Friday, February 24, 2017
- Buoy 106 (Waimea): Seas were 5.7 ft @ 13.3 secs with swell 3.2 ft @ 13.1 secs from 328 degrees.
- Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 4.2 ft @ 11.4 secs with swell 2.9 ft @ 10.3 secs from 269 degrees. Wind north 4-6 kts. Water temperature 58.3 degs. At Ventura swell was 3.3 ft @ 9.5 secs from 278 degrees. At Santa Monica swell was 2.5 ft @ 8.9 secs from 268 degrees. At Camp Pendleton swell was 2.1 ft @ 8.6 secs from 262 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma swell was 4.7 ft @ 8.6 secs from 277 degrees.
- Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 7.5 ft @ 8.3 secs with swell 5.3 ft @ 8.6 secs from 305 degrees. Wind northwest 12-14 kts at the buoy. Water temp 54.0 degs.
46006, 46059, New! Hi-Res Buoy Dashboards (at the 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 Friday (2/24) in North and Central CA residual Gulf windswell was producing waves in the head high range and clean but warbled, weak and ill formed at exposed breaks. At Santa Cruz surf was thigh to waist high and weak with westerly texture running through it. In Southern California up north residual Gulf swell was producing waves in the waist to chest high range and lined up and clean with light offshore's making for some fun small waves. In North Orange Co surf was flat and clean. In San Diego surf was chest to maybe head high and clean but a bit warbled and rideable but nothing more. Hawaii's North Shore was getting leftover energy from the first of two gale that tracked through the West Pacific with waves chest head high or so and clean and lined up but with some northeast warble running through it. The South Shore was flat and clean. The East Shore was getting wrap around northwest swell with waves waist high and chopped from trades.
See QuikCASTs for the 5 day surf overview or read below for the detailed view.
On Friday (2/24) one more swell from a broader gale that developed off Japan on Tues (2/21) with 34 ft seas racing northeast and fading on Wed (2/22) over the North Dateline region was pushing towards Hawaii and weakly towards California. Beyond that virtually no solid swell producing weather systems are forecast for the next 7 days with a heavily .cgiit jetstream pattern in control.
SHORT- TERM FORECAST
Current marine weather and wave analysis.cgius forecast conditions for the next 72 hours
On Friday AM (2/24) the jetstream was pushing off Japan at 150 kts then .cgiit half way to the dateline with the northern branch tracking northeast over the intersection of the dateline and the Aleutian through the Southern Bering Sea and into Alaska while the southern branch tracked east over the dateline falling southeast over Hawaii and then into Northern Baja. No troughs were indicated offering no support for gale development. Over the next 72 hours this pattern is to only get more entrenched with the northern branch following a similar path before maybe falling south landlocked down the Canadian and US West Coasts. Dead air is to set up between it and the southern branch which is to be falling southeast over Hawaii and then east into Baja meaning high pressure is to set up between the two branch's from the dateline eastward. No troughs are indicated. Beyond 72 hours more of the same is expected only worse with the .cgiit on the dateline fading on Mon (2/27) but then redeveloping even further west on Thurs (3/2) just off Japan pushing north over the Kuril's and never even entering the North Pacific. Of some note, the southern branch is to be more energetic running flat east off Southern Japan on Fri (3/3) to a point just north of Hawaii at 140-150 kts, then lifting gently northeast and loosing energy pushing into the Pacific Northwest. It almost looks like if the one peel-off of energy over the Kuril's were to fade, we'd be back in business. For now it appears the Inactive Phase of the MJO is taking control of the North Pacific and weakening the jet, causing the .cgiit. So we'll have to be patient. Time to focus on something other than surfing and snow.
On Friday (2/24) swell from a gale that developed in the West Pacific was fading in Hawaii and California (see West Pacific Gale below). Another swell from the same region is behind it (see Second West Pacific Gale below). A gale is racing northeast just off Kamchatka producing 45 kt south winds aimed at only the Western Aleutians generating 24 ft seas aimed up the same heading, and offering nothing of interest for our forecast area.
Over the next 72 hours no swell producing weather systems are forecast. High pressure is starting to develop in the Gulf of Alaska Fri (2/24) building to 1044 mbs on Saturday with 2 cutoff lows forming south of it (one north of Hawaii and the other off Central CA). The one off CA is to dissipate well off the coast on Sun (2/26) while the one north of Hawaii fades and tracks northwest. The one off California is to produce up to 35 kt west winds, but all aimed north of Hawaii. No swell is to result.
West Pacific Gale
A gale started developing Sun PM (2/19) just west of the dateline lifting northeast fast producing 45-50 kt northwest winds and seas building from 25 ft at 38N 172E somewhat targeting Hawaii. It lifted northeast fast Mon AM (2/20) with winds building to 50 kts from the west just south of the Western Aleutians with 32 ft seas building at 48N 175E targeting mainly the US West Coast. In the evening the core of the gale lifted north into the Bering Sea with 45 kt west winds just south of the Aleutians with 30 ft seas at 42N 177E aimed mainly at the Aleutians with some energy aimed at the US West Coast. By Tues AM (2/21) the gale is to be gone. Possible swell pushing east but well decayed upon arrival on the US West Coast. Not much energy is to be targeting Hawaii.
North CA: Swell arriving Fri afternoon (2/24) building to 2.8 ft @ 15-16 secs late (4.0 ft). Swell peaking on Sat (2/25) afternoon at 4.8 ft @ 14 secs (6.5 ft). Swell fading on Sun (2/26) 3.8 ft @ 13-14 secs (5.0 ft). Swell Direction: 297 degrees
Second West Pacific Gale
A broader gale developed just off Japan Mon PM (2/20) with 45 kt west winds and seas building from 28 ft at 37N 155E. On Tues AM (2/21) 45 kt west winds were racing northeast with seas building to 35 ft at 38N 160E. In the evening the gale was racing northeast with winds 45 kt from the northwest over a small area aimed east with seas fading from 32 ft at 40N 170E. After that this system dissipated with seas from previous fetch fading from 27 ft at 43N 175E. Something to monitor.
Hawaii: Swell arriving Fri sunrise (2/24) building to 4.2 ft @ 17 secs late (7.0 ft). Swell holding into Sat AM (2/25) at 4.8 ft @ 15 secs (7.0 ft) then slowly fading into the afternoon. Residuals on Sun (2/26) fading from 3.8 ft @ 13-14 secs (5.0 ft). Swell fading on Mon (2/27) from 3.8 ft @ 13 secs (5.0 ft). Swell dissipating overnight. Swell Direction: 308-315 degrees
North CA: Expect swell arrival on Sun (2/26) building to 3.4 ft @ 17 secs late (5.5 ft). Swell holding on Mon (2/27) at 4.0 ft @ 15 secs (5.5-6.0 ft). Swell fading on Tues (2/28) from 3.5 ft @ 14-15 secs (5.0 ft). Swell Direction: 297 degrees
North Pacific Animations: Jetstream - Surface Pressure/Wind - Sea Height - Surf Height
No tropical systems of interest are being monitored.
California Nearshore Forecast
On Friday AM (2/24) high pressure was building in centered in the Northern Gulf of Alaska but ridging southeast down to Baja. A cutoff low was 1200 nmiles west of Pt Conception. A backdoor low was over Vancouver Island falling south. Winds were generally light from the north at 10 kts and forecast holding through the day. Light rain expected for Cape Mendocino later in the day falling south with snow showers for higher elevations. Saturday the backdoor low is to get sucked out to sea joining with the low off the CA coast. South winds 10 kts forecast for for North and Central CA by late afternoon from Monterey Bay northward. Rain falling south mainly along the coast to Pt Conception late. Maybe some snow showers for Tahoe with 2 inches of accumulation. Sunday light east winds expected for North and Central CA early turning north 10-15 kts near sunset. Clear skies for North CA with light rain falling from Monterey Bay early southward to San Diego at sunset. No precip for the Sierras. Another backdoor low is to be falling south overnight with light rain and snow for North CA. Monday (2/27) winds to be northwest 10-15 kts mainly north of the Golden Gate building south to Pt Conception in the afternoon. Scattered showers to Monterey bay through the day. Snow showers for the Sierra during the day fading in the evening. Tuesday (2/28) northwest winds 10-15 kts but light for Southern CA. No precip forecast as high pressure takes full control riding into the Oregon-North Ca border. Wednesday (3/1) north winds 15 kts north of Pt Conception building to near 20 kts later. High pressure in control. No change Thurs or Friday (3/3) with high pressure stationary just off then Central CA coast. Everything is driven by the Inactive Phase of the MJO now.
No swell producing fetch of interest is occurring or forecast.
A small gale previously forecast for the Southeast Pacific Wed PM (2/22) produced barely 28 ft seas over a tiny area at 52S 139W aimed northeast then faded into Thurs AM (2/23) with seas dropping from 25 ft at 49S 130W. Small swell to result for Southern CA. Most energy is to be focused on Mexico down to Peru (and small at that).
Southern CA: Expect swell arrival early Tues (2/28) pushing 1.9 ft @ 15-16 secs later (3.0 ft). Swell continues on Wed (3/1) at 2.0 ft @ 14-15 secs early (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell fading on Thurs (3/2) from 2.0 ft @ 14 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell Direction: 190 degrees
North CA: Expect swell arrival late on Tues (2/28) pushing 1.4 ft @ 16-17 secs (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell peaking on Wed (3/1) at 1.8 ft @ 15-16 secs early (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell fading on Thurs (3/2) from 1.9 ft @ 14 secs (2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 188 degrees
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 with a .cgiit jetstream in control.
A cutoff gale is forecast on the dateline Wed AM (3/1) possibly producing 35 kt northwest winds aimed somewhat at Hawaii with seas building to 20 ft at 40N 178E. In the evening fetch is to be falling south and fading from 30-35 kts with 22 ft seas at 37N 177E. From there 25 kt northwest fetch is to track southeast some through Thurs (3/2) aimed better at Hawaii with 17-18 ft seas moving to 30N 179W. Maybe windswell to result for the Islands.
Also a gale is to try and develop in the far Northeast Gulf of Alaska on Tues (2/28) producing 35 kt northwest winds and 20 ft seas at 53N 142W then fading to 30 kts in the evening with seas fading from 20 ft at 51N 140W. Maybe some very north angled swell to result for North CA but most of this fetch is to be east of the swell window for breaks south of Pt Reyes.
Beyond 72 hours no swell producing fetch of interest is forecast.
More details to follow...
Inactive MJO Rules for Now
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.cgianet, 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 .cgiit 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 di.cgiaced and generally weak. And by early 2017, it appears to be fading.
KWGA/Equatorial Surface Wind Analysis & Short-term Forecast:
Analysis (TAO Buoys): As of Thurs (2/23) east winds were solid over the entire equatorial Pacific and the Kelvin Wave Generation Area. Anomalies were modest westerly in pockets over the equatorial East Pacific but modest easterly over the KWGA. La Nina's remnants in the atmosphere have not given up.
1 Week Forecast (GFS Model): Moderately strong east anomalies were modeled over the Kelvin Wave Generation Area attributable to the Inactive Phase of the MJO with weak west anomalies over the far East Pacific (fading remnants of the Active Phase exiting east). The forecast suggests moderate east anomalies are to slowly loose coverage and track east over the Kelvin Wave Generation Area into 3/2. This suggests the Inactive Phase of the MJO is peaking in the KWGA now and is to slowly fade while moving east for he coming week.
Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East
Longer Range MJO/WWB Projections:
OLR Models: As of 2/23 the Inactive Phase of the MJO was building over the West Pacific. The statistic model projects the Inactive Phase holding strength while tracking east over the West Pacific making it to the dateline 2 weeks out and still strong. The dynamic model depicts the same thing initially but continues to hold hope for the Inactive Phase weakening as it moves east and weak if barely discernible on the dateline 2 weeks out.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS): (2/24) The ECMF model indicates the Active Phase of the MJO was moderately strong over the East Indian Ocean and is to track east and loose strength and fade while moving into the West Indian Ocean 2 weeks out. The GEFS model depicts the same thing. This model runs about a week ahead of what occurs down at the surface.
40 day Upper Level Model: (2/24) This model depicts a modest strength Inactive Phase of the MJO was over the dateline and forecast tracking east into Central America 3/11 while holding strength. A very weak Active Phase is to follow in the West Pacific 3/16 reaching to Central America 3/31. A weak Inactive Phase is to follow in the West Pacific starting 3/31. This model runs about 2 weeks ahead of what happens at the surface. The MJO is moving fast but to not be as strong as previously projected.
CFS Model - 3 month (850 mb wind): (2/24) This model depicts the Inactive Phase is building over the West Pacific and to hold control of the KWGA into 3/17 with modest east anomalies over the West Pacific. Beyond a weak Active Phase is to follow 3/19 with weak west anomalies in.cgiay and those anomalies building far stronger by 4/13 and not fading through 5/23. La Nina is to be gone per the low pass filter on 4/13 with El Nino taking hold 4/21.
CFSv2 3 month forecast for 850 mb winds, MJO, Rossby etc
Subsurface Waters Temps
TAO Array: (2/24) Actual temperatures remain stratified with warm water in the West Pacific at 30+ degs C (reaching east to 164E) and the 28 deg isotherm line reaching to 180W and steep, suggesting a hard break between warm water in the west and cool water in the east at depth. 26 degs anomalies reach to the Galapagos over a shallow pool, making a major surge east in the past week. Anomaly wise warm anomalies at +1-2 degs rule from the West Pacific but are no longer pushing east, retracting back west to 170W. Neutral anomalies are east of there to Ecuador except for one small pocket of negative anomalies down 100m at 130W at -1.0 degs but quickly fading and having no footprint on the surface. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 2/17 depicts warm water is building east trying to form a path from the West Pacific to nearly Ecuador at +0.5 degs. La Nina has lost control of the ocean at depth with remaining negative anomalies weakening and getting shallower.
Sea Level Anomalies: (2/17) Negative anomalies at -5.0-10 cm's still control 2 pockets stranding the equator between 100W to 140W and 5 degs north and south. Negative sea levels are snot giving up just yet.
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: (2/23) The latest images (1.2 3.4) indicate warm water dominating the region extending from Northern Chile over Peru and north to Ecuador then extending west over the Galapagos with the warmest anomalies reaching to 110W but with warm anomalies to 160W. One thin pocket of cooler water was positioned extending southwest off Columbia but was rapidly collapsing. Another pocket is along the immediate coast of southern Peru but was not growing. Very warm waters were in control of the entire equatorial East Pacific. La Nina is gone and it looks like an El Nino like pattern is returning, though that seems i.cgiausible.
Hi-res 7 day Trend (2/22): A warming trend is covering water of Chile, Peru and Ecuador extending west 3600 nmiles to 140W even as far south as 35S. It is also building north of the equator off Southern Mexico and Central America and then west over the Galapagos reaching a point south of Hawaii (140W). If anything, a growing warming trend is developing over the equatorial East Pacific with a large footprint.
Hi-res Overview: (2/22) There is no sign of La Nina cool waters from Ecuador west to at least 160W. Instead warmer than normal water is in.cgiay over that entire region. The only real remnants of La Nina are from 160W-170E and even those appear to be in collapse and heading west. La Nina is dead and it's remnants are loosing coverage quickly. This is good news.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (2/24) Today's temps were rising some at +1.128 degs.
Nino 3.4 Daily CDAS Index Temps: Today (2/24) temps were rising too at +0.092 degs. Temps have been oscillating warm to cool and back in 2-3 week cycles within a range from -0.0 to -0.5 degs but now are spiking warm and well outside the previous trend all above the neutral line. A turn to a warmer regime looks possible.
CFSV2 Forecast for Nino3.4 SST Anomalies
SST Anomaly Projections
CFSv2 Uncorrected Data (2/24) The forecast has temps rising steadily to +0.5 degs late March building to +0.8 degs in later April slowly rising to +1.0 in July, then rising steadily to +1.5 degs early Oct, and +1.6 by Nov suggesting a return of El Nino. La Nina is over and a return to at least normal temps is expected in Spring. The change in the atmosphere will be slower. But the El Nino outcome indicated by this model seems improbably high.
IRI Consensus Plume: The mid-Feb Plume just updated today (2/16) and depicts temps are warming and are now at neutral 0.0 degs. A slow increase in temps is forecast thereafter to +0.5 degs in July holding into the Fall. This is +0.3 degs warmer than the January forecast and suggests La Nina is over and a warmer regime is setting up. See chart here - link.
Atmospheric Deco.cgiing (Indicating the presence of El Nino in the atmosphere driven by the ocean):
Southern Oscillation Index (2/24): The daily index was still negative at -5.57, the 11th negative day after a previous run of 14 days of positive readings. This negative reading is driven by persistent low pressure over Tahiti. The 30 day average was falling at -1.46. The 90 day average was falling some at -0.03. All this suggests a near neutral pattern was taking hold.
ESPI (like SOI but based on satellite confirmed precipitation. Positive is good, negative bad): (2/24) Today's value was rising slightly at -0.97, but still pretty negative consider what is going on in the ocean suggesting a continuation of La Nina. A peak low was reached on 11/2 at -1.94 the deepest it had been in this La Nina event. This measures atmospheric response, not oceanic. The atmosphere lags behind changes in the ocean driven by the ENSO cycle. The expectation is this index will start rising a few months after the oceanic change occurred.
Pacific Decadal Oscillation: The PDO continues positive, though much weaker lately (as expected with La Nina setting in).
Per NOAAs index recent values (Jan-Dec): Jan 2017 = +0.21, This continues to look like the warm phase of the PDO. No consistently negative readings have occurred since Feb 2014
The Washington EDU index (Jan-Dec): Jan 2017 = +0.77. 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
Add a STORMSURF Buoy Forecast to your Google Homepage. Click Here:
Then open your Google homepage, hit 'edit' button (top right near graph), and select your location
Stormsurf Video Surf Forecast for the week starting Sunday (2/26): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WC8eTQ97Qcs&feature=youtu.be&hd=1
For automatic notification of forecast updates, subscribe to the Stormsurf001 YouTube channel - just click the 'Subscribe' button below the video.
Titans of Mavericks on HBO Sports with Bryant Gumbel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=luQSYf5sKjQ
- - -
||Casa Noble Tequila If you are looking for an exquisite experience in fine tequila tasting, one we highly recommend, try Case Noble. Consistently rated the best tequila when compared to any other. Available at BevMo (in California). Read more here: http://www.casanoble.com/
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.
Read all the latest news and happenings on our News Page here
Surf Height-Swell Height Correlation Table