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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: February 19, 2006 12:14 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 = 1.5 - California & 1.9 - 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 2/20 thru Sun 2/24
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   

High Pressure In-Control
Hint of Change Long-Term


On Sunday (2/19) Northern CA surf was chest to head high. South facing breaks in Santa Cruz were waist to chest high, maybe a little more occasionally. Central California surf was chest to head high. Southern CA breaks from Santa Barbara to just north of LA were waist high with best breaks maybe chest high, though many were near flat. The LA Area southward to Orange County was up to waist high at the best breaks. Southward from Orange County into San Diego best breaks were waist high with rare sets nearly chest high. The North Shore of Oahu was up to 2 ft overhead from north windswell. The South Shore was flat. The East Shore was 2-3 ft overhead at the best spots.

Northeast windswell was hitting Hawaii producing something rideable a select locations. Residual dateline swell was still trickling into North and Central California producing up to head high surf, but neither the Islands or the mainland had anything outstanding. And the forecast is not real positive either with a high pressure pattern in control of the North Pacific. There's some hope further out with the northeastern Gulf of Alaska looking to become more active, but that's not for another week. See details below...


Current marine weather and wave analysis.cgius forecast conditions for the next 72 hours

North Pacific

Sundays (2/19) jetstream continued in .cgiit mode with no change expected. Solid energy continues tracking off Japan but then .cgiits east of the dateline at 160E with the southern branch tracking over Hawaii then heading east into Southern Baja while the northern branch pushed northeast over the Aleutians and into Alaska. There was no indication of any support for surface level storm development. Over the next 72 hours through Wednesday (2/22) the .cgiit in the jetstream is to continue, perhaps pushing even further west to 150E. Energy is to be evenly .cgiit between the north and south branches of the jet with pockets to 140 kts, but fleeting and not well organized. No support for surface level storm development suggested. Beyond 72 hours the northern branch is to continue over the Aleutians but start dipping south over the Northern Gulf of Alaska on Friday (2/24) pushing to a point off Northern California by Sunday (2/26). Winds to be generally light, but there's suggestion that some surface gale activity might result from this slightly improved configuration.

At the surface today high pressure at 1040 mbs was in control of the Central Gulf of Alaska, positioned 1200 nmiles north of Hawaii ridging into Canada and west to the dateline. A weak low at 1016 mbs, really just a kink in the isobars, was generating some 25 kt east winds northeast of Hawaii aimed towards Asia and that was the best fetch the mighty North Pacific had to offer. Over the next 72 hours another similar low at 1020 mbs is to set up northeast of Hawaii starting Monday and continuing in some form through the workweek producing 30 kt east-northeast winds aimed reasonably well towards the Hawaii and Islands and likely producing windswell headed in their direction (See QuikCAST's for details). Otherwise high pressure in the Gulf is to drift east towards the Pacific Northwest ridging into the coast there. No swell producing fetch indicated.


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


California Offshore Forecast
On Sunday (2/19) the models indicated high pressure in control for the coming week and beyond. A strong one was located north of Hawaii at 1040 mbs ridging into the Pacific Northwest, but too far away to have any real affect on local winds other than to keep a generally light offshore flow in.cgiace. This high is to track east and get close enough by Tuesday (2/21) to start building a northerly flow along the coast for one day. Then the high is to fade with a light wind regime back in effect through Saturday. But by Sunday, if the models are right, low pressure to start winding up off Cape Mendocino producing a brisk southerly flow nearshore while up to 50 kt northwest winds build in the storms southern quadrant aimed well at California, providing potential for large lumpy swell for the week beyond.

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


South Pacific

No swell producing fetch forecast over the next 72 hours.

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




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

North Pacific

Beyond 72 hours a new high pressure centered at 1044 mbs is to develop over the Aleutian Islands just east of the dateline tracking southeast towards the Gulf on Friday (2/24). Marginally lower pressure in the Gulf at 1016 mbs is to be sinking south and generating gradient north winds at 30 kts as the two systems interact. By Sunday (2/26) a more real low is to develop off Oregon dipping to 988 mbs with supposedly 50 kt winds wrapping around the low aimed well from Cape Mendocino Ca southward to South CA and Baja. Will believe it when it happens. Otherwise no swell producing fetch suggested.

South Pacific

Beyond 72 hours no swell producing fetch is forecast.

Details to follow...


Local Interest

Mavericks Surf Contest and Stormsurf
- Science hangs 10 at Surf Contest: CNET - Read it Here
- Pillar Point Unique Conditions swell Mavericks Monsters: Rough seabed, winds and seas currents to create California biggest surfing challenge; San Francisco Chronicle - Read it Here
- Tyler Smith's Quest: Chasing the Moby Dick of the Surfing World: San Francisco Chronicle - Read it Here

MV Indies Trader Returns to Sumatra
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ntures is proud to announce that after seven incredibly successful years circumnavigating the globe on Quiksilver's "Crossing" expedition - the MV Indies Trader is returning to its roots in Sumatra.
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El Nino Forecast Updated: The Stormsurf El Nino forecast was updated on 12/30/05. Check out all the latest details concerning El Nino and it's impact on the winter surf season. Details here

Tutorial on the Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) Presented by Dr. Roland Madden: If you're interested in El Nino and the MJO, have a basic understanding of El Nino, and you have broadband connection, audio and Macromedia Flash installed, then the following presentation is a must see. Dr Madden present a great overview of how the MJO works. And there's nothing like hearing it straight from the founders mouth. Link here:

Read all the latest news and happenings on our News Page here

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