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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: Monday, April 18, 2022 2:18 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
2.9 - California & 2.2 - 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 4/18 thru Sun 4/24

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 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   

Extratropical Storm on Dateline
Multiple Southern Hemi Swells Tracking North

 

BUOY ROUNDUP
Monday, April 18, 2022 :

  • Buoy 233 (Pearl Harbor)/Buoy 239 (Lanai) NA/Buoy 238 (Barbers Pt) NA: Seas were 3.1 ft @ 14.3 secs with swell 1.7 ft @ 13.8 secs from 159 degrees. Water temp 77.2 degs (Barbers Pt), NA (Lani 239), 76.8 (Pearl Harbor 233).
  • Buoy 106 (Waimea): Seas were 5.1 ft @ 7.1 secs with swell 2.5 ft @ 10.0 secs from 299 degrees. Water temp 76.8 degs.
  • Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 3.8 ft @ 7.1 secs with swell 3.1 ft @ 6.2 secs from 262 degrees. Wind northwest at 4-6 kts. Water temperature 60.3 degs, 57.7 (Topanga 103), 56.8 degs (Long Beach 215), 59.0 (Del Mar 153), 58.6 (Imperial Beach 155). At Harvest Buoy (071) primary swell was 3.7 ft @ 6.3 secs from 309 degrees. At Santa Monica (028) swell was 2.7 ft @ 6.4 secs from 264 degrees. At Oceanside (045) swell was 1.1 ft @ 13.8 secs from 223 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma (191) swell was 3.1 ft @ 6.6 secs from 278 degrees. Water temp 62.1 degs.
  • Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 2.8 ft @ 14.3 secs with swell 1.4 ft @ 13.4 secs from 226 degrees. Wind at buoy 46012 was south at 6-8 kts. Water temp 49.6 degs (Pt Reyes 029), 50.9 (46026), 53.6 (SF Bar 142), and 53.2 (Santa Cruz 254).

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 Monday (4/18) North and Central CA had set waves at waist to chest high and fairly clean and somewhat lined up but very soft. Protected breaks were flat and clean. At Santa Cruz surf was thigh to waist high and clean and soft and slightly lined up. In Southern California/Ventura waves were thigh high and soft and formless with northwest warble running through it and textured conditions. Central Orange County had sets at waist high or so and somewhat lined up with decent form but very soft and crumbled from texture driven by light south wind. South Orange County's best summertime breaks were waist high with chest high peaks and somewhat lined up and clean but very soft and mushed. North San Diego had sets at waist to maybe chest high and lined up with decent form and clean but soft. Hawaii's North Shore had sets to maybe waist high and lined up but pretty closed out with a fair amount of sideshore lump running through it. The South Shore was still getting southern hemi swell with set waves chest to head high and lined up with decent form and clean. The East Shore was waist high and chopped from moderate northeasterly trades.

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

Meteorological Overview
On Monday (4/18) California was theoretically starting to get some Southern Hemi swell and that same swell was fading in Hawaii from a weak gale developed over the Southwest Pacific tracking east Sat-Mon (4/11) producing 25-26 ft seas aimed northeast. Up north a tropical system has recurved northeast and east over the North Dateline region over the weekend (4/17) with seas to 41 ft and is forecast to rebuild some while falling southeast into the Gulf of Alaska on Tues-Wed (4/20) with 25-26 ft seas aimed southeast. Down south a gale formed in the Southeast Pacific Sat-Sun (4/17) lifting gently east-northeast producing up to 38 ft seas. And another developed just east of New Zealand on Sat-Sun (4/17) with 29-30 ft seas aimed well northeast and is to fade on Tues (4/19) well north in the Central South Pacific. Swells from both are radiating northeast. Beyond another small gale is forecast in the Central South Pacific Tues-Thurs (4/21) lifting well northeast with seas to 30 ft. And another is forecast under New Zealand on Sat (4/23) producing 36 ft seas aimed east-northeast but making little east headway. And maybe another system to follow early next week under New Zealand. And Up north perhaps one more gale is to develop over the North Dateline Region on Wed (4/20) tracking east into the Gulf on Fri (4/22) with seas to 35 ft. So a mix of both north and south swell to continue for a while longer. Typical Springtime pattern.

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 Monday (4/18) the jet was reasonably consolidated pushing off North Japan with winds 140 kts running due east over the dateline then falling into a small trough of the Pacific Northwest offering support for weather but likely not swell production. Over the next 72 hours that trough is to move inland over the Pacific Northwest on Tues (4/19) while the jet ridges some over the dateline but then falls southeast over the Western Gulf with winds 170 kts digging out a new trough into Thurs (4/21) offering some support for gale development and then pushing inland late in the day making weather for North and Central CA. Beyond 72 hours another small trough is forecast developing over the North Dateline region on Thurs (4/21) being fed by 150 kts winds pushing east and fading in the Central Gulf on Sat (4/23) perhaps offering some swell production potential. But the jet is to be fragmented and unorganized over the West Pacific and the pattern shifting steadily east through Mon (4/25) offering no support for gale development. the North Pacific appears to be shutting down.

Surface Analysis
On Monday (4/18) no swell of interest was hitting Hawaii or California.
But swell from a tropical system that was pushing over the dateline is developing (see Extratropical Storm Malakas below).

Over the next 72 hours the focus is to be on ET Storm Malakas (see below).

But another gale is forecast developing over the North Dateline region on Wed PM (4/20) producing 40-45 kts northwest winds over a small area and seas building from 26 ft at 47.75N 178.5E aimed southeast. On Thurs AM (4/21) northwest winds to be 45 kts solid with seas 33 ft at 45.5N 176.75W aimed east. In the evening the gale is to be in the Northwestern Gulf with 40 kts west winds and seas 32 ft at 45N 167.5W aimed east. On Fri AM (4/22) the gale is to be fading with 35 kts west winds in the Gulf with seas 29 ft at 46N 161.5W aimed east. Fetch is to be fading in the evening with 30 kts west winds and seas fading from 24 ft at 46.5N 153.5W aimed east. The gale is to dissipate from there. Something to monitor.

 

Extratropical Storm Malakas
On Tues AM (4/12) Typhoon Malakas was tracking north 600 nmiles off the Central Philippines on Tues AM (4/12) with winds 85 kts. Malakas continued on a north-northeast heading through Friday (4/15) peaking Tues PM with winds 125 kts then slowly fading from there with winds down to 50 kts late Fri PM (4/15) positioned 700 nmiles west of Tokyo Japan. From there Malakas turned extratropical on Sun AM (4/17) off the North Kuril Islands tracking east with winds building to 50 kts and seas 41 ft at 46.5N 170.5E aimed east. In the evening ET Malakas was over the North Dateline region with 40-45 kts northwest winds and seas 37 ft at 47.25N 179.5W aimed east. On Monday AM (4/18) northwest winds are 35-40 kts over the Northwestern Gulf with seas 32 ft at 48.25N 171.5W aimed east. In the evening northwest winds to hold at 40 kts over and south of the Eastern Aleutians with seas 29 ft at 49.75N 166.25W aimed southeast. On Tues AM (4/19) Malakas is to be holding with 40 kts northwest winds in the Northwestern Gulf with seas 30 ft at 51N 163.5W aimed southeast. In the evening the gale is to be fading with 35-40 kt northwest winds over a broad area aimed southeast with seas 26 ft at 47.5N 158W aimed southeast. On Wed AM (4/20) the gale is to be in the Central Gulf with 30-35 kts northwest winds and seas 25 ft over a broad area at 41.75N 146W aimed southeast. Fetch is to be fading in the evening from 30 kts off Central CA with seas 23 ft at 40N 140W aimed southeast. Fetch is to be fading Thurs AM (4/21) from barely 309 kts with seas fading from 21 ft at 40N 138W aimed southeast.

Hawaii: Sideband swell is expected to arrive on Wed afternoon (4/20) building to 2.8 ft @ 15-16 secs (4.0-4.5 ft). Swell continues on Thurs AM (4/21) at 3.3 ft @ 13-14 secs (4.5 ft) holding through the day. Swell is to hold on Fri (4/22) 3.5 ft @ 12 secs (4.0 ft) and turning more northerly. Swell fading on Sat (4/23) from 2.8 ft @ 11 secs (3.0 ft). Swell Direction: 320 degrees moving to 345 degrees

North CA: Expect swell arrival on Thurs (4/21) building to 6.2 ft @ 17 secs later (10.0 ft). Swell building on Fri (4/22) to 10.5 ft @ 15 secs (15 ft) and pretty raw. Swell fading on Sat (4/23) from 7.8 ft @ 13-14 secs (10.5 ft). Swell fading on Sun (4/24) from 5.9 ft @ 12 secs early (7.0 ft). Swell Direction: 297 falling to 285 degrees.

 

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

 

Tropical Update
No tropical systems of interest are being monitored.

California Nearshore Forecast
Water temps are very low north of Pt Conception due to upwelling from strong northwesterly winds 5 days previous.

  • Tues (4/19) early southwest winds are forecast at 10-15 kts early for most of North CA and northwest winds 5-10 kts for Central CA but up to 15 kts over Pt Conception. afternoon. In the afternoon south winds are forecast at 5 kts for Cape Mendocino and northwest winds for the rest of North CA at 10 kts continuing into Central CA. Rain for all of North CA early reaching south to Santa Cruz fading late morning. Snow for Tahoe early pushing south to Yosemite and losing intensity through the day.
  • Wed (4/20) morning south winds are forecast at 25-35 kts for Cape Mendocino and south 10-15 kts for the remainder of North CA. Northwest winds 5-10 kts for Central CA. In the afternoon south winds are forecast at 15-20 kts for all of North CA and south at 10 kts for Central CA. Rain developing for most of North CA mid AM reaching the Golden Gate late afternoon and Santa Cruz in the evening. Snow for Tahoe starting late evening.
  • Thurs (4/21) morning southwest winds are forecast at 10 kts for all of North CA and 5-10 kts for Central CA. In the afternoon southwest winds are forecast at 10-15 kts for North CA and 5-10 kts for Central CA. Rain and a front pushing further south to Big Sur early and to Point Conception in the afternoon and holding solid north of there all day and into Southern CA overnight. Solid snow for Tahoe early and building south holding well into the evening.
  • Fri (4/22) morning northwest winds are forecast at 10+ kts for all of North and Central CA holding all day maybe building to 15 kts for the lower half of Central CA. Light showers early for all of North, Central and Southern CA. Snow for all the Sierra early fading out through the day.
  • Sat (4/23) high pressure take control with northwest winds 10-15 kts for North CA early and 15-20 kts for Central CA. In the afternoon northwest winds are forecast at 20+ kts for all of North and Central CA. No precip forecast. A dry-out to begin.
  • Sun (4/24) northwest winds are forecast at 20 kts solid for all of North and Central CA early fading some to 15-20 kts in the afternoon.
  • Mon (4/25) northwest winds are forecast at 15-20 kts early for all of North and Central CA holding all day.

Total snow accumulation for the next 10 days respectively for Squaw Valley, Sugar Bowl, Kirkwood and Mammoth at 57, 55, 50, and 19 inches with about 10 inches on 4/19 with the rest on 4/20-4/21. Talk about an Amazing April.

Freezing level falling from 9,000 ft today to 5,000 ft on 4/19 and generally holding there before falling to 3,000 ft briefly on 4/22. Then a steady build is forecast reaching 10,000 ft on 4/24 and holding beyond.

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Tioga Pass/Pacific Crest Trail intersection forecast: Temps - Freeze Level (more here - scroll down to 'Resort Snow Forecasts>Central CA or North CA Caltrans & Backcountry')

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

 

South Pacific

Overview
Surface Analysis
Swell from a small gale that tracked east from a point southeast of New Zealand was fading in Hawaii and starting to hit California (see Weaker New Zealand Gale below).

Over the next 72 hours starting Sat AM (4/16) a gale started developing southeast of New Zealand with 45-50 kt southwest winds and seas building from 28 ft at 53S 180W aimed northeast. In the evening 40 kt south winds were pushing northeast with seas 31 ft at 52S 172W aimed northeast. On Sun AM (4/17) south winds were 40 kts aimed well north over a decent sized area with seas 29 ft at 48N 164W aimed northeast. In the evening 40 kt south winds were lifting northeast with seas 30 ft at 45S 160W aimed north and northeast. On Mon AM (4/18) 40-45 kt south winds were continuing to lift north with seas 31 ft at 50.25S 153.25W aimed north. The gale is to be fading in the evening with 35 kt south winds and seas fading from 28 ft at 43S 152W aimed north. The gale is to dissipate from there. Something to monitor.

Hawaii: Expect swell arrival on Thurs (4/21) building to 1.0 ft @ 16-17 secs later (1.5 ft). Swell holding on Fri (4/22) at 1.1 ft @ 15-16 secs (1.5-2.0 ft). Swell fading on Sat (4/23) from 1.0 ft @ 14-15 secs (1.0-1.5 ft). Swell Direction: 198 degrees

Southern CA: Rough data suggest swell arrival on Sun (4/24) building to 1.5 ft @ 17-18 secs later (2.5 ft). Swell building on Mon (4/25) to 1.6 ft @ 16 secs early (2.5 ft). Swell fading on Tues (4/26) from 1.5 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.0-2.5 ft).

North CA: Rough data suggest swell arrival on Sun (4/24) building to 1.5 ft @ 17-18 secs later (2.5 ft). Swell building on Mon (4/25) to 1.6 ft @ 16 secs early (2.5 ft). Swell fading on Tues (4/26) from 1.5 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.0-2.5 ft).

 

On Tues AM (4/19) a tiny gale is forecast developing well southeast of New Zealand with 50 kt south winds lifting northeast with seas 28 ft at 53S 162W aimed northeast. In the evening the gale is to lift northeast with 45-50 kt south winds and seas 29 ft at 52.25S 150.25W aimed northeast. On Wed AM (4/20) south winds to be 40 kts from the south over the Central South Pacific with seas 29 ft at 51S 143.5W aimed north. In the evening the gael is to be over the Southeast Pacific with 40 kt south winds and 30 ft seas at 49.75S 135.75W aimed northeast. The gale is to be fading on Thurs AM (4/21) with 35 kt south winds over a tiny area and seas 28 ft at 48.25S 131.75W aimed northeast. Something to monitor.

 

Weaker New Zealand Gale
A new system started building east of New Zealand on Sat PM (4/9) generating 35-40 kts southwest winds with seas building from 26 ft at 50S 174W aimed northeast. On Sun AM (4/10) a broad area of 30-35 kt southwest winds were pushing east with seas 26 ft at 46S 167W aimed northeast. In the evening fetch was pushing east at 30-35 kts with 25 ft seas at 47S 158W aimed northeast. On Mon AM (4/11) the gale was fading some with 30-35 kt southwest winds and seas 24 ft at 47S 143W aimed east. In the evening fetch was fading from 30-35 kts from the west with seas 26 ft over a small area at 51S 142W. The gale faded from there.

Hawaii: Swell fading on Mon (4/18) from 1.8 ft @ 14 secs (2.5 ft). Dribbles on Tues (4/19) fading from 1.3 ft @ 12-13 secs (1.5 ft). Swell Direction: 190 degrees

Southern CA: Expect swell arrival on Mon (4/18) building to 1.0 ft @ 17-18 secs later (1.5 ft). Swell building on Tues (4/19) to 2.0 ft @ 16 secs later (3.0 ft). Swell continues on Wed (4/20) at 2.0 ft @ 15-16 secs (3.0 ft). Swell fading on Thurs (4/21) from 1.8 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.5 ft). Residuals on Fri (4/22) fading from 1.6 ft @ 13-14 secs (2.0 ft). Swell Direction: 210 degrees

North CA: Expect swell arrival on Mon (4/18) building to 0.9 ft @ 18 secs later (1.5 ft). Swell building on Tues (4/19) to 2.0 ft @ 16-17 secs later (3.0-3.5 ft). Swell continues on Wed (4/20) at 2.1 ft @ 15-16 secs (3.0 ft). Swell fading on Thurs (4/21) from 2.0 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Residuals on Fri (4/22) fading from 1.7 ft @ 13-14 secs (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 210 degrees

 

Southeast Pacific Gale
On Fri PM (4/15) a gale started building over the deep Central South Pacific with 40-45 kts southwest winds and seas building from 29 ft at 59.25S 141.75W aimed east-northeast. On Sat AM (4/16) southwest winds were 45-50 kts in the Southeast Pacific with 35 ft seas at 57S 132.5W aimed northeast. In the evening fetch was fading from 40-45 kts from the southwest and aimed more northeasterly than before with seas 36 ft at 54.75S 124.25W aimed northeast. After that fetch moved northeast and east of even the Southern CA swell window.

Southern CA: Expect swell arrival on Sun (4/24) building to 1.5 ft @ 17-18 secs later (2.5 ft). On Monday (4/25) swell to build some to 1.6 ft @ 16 secs later (2.5 ft). Tues (4/26) swell to be fading from 1.5 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell gone after that. Swell Direction: 195 degrees

North CA: Expect swell arrival on Sun (4/24) building to 1.2 ft @ 18-19 secs later (2.0-2.5 ft). On Monday (4/25) swell to build some to 1.7 ft @ 16-17 secs later (2.5-3.0 ft). Tues (4/26) swell to be fading from 1.5 ft @ 15 secs (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell gone after that. Swell Direction: 195 degrees

 

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 no swell producing weather systems of interest are forecast.

 

South Pacific

Beyond 72 hours a stronger and broader storm is forecast under New Zealand on Fri PM (4/22) with 50 kts southwest winds and seas 37 ft at 58.25S 160.25E aimed northeast. On Sat AM (4/23) 45 kt southwest winds are to tracking east with 40 ft seas at 59S 172.75EW aimed northeast. In the evening the gale is to start falling southeast with 40-45 kts west winds and seas 34 ft at 62.25S 178E aimed east. Something to monitor. And more fetch to follow in the same area.

 

MJO/ENSO Forecast

 

La Nina Weakening - Kelvin Wave Erupting - No Warm Water Behind
Summary - Cool subsurface water volume peaked under the equatorial Pacific on 10/15/21 and is now fading. A stronger than expected Active Phase of the MJO in Dec produced a Kelvin Wave that is erupting over the Galapagos with water temps on the rise there, but still solidly in La Nina territory over the Central Pacific. A much hoped for Active Phase of the MJO (and westerly anomalies) previously delayed is developing. It seemed the peak of La Nina was behind us. But a 3rd year of La Nina is projected by the CFS model, though that is not certain. Much steady west anomalies are forecast from here forward. The outlook is unclear but seems biased towards another year of La Nina.

MJO/ENSO Discussion
The Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) 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.
And the El Nino/La Nino cycle (collectively know as ENSO - El Nino Southern Oscillation) is a less frequent (about once every 7 years) but more impactful cycle that affects world wide weather. Specifically, strong El Nino events promote storm production in the Pacific while La Nina events suppress storm production. These therefore have a significant impact on the production of swell and surf. The paragraphs below analyze the state of the MJO and ENSO in the Pacific and provide forecasts for upcoming activity (or inactivity depending on the state and interaction of these two oscillations).

Overview: In 2019 warm equatorial waters were fading, and by August a tongue of cool water was tracking west on the equator from Ecuador over the Galapagos reaching to a point nearly south of Hawaii. A bit of a recovery tried to occur during Fall of 2019, with weak warm water building in the Nino 1.2 region, but cool water held in a pool off Peru. By April 2020 a cool pool was starting to build, forming a well defined cool tongue that evolved into La Nina, with it fully developing through July 2020. A slow dissolving of La Nina started in March 2021 with 2 Kelvin Waves sweeping east and arriving over the Galapagos in June. Weak warming set up over the equator with no cool waters present. NOAA declared La Nina dead. But cold water returned in July 2021 and a second pulse of La Nina developed and is continuing today, though possibly weaker with its foundation appearing to be in decline.

LONG-RANGE PACIFIC STORM AND SWELL GENERATION POTENTIAL FORECAST
Fall /Winter 2021-2022 = 1.5 (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: It was assumed that the moderate La Nina from the Winter of 2020/2021 was on the wane and that a return to neutral ENSO state would set up over the Pacific Basin through the summer of 2021. But La Nina made a strong return by the end of Sept much like what the CFS model suggested would happen. A full double dip La Nina pattern took hold as we moved into November with this second La Nina dip being nearly as strong as the previous one. But a quick fade is forecast as we move into late December with the CFS predicting a return to a neutral wind anomaly pattern at that time and the low pressure bias making headway in to the KWGA in early Jan. Still it will take some time for the atmosphere to fully respond, resulting in a less than normal swell production forecast especially for Fall into early Winter. But by later in Feb 2022 perhaps a return to a more normal pattern might take hold. But it will be too little too late. As a result a significantly reduced number of storm days and storm intensity is expected Oct-Feb 2022, resulting in a below normal level of swells, with swell being below normal duration and period. But by March 2022, the number of storm days, intensity and duration of those storms should start improving as La Nina fades out. The status of the PDO is not known, though it appears to be returning to at least a neutral state, rather than the warm phase as previously projected thereby having no significant positive or negative effect on the long term outlook.

KWGA/Equatorial Surface Wind Analysis (KWGA - Kelvin Wave Generation Area - The area 5 degrees north and south of the equator from 170W to 135E)
Analysis (TAO Buoys): As of (4/17) 5 day average winds were strong from the east over the Eastern equatorial Pacific and strong east over the Central Pacific and moderate to strong east over the KWGA. Anomalies were moderate east over the East equatorial Pacific and modest east over the Central Pacific and modest east over the KWGA. (Note: These are 5 day average winds, versus realtime, so they lag what is happening today (by about 2.5 days).
1 Week Forecast (GFS Model): On (4/18) east anomalies were modest filling the KWGA. The 7 day forecast calls for east anomalies holding filling the KWGA and building in strength to moderate strength. Weak west anomalies to build over the West KWGA to 150E on 4/22 holding through the end of the model run on 4/25.

Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East

MJO/WWB/Wind Projections:  
OLR Models: (4/17) A weak Inactive MJO signal was indicated today over the far West KWGA. The statistical model indicates the Inactive Phase tracking east over the KWGA and over the dateline at the end of the model run. The dynamic model projects a weak Inactive Phase holding through day 5 of the model run then a weak Active Phase sets up on day 10 filling the KWGA then dissipating with the Active Phase developing on day 10 and holding on day 15. The 2 models are out of sync.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS):
(4/18) The statistical model depicts the Active Phase was very weak over the Atlantic and is forecast to track east and over Indian Ocean and very weak 2 weeks out. The dynamic model suggests the same thing but with the Active Phase moving over the Maritime Continent and very weak.
40 day Upper Level Model (assumed to be a statistical mode and 1 week ahead of what is occurring at the surface): (4/18) A weak Inactive MJO signal (dry air) was over the West Pacific today. The forecast depicts the Inactive Phase (dry air) moving east while slowly fading moving to the Central Pacific and into Central America on 5/13. A neutral MJO is to follow from 5/13 through the end of the model run on 5/28.
4 Week CFS Model (850 mb wind): (4/17) A weak Inactive Phase was depicted over the KWGA today with modest east anomalies filling the KWGA. East anomalies are to hold through the end of the model run on 5/15 with west anomalies trying to poke into the KWGA 4/22-5/2 but then getting rebuffed.
3 Month CFS Model (850 mb wind): (4/18 - using the 5th ensemble member - the mean of the 4 individual members which are all from the 00Z run - 1 run per day):
Today the Active Phase of the MJO was filling the KWGA and near its end with east anomalies on the dateline. The forecast depicts the Active Phase to exit the KWGA on 4/23 with west anomalies developing and filling the entirety of the KWGA starting 4/26. A weak mixed MJO signal is to follow 4/27 through 6/4 with west anomalies trying to take control. Beyond a weak MJO signal is forecast with west anomalies filling the entirety of the KWGA from 6/5 onward. The low pass filter indicates a high pressure bias with 2 contour lines was centered east of the dateline at 150W with its western perimeter at 170E today and forecast slowly easing east and pushing east to the dateline 7/7 with the second contour fading away on 6/21. A broad single contour low pressure bias is established centered over the Maritime Continent at 110E with it's leading edge at 150E filling half the KWGA and is forecast moving slowly but steadily east from now on reaching 170E on 7/7. A second contour line is to appear at 120E on 6/29. Of note, the leading edge of the low pressure bias has been stalled at 150E since 1/31, but finally started moving east on 3/25 and is still doing that today. Something to monitor. Today a solid east anomaly pattern that had been in control of KWGA since early July 2021 is done. East anomalies are to recenter themselves at 135W starting 5/4 and holding for the foreseeable future. All this suggest the full demise of La Nina if this occurs as forecast. That said, there is only one more Active MJO forecast for this winter, and we're almost past its peak now meaning only one more shot at support for some sort of gale/swell production. And that even looks unlikely. The model had been constantly shifting the arrival of the low pressure bias into the KWGA almost daily but that seems to not be the case lately. So the future remains uncertain but cautiously optimistic. The demise of La Nina all hinges on the eastward progress of the low pressure bias.

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

Subsurface Waters Temps
TAO Array: (4/18) Today in the far West Pacific the 29 degree isotherm was present at 162E. The 28 deg isotherm line was backtracking to 172E. The 24 deg isotherm was steady across the East Pacific. Anomaly wise, warm anomalies +3 deg C were in a pocket in the far West Pacific down 150m with it's leading edge easing east to 148W with a previous Kelvin Wave in the East Pacific all but gone there. A broad area of -2C cool anomalies were in between the two centered at 125W. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 4/13 indicates the same pocket of cool anomalies between 150W-80W at -3 degs C and appears to be now be shifting east and weakening while the remnants of the Kelvin Wave in the east area all but gone. And perhaps a new Kelvin Wave is starting to push east from the West Pacific from 155W to 150W. The GODAS animation appears to be 1 week behind the TAO data but also is more detailed and accurately modeled.
Sea Level Anomalies: (4/13) Sea heights were rising some over the Equatorial Pacific. A string of weakly positive anomaly pockets were north of the equator pushing from the dateline into the Galapagos along the 5N latitude line. And a broad area of negative anomalies at -5 cms were over the equator between 155W to 80W with a imbedded pocket previously at -15 cms now was -10 cms centered at 140W and losing coverage. Otherwise positive anomalies were mostly locked from the dateline and points west of there. Per the Upper Ocean Heat Anomaly Histogram the previous Kelvin Wave was gone but with a pocket of cool anomalies fading from -1.0 degs between 80W-150W. And it almost looks like a Kelvin Wave is trying to push east from 162W. It is unknown whether cool anomalies will return in earnest moving forward or whether another Kelvin Wave is developing.

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 Qualitative Analysis: (4/17) The latest images depict a broad generic pool of cool water on the equator extending west from 135W dissipating on the dateline. Warming waters fading fast from Ecuador west beyond the Galapagos and in a few pockets out to 135W. A broad pocket of cold water was along the coast of Peru reaching to the Galapagos on the equator. An area of warm water was fading just north of the equator across the entire North Pacific. Overall this indicates the late stages of La Nina.
Hi-res 7 day Trend (4/17): A strong area of cold water was covering from Peru up to Ecuador and out to the Galapagos. Otherwise a neutral trend was occurring.
Hi-res Overview: (4/17) Persistent residual cool waters were covering a large area from Ecuador to 160E on the equator and from South America down at 20S. Warmer than normal waters were aligned from 3N and above over the entire North Pacific. La Nina is solid and now appears to be surging over the Equatorial Pacific.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (4/18) Today's temps were down hard at -1.770 and have steadily been fading the past 4/5 weeks after peaking at +0.760 on 3/18. Temps had been moving upwards since 2/20, and beat a previous high of -0.650 degs on 1/9 and that after being down at -1.871 on 1/3 and -1.954 on 12/18, the lowest this year so far. Previously temps dropped on 11/24 at -1.700, the lowest in months after previously toggling steady at about -0.6 degs from mid Aug to Oct 6, then falling from there. Last year temps bottomed out at -2.138 on 8/13/20. The longterm trend has been steadily downward.
Nino 3.4 Daily CDAS Index Temps:
(4/18) Today's temps were fading slightly at -0.875 after rising to -0.704 on 3/27 and had been on a gentle rising trend since falling to -1.012 on 3/8. Previously temp were rising slightly to -0.505 on 2/2 and that after reaching a peak low of -1.096 on 1/3 beating the previous low of -1.080 on 11/2, the lowest in a year. Prior to that temps had been in a freefall starting from the -0.175 range in early Sept. Before that temps peaked up at 7/1 +0.332, the highest in a year. Temps previously had been steady near -0.222 since early March. Temps bottomed out at -1.654 on 11/3/2020.

Click for Full Sized Image Click for Full Sized Image

CFSV2 Forecast for Nino3.4 Sea Surface Temp (SST) Anomalies & Current SST Anomalies

SST Anomaly Projections
CFSv2 Uncorrected Data
Previous - Temps rose in early Nov 2020 after bottoming out at -1.25 degs, up to -0.01 degs in mid-June 2021 then fading to -1.05 degs in mid-Nov then rebuilding to -0.7 in mid Feb 2022 then fading some after that.
Forecast (4/17) - T
emps are to continue falling to -1.35 degs in early May and then slowly rising to about -1.00 degs in July more or less holding there into Dec, then rising more directly beyond. This model suggests we are at going to fall into a third year of La Nina. The PDF Corrected forecast suggests temps falling to -1.45 degs in May then rising to about -0.75 degs in July then slowly falling to -0.90 degs in Nov, then rising beyond. Still, neither of these forecasts are consistent with the IRI forecast (see IRI Consensus forecast below).
IRI Consensus Plume: The March 18, 2022 Plume depicts temps are -0.738 degs today and have bottomed out. They are to warm to -0.315 degrees in May, then rising to -0.287 degs in July and hovering there through Sept then rising to near 0,0 degs after that. A return to ENSO neutral is expected this summer. Still, this latest update is cooler and slower in returning to normal than the previous forecast.
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 - this is a lagging indicator):
Today (4/18) the daily index was positive at +20.19 after peaking at +31.80 on 4/6, +27.33 on 1/31/22 and +46.71 on 12/26. The trend of late has been solidly positive. Previous other notable peaks were +30.98 on 11/26, +36.90 on 9/28, +27.75 on 9/13 and +37.86 on 7/15.
The 30 day average was rising some at +14.40 and the highest in a year beating the last high of +13.46 on 3/27, after falling to +0.83 on 1/27 then peaking at +13.07 on 12/31 after previously falling to +6.06 on 11/6 after peaking at +11.58 on 10/22. Before that it fell to -3.36 on 6/22, the lowest in a year. It peaked at +19.51 on 1/14.
The 90 day average was rising some at +12.58 today beating teh previous peak of +9.36 on 3/22 and +10.90 on 12/26, falling to +7.10 on 11/1. It previously peaking on 9/21 at +9.80 after falling to it's lowest point in a year on 6/9 at +1.06. The 90 day average peaked at +15.75 on 2/23 (clearly indicative of La Nina then). This index is a lagging indicator but suggest La Nina is returning.

Pacific Decadal Oscillation
The PDO theoretically turned from a 16 year negative run (Jan 98-Feb 2014) in early 2014 and was positive till Dec 2019, but has been negative ever since, driven by recent La Nina conditions. In May-July 2021 it was the most negative its been in the -1.80 to -2.04 range since Sept 2012 (-2.99) and then fell to -3.16 in Oct 2021 (the lowest since July 1933) then settled at -2.72 in Nov and Dec 2021. Looking at the long term record, it seems likely we are still in the Cool Phase of the PDO (La Nina 'like') with no signs of moving to the positive/warm phase (El Nino 'like').

See imagery in the ENSO Powertool 


Powerlines Jeff Clark Inside Mavericks

Local Interest
Stormsurf Video Surf Forecast for this week. See it Here
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NBC News - Climate Change and Surfing: https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/climate-change-good-surfing-other-sports-not-so-much-ncna1017131

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

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.

Surf Height-Swell Height Correlation Table

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