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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: April 25, 2006 8:31 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
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Swell Potential Rating = 2.5 - California & 3.0 - 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 4/24 thru Sun 4/30
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 Utility swell
2 = Good probability for  1-2 days of Utility swell
1 = Good probability for 3 or more days of Impulse or Windswell
0 = Low probability for 1-2 days of Impulse or Windswell   

South Pacific To Produce
North Pacific Fading

 

PACIFIC OVERVIEW
On Tuesday (4/25) Northern CA surf was flat and onshore. South facing breaks in Santa Cruz were flat too. Central California surf was up to waist high on the sets. Southern CA breaks from Santa Barbara to just north of LA were flat. The LA Area southward to Orange County was flat. Southward from Orange County into San Diego best breaks were flat. The North Shore of Oahu was waist high on the sets. The South Shore was waist to chest high on the sets. The East Shore was waist high - tradewind swell.

Summer is here. For California over the next week locally generated windswell coming from the Cape Mendocino area is the best hope, with small southern hemi swell intermixed at times but not really noticeable except at the best south swell spots. One more gale is forecast for the Gulf of Alaska mid-week and the models have bumped the intensity up a tad, but it's still to be short-lived and weak with whatever swell it produces likely lost in the local windswell. Hawaii's Northern Shores to see a little bit of swell from this gale too possibly sending the last rideable swell of the season for the weekend. Small southern windswell for the South Shores too this week. The southern hemi continues trying, with one gale isolated to the far Southeastern Pacific today and not well organized, with only dribbles expected targeting California and locations south of there. Another stronger system forecast mid-week pushing energy towards Hawaii and California, but it's yet to form. See details below...

 

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

North Pacific

Overview
Tuesdays jetstream charts (4/25) indicated a big split pattern over the western Pacific with nothing of interest in the East. Over the next 72 hours through Friday (4/28) a weak trough (dip in the jet) is forecast falling out of the eastern Bering Sea in to the Gulf of Alaska Wednesday tracking northeast through Friday and fading. Some support for gale development possible at the surface with 120-130 kt winds briefly flowing under this trough. Otherwise a big split pattern to remain in the West Pacific with no surface level gale support suggested. Beyond 72 hours the split is to dissipate and be replace by a mild ridge pushing over the dateline, then moderating by next Tuesday with a new trough trying to organize just south of the Aleutians and east of the dateline with 120 kts winds flowing under it. Possible gale development at the surface but confidence is very low.

At the surface on Tuesday (4/25) strong high pressure at 1028 mbs was centered just north of midway between Hawaii and San Francisco ridging into the Pacific Northwest with a secondary high over the dateline ridging south.

Low pressure was poised in the Eastern Bering Sea scheduled to drop south into the Gulf of Alaska on Wednesday (4/26) with pressure at 996 mbs producing 35-40 kt north to northwest winds targeting Hawaii and to a lesser extent California with 25 ft seas. On Thursday (4/27) the low is to track east with winds fading from the 30-35 kts range aimed more to the east and seas fading from the 22 ft range. No swell producing fetch to be left for either California or Hawaii on Friday with winds 25 kts or less. If all plays out as forecast small swell to be impacting Hawaii late Saturday (4/29) reaching 4.2 ft @ 13-14 secs (5.0-5.5 ft faces) from 350 degrees building to 5.5 ft @ 12 secs on Sunday (6.0-6.5 ft faces) and fading late. This swell to push into North CA on Sunday (4/30) building to 4.7 ft @ 13 secs late (5.5-6.0 ft faces) from 300 degrees at non-shadowed breaks and 3.7 ft @ 13 secs in Central CA late (4.0-4.5 ft faces). Tiny swell of 2.4 ft @ 12-13 secs expected in exposed north facing breaks of Southern CA on Monday AM (2.5-3.0 ft faces).

High pressure at 1028 mbs to be ridging into the Pacific Northwest also on Wednesday (4/26) setting up gradient north winds along the coast of Cape Mendocino, CA at 30-35 kts late continuing in the 30 kt range Thursday with seas to 15 ft fading to the 25 kt range Friday and holding through the weekend. Moderate short period windswell to result pushing into North and Central CA Thursday through the weekend.

No other swell sources suggested.

 

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

 

California Offshore Forecast
On Tuesday (4/25) satellite and model data indicated high pressure was in control of the waters off California at 1030 mbs tracking east, expected to ridge into the Pacific Northwest on Wednesday. This to produce gradient north winds and windswell as indicated above. The bulk of this fetch is to remain off the coast inducing moderate northwest winds in the afternoons north of Pt Conception but with generally light winds early in the mornings through Sunday. The models suggest no southerly eddy flow these locations, through Southern California is to be plagued by the southerly flow through the duration though. A second stronger gradient is forecast starting Monday (5/1) bringing stronger north winds to 40 kts off Cape Mendocino impacting Northern coastal locations, then pulling away from the coast Tuesday. Moderate sized longer period windswell possible.

The detailed 5 Day wind forecast is included with the surf & swell overview in the QuikCAST's.

 

South Pacific

Overview
On Tuesday (4/25) the jetstream was ridging strong south of New Zealand and expected to continue non-stop through the next 7 days but relaxing well to the east, opening up a small trough there and providing some support for surface level gale development. The surface level weather pattern to reflect this flow with all activity isolated to the Southeast Pacific.

At the surface on Tuesday (4/25) strong high pressure at 1032 mbs was locked in-place just east of New Zealand. A broad gale at 972 mbs was developing well to the south just above the Ross Ice Shelf expected to produce 45 kt winds by nightfall aimed well towards Hawaii and California while the low itself tracked east. By Wednesday night the low to drop to 948 mbs with a decentralized fetch of 45-50 kt winds building aimed northeast at California and with sideband energy still pushing up the great circle path to Hawaii. Seas building to 35 ft at 53S 155W. On Thursday pressure to drop to 936 mbs with fetch ramping up to 55 kts over a small area aimed over a arch from California east to South America and moving to the eastern edge of the California swell window. Seas 39 ft through the day at 50S 145W. Contrary to previous model runs, the low to go stationary there and spin out through Saturday (4/29) with 30-32 ft continuing on the edge of the swell window 47S 130-140W. If this system develops as forecast near significant class summertime swell could result for Hawaii and California. Will monitor.

Also on Monday (4/24) a small low developed in the Southeast Pacific producing 40-45 kt west winds lifting northeast Tuesday. Seas built to 30 ft over a small area early Tuesday at 60S 132W for 6 hours (well east of the Hawaiian swell window) and we then on the decline expected to fade away by Wednesday before reaching the eastern edge of the California swell window. These seas were targeting California and locations south of there with perhaps some small swell with period in the 15-17 sec range possible. Nothing from this system for Hawaii through.

No other swell producing fetch was present or forecast to occur.

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 is some suggestions of another low moving into the Gulf of Alaska over the weekend into early next week with some degree of 35 kt winds pushing east towards Hawaii and California with seas in the 20 ft range. In all this looks very weak and at that is optimistic given the time of year. Will monitor.

Another bout of 30-35 kt gradient north winds forecast off Cape Mendocino Mon/Tues (5/2) possibly setting up north windswell for North/Central CA then.

Otherwise no swell producing fetch suggested for the North Pacific.

South Pacific

Beyond 72 hours no swell producing fetch is forecast with high pressure taking control of the Central Pacific.

Details to follow...


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Local Interest

New Content - QuikCAST's and Satellite Altimetry: Stormsurf has been busy this winter putting some new things together. First up is two new QuikCAST's for the Northeast US Coast, one for Cape Hatteras-to-Virginia Beach and another for New Jersey-to-New York. Check them out Here
Also we now provide Jason-1 Altimetry data overlaid on our Wavewatch III wave models. Take a look Here

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Mavericks Surf Contest and Stormsurf
- Science hangs 10 at Surf Contest: CNET - Read it Here
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Read all the latest news and happenings on our News Page here

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