderate westerly over the KWGA, at Westerly Wind Burst strength.
1 Week Forecast (GFS Model): On (7/20) moderate west anomalies were holding solid over the dateline and therefore in the KWGA. East anomalies were trying to develop in the extreme West KWGA. The forecast is for those west anomalies holding over the dateline through 7/22. then fading and gone by 7/24. At the same time east anomalies were in the extreme West Pacific and forecast to slowly but steadily ease east filling the KWGA at the end of the model run on 7/27. The Inactive Phase of the MJO appears to be building in the KWGA over the next 7 days.
Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East
Longer Range MJO/WWB Projections:
OLR Models: (7/19) A weak Inactive MJO pattern was indicated over the Western KWGA today. The statistic model indicates the the Inactive Phase is to build some 5 days out then fading fast with the Active Phase redeveloping weakly over the West Pacific at day 10, then filling the KWGA at day 15. The dynamic model suggests a slower evolution of the Inactive Phase with it building and filling the KWGA at day 5 moderately strong and holding unchanged through day 15. The models are diametrically opposed to each other. We suspect the dynamic model is correct and the Inactive Phase is to build.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS): (7/20) The statistical model depicts the Active Phase over the Indian Ocean and exceedingly weak and it is forecast to remain that way while slowly easing east over the next 2 weeks but still mostly only over the Eastern Indian Ocean and weak. The GEFS model suggests the same thing initially but not moving east at all, and holding in the West Indian Ocean at day 15.
40 day Upper Level Model (assumed to be a statistical model): (7/20) This model depicts a stronger Active Phase of the MJO over the East Pacific tracking east and moving into Central America on 8/4. A strong version of the Inactive Phase of the MJO is developing in the far West Pacific today and it is to track east moving into Central America on 8/19. After that a modest Active Phase of the MJO is to build in the West Pacific on 8/7 pushing east to the Central Pacific at the end of the model run on 8/29.
4 Week CFS Model (850 mb wind): (7/19) This model depicts a weak Active MJO signal fading over the Dateline today with a concentrated area of modest west anomalies there with weak east anomalies in the far west KWGA reaching east to 150E. East anomalies are to push east through the KWGA on 7/24, then quickly dissipating. The forecast has weak to modest west anomalies rebuilding and filling the KWGA on 7/26 holding through the end of the model run on 8/16. Support for gale development to fade into the end of July, then start rebuilding.
3 Month CFS Model (850 mb wind): (7/20) This model depicts the Active Phase all but gone over the KWGA with weak west anomalies mainly over the dateline and points east of there. The Active Phase and modest westerly anomalies are to be gone on 7/22, with the Inactive Phase weakly developing but with weak west anomalies holding on the dateline 7/25-8/3. After that a weak Active Phase is forecast moving over the KWGA on 8/6 holding through the end of the model run on 10/17 with weak to modest west anomalies filling the entirety of the KWGA. East anomalies are to be be holding over the entirety of the East Pacific over that time frame. The low pass filter continues to indicate a low pressure bias with 1 contour lines in control of the KWGA centered on the dateline reaching east to California. This single remaining contour line is to hold till 8/28 then dissipating and migrating west to the Indian Ocean at the same time and holding through the end of the model run. There is currently no sign of a high pressure bias building over the dateline (in the Pacific) yet. This model indicates that a weak El Nino pattern is to fade in late August and not return, moving towards the Indian Ocean, symptomatic of La Nina. Basically we are moving from a pattern biased towards El Nino to one biased towards ENSO neutral if not La Nina.
CFSv2 3 month forecast for 850 mb winds, MJO, Rossby etc - Alternate link
Subsurface Waters Temps
TAO Array: (7/20) Today in the far West Pacific water temps are 30 degs over a shrinking area reaching east to 175W while the 29 deg isotherm was retrograding at 163W today. The 28 deg isotherm line was retrograding from 150W to 153W today. The 24 deg isotherm previously pushed into Ecuador at 30 meters down, retrograded to 105W, then again pushed into Ecuador down 20 meters on 6/25 but retrograded again on 7/11 from 107W to 117W today. Anomaly wise, gentle warm anomalies are filling the entire subsurface Pacific at +1 degs from the surface to 150 meters down (deepest on the dateline). A pocket of +2 deg anomalies were developing under the dateline today (possible Kelvin Wave #5). +2 degs anomalies previously in the far East Pacific were gone today and barely at 1 degree. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 7/12 indicates warm water from Kelvin Wave #4 has formed a small pocket of warm water under the Central equatorial Pacific from 165E to 125W at +1.0 degs above normal, and shrinking in coverage and shallow reaching down only 90 meters. A small pocket of cool water was drawing up from depth to nearly the surface from 150W to Ecuador. The GODAS animation appears to be 1 week behind the TAO data but also is more detailed and accurately modeled.
Sea Level Anomalies: (7/12) A small pocket of positive anomalies were building under the dateline at +5 cms from 170E to 145W. Otherwise no positive anomalies are indicated over the equatorial Pacific with neutral anomalies over the bulk of the equator and a small area of negative anomalies at -5 cms was over the Galapagos.
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.
Hi-res Nino1.2 & 3.4: (7/19) The latest images (1.2 3.4) indicate modest warm anomalies are weakly present north and south of the equator from Central America west to the dateline. South of the equator cool anomalies previously off Peru and Ecuador had faded and replaced with slightly warm anomalies. But a stream of cooler anomalies were flowing on the equator east to west from Ecuador to 130W suggestive of La Nina. At this time there is only weak indications of El Nino remaining with likely signs of La Nina developing.
Hi-res 7 day Trend (7/19): A clear cooling trend/stream was in-place developing pushing from off Ecuador west to 145W on the equator. Cool pockets were over that area interspersed with a few tiny pockets of warming water, but the cool anomalies were clearly in control. A solid stream of cool water previously streaming west off Africa on the equator is gone now with weak warming temps indicated but with a cooling trend in the Central equatorial Atlantic. In general the trend towards a cooler pattern in the equatorial Pacific is becoming apparent.
Hi-res Overview: (7/19) Warmer than normal water was from Ecuador west over the Galapagos 20 degrees north of the equator and 10 degrees south of it continuing west of there to the dateline. But there is an unmistakable stream of cool water developing on the equator from just off the Peruvian Coast and then solidly from the Galapagos west to 135W indicative of La Nina. And warm temps south of the equator from Peru west to 140W were quickly fading to nearly neutral. El Nino appears to be in retreat and La Nina appears to be developing.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (7/20) Today's temps were steady today but still negative at -0.536 and have been pretty consistently negative since June 1.
Nino 3.4 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (7/20) Today temps were falling steadily today at +0.031 today. The trend has been generally downward since early June.
CFSV2 Forecast for Nino3.4 SST Anomalies
SST Anomaly Projections
CFSv2 Uncorrected Data (7/20) The model indicates a cooling trend has set up with temps falling from +0.50 degs in mid-June and forecast falling to 0.0 degs by late July and down to -0.50 degs Sept 1 then falling through Dec to -0.75 degrees. On Jan 1 2020 temps are to start rebuilding reaching 0.0 degs by April 1 but that seems highly unlikely. Some form of La Nina is likely coming.
IRI Consensus Plume: The June 2019 Plume depicts temps are at +0.60 degs in June, and are to hold in the +0.70 range into November, then fading slightly to +0.65 in February 2020. See chart here - link.
Atmospheric Coupling (Indicating the presence of El Nino in the atmosphere driven by the ocean):
Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) (negative is good, positive bad) (7/20): The daily index was negative today at -2.83, mostly negative the last 35 days. The 30 day average was rising at -14.02. The 90 day average was rising at -8.35, suggesting a neutral ENSO pattern biased towards El Nino (for now).
ESPI Index (like SOI but based on satellite confirmed precipitation. Positive and/or rising is good, negative and/or falling is bad): (April) +0.34, March +1.0, Feb +1.29, Jan +0.193. It is approaching El Nino territory but still indicted mostly 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 -0.43, Sept -0.46, Oct -0.75, Nov -0.78, Dec -0.12, Jan -0.23, Feb -0.55 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
Stormsurf Video Surf Forecast for the week starting Sunday (7/14):
For automatic notification of forecast updates, subscribe to the
Stormsurf001 YouTube channel - just click the 'Subscribe' button below
- - -
Surfer -Shaper Glen Kennedy passed away earlier this month. His memorial paddle out is set for Sunday, July 28th at First Point Malibu at 10 AM. Come celebrate Glen's life.
NBC News - Climate Change and Surfing: https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/climate-change-good-surfing-other-sports-not-so-much-ncna1017131
Stormsurf and Mavericks on HBO Sports with Bryant Gumbel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=luQSYf5sKjQ
Mavericks Invitational Pieces Featuring Stormsurf:
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.
Surf Height-Swell Height Correlation Table