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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: Thursday, June 7, 2018 3:34 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
2.0 - California & 2.2 - Hawaii
Using the 'Summer' 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 6/4 thru Sun 6/10

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   

Small New Zealand Swell Hitting CA
Swell Radiating North from Deep Central SPac


On Thursday, June 7, 2018 :

  • Buoy 233 (Pearl Harbor Entrance): Seas were 2.7 ft @ 12.5 secs with swell 1.7 ft @ 12.6 secs from 166 degrees.
  • Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 3.5 ft @ 6.2 secs with swell 1.2 ft @ 14.2 secs from 187 degrees. Wind at the buoy was north at 4 kts. Water temperature 63.5 degs. At Ventura (Buoy 111) swell was 3.0 ft @ 6.4 secs from 266 degrees. At Santa Monica (028) swell was 1.4 ft @ 15.5 secs from 214 degrees. At Camp Pendleton (043) swell was 1.4 ft @ 15.5 secs from 223 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma (191) swell was 4.1 ft @ 7.3 secs from 282 degrees.
  • Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 8.0 ft @ 12.0 secs with northwest windswell 6.4 ft @ 11.6 secs from 318 degrees. Wind at the buoy was northwest at 12-14 kts. Water temp 52.2 degs.

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).
- 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).
- 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.
- up to waist high swell. Also called 'Background' swell.

Surf Heights for Hawaii should be consider 'Hawaiian Scale' if period exceeds 14 secs.

Current Conditions
On Thursday (6/7) in North and Central CA local north windswell was producing surf at head high to 1 ft overhead and pretty lumpy and unorganized and soft with small whitecaps on top early. Protected breaks were waist to chest high and almost clean but still a bit warbled and soft. At Santa Cruz surf was waist to chest high on the bigger sets and clean and lined up but slow. In Southern California up north surf was flat to knee high and clean but with a fair amount of warble in the water. In North Orange Co southern hemi background swell was producing waves at chest high and lined up but pretty hacked by south winds. South Orange Country's best breaks had some sets in the waist to chest high range and soft but with clean conditions. In North San Diego surf was waist to chest high and pretty clean and lined up. Hawaii's North Shore was waist high or so and clean and almost rideable at select breaks. The South Shore was still getting leftover New Zealand swell with set waves chest high and lined up and clean but getting softer. The East Shore was getting east windswell at thigh to waist high and chopped by east trades.

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

Meteorological Overview
On Thursday (6/7) southern hemi swell originating from a gale previously just southeast of New Zealand was all but gone in Hawaii through a few rideable pulses were still pushing through. That same swell was weakly hitting California now and was formed by a small cutoff gale that formed southeast of New Zealand on Mon (5/28) producing a short lived and small area of 30 ft seas aimed north. Also in North and Central California small swell from a gale previously over the North Dateline region was hitting but buried in locally generated north windswell. Of more interest is a decent gale that developed in the deep Central South Pacific Fri-Sat (6/2) pushing north and producing seas to 37 ft. And secondary fetch followed Sun (6/3) adding more 37-40 ft seas on top pushing northeast. So a decent run of southern hemi swell looks possible for California with some sideband energy for Hawaii. A broader but weaker system previously forecast to traverse the Southwest Pacific Thurs-Sat (6/9) has been downgraded. A cutoff low is forecast Sat-Sun in the Central Pacific with a small area of 32 ft seas aimed north. And maybe a stronger system is to develop in the deep South Central Pacific a week out producing 31 ft seas aimed north. but over all a pretty weak pattern is in control now.


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

North Pacific

Surface Analysis
On Thursday AM (6/7) local northwest windswell was overriding background energy from a gale previously over the North Dateline region for breaks in North and Central CA. Some minimal swell from the North Dateline region was also hitting Hawaii (see North Dateline Gale below).

Over the next 72 hours no swell producing weather systems of interest are forecast other than possible tropical activity (see Tropical Update below).

North Dateline Gale
A weak gale formed just west of the North Dateline region on Fri PM (6/1) with 40 kt west winds over a small area aimed east and seas building from 20 ft at 49.0N 171E. The gale was impacting the Aleutians on the dateline Sat AM (6/2) with 35-40 kt west winds and seas to 28 ft over a tiny area at 50.5N 177.5E, then is to quickly quickly fading. Small swell is possible radiating mainly east towards the US West Coast.

Hawaii: Swell fading Thurs AM (6/7) from 1.4 ft @ 11 secs (1.5 ft). Swell Direction: 330 degrees

North CA: Expect swell arrival on Thurs AM (6/7) with swell building mid-AM to 2.7 ft @ 13-14 secs (3.5 ft). Swell fading Fri AM (6/8) from 2.4 ft @ 12-13 secs (3.0 ft). This swell to be buried in local windswell in California. Swell Direction: 306 degrees


Windswell Forecast
California: On Thursday AM (6/7) high pressure at 1024 mbs was centered 600 nmiles west of Southern CA while weak low pressure at 992 mbs was in the Eastern Gulf of Alaska. The result was a weak gradient along the Central CA coast producing north winds at 15 kts from Pt Reyes southward and up to 20 kts near Pt Conception making for junky short period local north windswell there. More of the same is forecast on Fri (6/8) with north winds limited to 20 kts over Pt Conception and 15 kts up to Pt Arena. Sat (6/9) no real change is forecast as low pressure starts fading later in the Eastern Gulf but still cutting the legs off the gradient. Sunday (6/10) the high is to build to 1028 mbs moving to within 300 nmiles of the Central CA coast while another low pressure system moves into the Eastern Gulf with north winds building to 25-30 kts over Central CA and 20 kts up to Pt Arena. Windswell building some but still very raw and junky. See QuikCASTs for details.

Hawaii: On Thursday (6/7) no real easterly fetch of interest was occurring relative to Hawaii offering no windswell generation potential. But on Fri (6/8) high pressure is to retrograde some positioned 900 nmiles north of Hawaii ridging east producing a coherent fetch of 15 kt east winds extending from California the whole way to Hawaii but focused mainly a bit south of the Islands but increasing odds for sideband windswell production some. On Sat (6/9) the fetch is to build pushing 15-20 kts and focusing north more offering increasing odds for windswell production. And more of the same is forecast on Sunday (6/10). See QuikCASTs for details.


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


Tropical Update
Two tropical systems are being monitored:
Tropical Storm Aletta was 480 nmiles south of Cabo San Lucas Mexico on Thurs AM (6/7) with 55 kt winds tracking west-northwest. Aletta is to reach hurricane strength in the evening at 65 ks continuing on a west-northwest track. Strength to reach 75 kts on Fri PM (6/8) holding into Sat AM (6/9) while continue west-northwest, then fading 120 nmiles south of the Island of Clarion Sun AM (6/10) dissipating from there. But the GFS model has Aletta tracking more northwest to north on Sat (6/9) and into the Southern CA swell window. Something to monitor.
West Pacific System - A broad area of low pressure is forecast developing just east of the Northern Philippines on Fri (6/8) tracking northeast and building through the weekend south of Japan with seas to 40+ ft at 26N 136E. this system is to recurve northeast and be east of Japan on Tues AM (6/12) with 50 kt winds and 46 ft seas at 36N 156E. This is not believable at this early date.

California Nearshore Forecast
On Thursday AM (6/7) modest high pressure at 1024 mbs was ridging into Central CA generating a pressure gradient and north winds at 150 kts along the North Ca coast and up to 20 kts for southern Central CA. More of the same is expected on Fri (6/8) with 15 kt north winds over nearshore North CA waters and up to 20-25 kts focused on Pt Conception. Sat (6/9) the gradient is to start building later with 20 kts north winds building from Pt Arena southward and up to 30 kts over Pt Conception. On Sun (6/10) north winds are to be 20 kts from Cape Mendocino and 25 kts from Monterey Bay southward and up to 30 kts solid over Pt Conception. Monday (6/11) the gradient is to be lifting north with 25 kt north winds over the entire North and Central Coast from Pt Arena early fading slightly mid-day mid-day, then rebuilding later. Tues AM (6/12) the gradient is to lift north with north winds 25 kts over North CA with a near eddy flow over Central CA waters. Wednesday more of the same is forecast but with the eddy flow gone and north winds 20 kts raking the Central CA coast and holding if not building some into Thurs (6/14).

South Pacific

On Thursday (6/7) the southern branch of the jetstream was tracking east under New Zealand focused on the 60S latitude line tracking east-northeast at 110 kts forming a weak trough over the deep Southwest Pacific and offering limited support for low pressure development there. But east of 160W the jet was falling southeast with winds to 130 kts forming a ridge pushing over Antarctic Ice covering the entire Southeast Pacific. Over the next 72 hours that trough is to weaken with winds fading to 90 kts while tracking east to the Central Pacific later Fri (6/8) with support for low pressure development fading out. Effectively a zonal flow is to be in effect with the southern branch tracking east down at 65S and weak offering no support for gale formation anywhere in the South Pacific. Beyond 72 hours no change is forecast until Wed (6/13) when a weak trough is to start developing in the deep Central South Pacific being fed by 80-90 kts winds pushing north-northeast into Thurs (6/14) offering only weak support for gale formation.

Surface Analysis  
On Thursday (6/7) swell from a gale previously southeast of New Zealand is all but gone in Hawaii and hitting California (See New Zealand Gale below). And swell from a more recent gale system was pushing northeast from the deep South Central Pacific (see South Pacific Gale below).

Over the next 72 hours a weak gale is forecast to track east across the deep South Pacific. And a cutoff gale to form over the upper latitudes of the Central South Pacific.

On Wed PM (6/6) a broad low pressure system was developing southeast of New Zealand generating 35-40 kt west winds over a broad area just north of the Ross Ice Shelf with seas building to 29 ft at 58S 175.5E. On Thurs AM (6/7) winds were southwest at 35-40 kts while tracking east with seas building to 31 ft at 57S 172W. In the evening southwest winds to continue at 30-35 kts and seas 29 ft at 57S 160W. On Fri AM (6/8) fetch is to start fading from the west at mostly 30 kts with seas 28 ft down at 60S 147W. In the evening fetch is to be fading from 30 kts over a smaller area aimed east with 27 ft seas fading at 63S 130W. This system is to be gone after that. Something to monitor.

On Sat PM (6/9) a gale is to develop south of Tahiti producing a small area of south winds at 45 kts aimed north with seas building from 34 ft over a tiny area at 39S 148W. On Sun AM (6/10) south fetch is to be fading from 40 kts with seas fading from 32 ft at 33.5S 147W. In the evening fetch is to be fading from 35 kts from the south and stationary with seas fading from 29 ft at 34.5S 146.5W aimed north. This system is to be gone after that. Given this system rather north position, if it forms as forecast some decent swell could result for Tahiti, Hawaii and California. But cutoff gales like this one seem to always be overhyped by the model.


New Zealand Gale
A gale developed southeast of New Zealand Sun PM (5/27) generating south winds at 40-45 kts over a small area aimed north with seas building from 28 ft over a small area at 47S 172W. By Mon AM (5/28) south winds continued at 40-45 kts with seas building to 29 ft at 47.5S 168W. South fetch faded some in the evening at 40 kts with seas holding at 29-30 ft at 46.5S 164W. On Tues AM (5/29) south fetch faded from 30 kts with seas fading from 25 ft over a small area at 44.5S 165W. Some limited south swell could reach Tahiti and Hawaii. Something to monitor.

South CA: Swell continues on Thurs (6/7) at 1.6 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.0-2.5 ft) early. Swell gone after that. Swell Direction 216 degrees

North CA: Swell continues on Thurs (6/7) at 1.6 ft @ 15 secs (2.0-2.5 ft) early. Swell fading Fri (6/8) from 1.4 ft @ 14 secs (2.0 ft). Swell Direction 215 degrees


South Pacific Gale (Swell #2S)
A new gale developed in the deep Central South Pacific on Fri AM (6/1) generating a decent sized area of 45 kt south winds with seas building from 30 ft at 62S 163.5W. In the evening the fetch is to lift north with a broader core of 45 kt south winds with 36 ft seas over a building area at 58S 157.5W. On Sat AM (6/2) 40 kt south winds continued lifting north with seas 37 ft at 53.5S 151W. In the evening southwest fetch rapidly faded to 30 kts and seas fading from 32 ft at 49S 150W as a new fetch started developing southwest of the original fetch producing south winds at 45 kts over a solid area and sea built from 36 ft at 58S 167W aimed northeast. On Sun AM (6/3) 45 kt south winds were lifting northeast with seas 38 ft at 54S 155W aimed northeast. In the evening fetch was fading from 40-45 kts from the southwest with seas 38 ft at 50S 144W. On Mon AM (6/4) fetch was fading from 35 kts with seas 33 ft at 48.5S 138W aimed northeast. This system faded from there. Something to monitor.

Hawaii: Expect swell arrival on Fri (6/8) building to 2.0 ft @ 17-18 secs later (3.5 ft). Swell peaking on Sat (6/9) building to 2.3 ft @ 16 secs mid-AM (3.5-4.0 ft). A secondary pulse is forecast arriving later Sun (6/10) building to 2.3 ft @ 15-16 secs (3.5 ft). Swell fading Mon (6/11) from 2.0 ft @ 14 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell Direction: 181 degrees

Southern CA: Swell arrival on Sat (6/9) building to 1.9 ft @ 20 secs later (3.5 ft). On Sun (6/10) swell building to 3.5 ft @ 18 secs later (6.0-6.5 ft). Swell holding on Mon (6/11) at 3.9-4.0 ft @ 17 secs (6.5-7.0 ft). Swell fading some on Tues (6/12) from 3.7 ft @ 16-17 secs (6.0 ft). Swell fading Wed (6/13) from 3.1 ft @ 15 secs (4.5 ft). Residuals on Thurs (6/140 fading from 2.5 ft @ 14 secs (3.5 ft). Swell Direction: 198-204 degrees centered on 200 degrees

North CA: Swell arrival on Sat (6/9) building to 1.3 ft @ 20 secs later (2.5 ft). Swell building on Sun (6/10) building to 2.6 ft @ 18 secs late (4.7 ft). Swell continues on Mon (6/11) at 3.0-3.1 ft @ 18 secs early (5.5 ft). Swell fading Tues (6/12) from 2.9 ft @ 16-17 secs early (4.5-5.0 ft). Swell fading Wed (6/13) from 2.4 ft @ 15-16 secs (3.5-4.0 ft). Residuals on Thurs (6/14) fading from 1.8 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 196-202 degrees centered on 198 degrees

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 no swell producing fetch of interest is forecast.

Windswell Forecast
On Mon (6/11) high pressure at 1024 mbs is to be positioned northeast of Hawaii and 900 nmiles west of Central CA ridging towards California producing a gradient and 25 kt north winds from Bodega Bay south to Pt Conception resulting in building but still very junky short period windswell mainly for Central CA. On Tues (6/12) the gradient is to be fading and focused over North CA producing north winds at 20-25 kts with perhaps an eddy flow over all of Central CA. Smaller and cleaner windswell is possible south of Pt Reyes. Wednesday the gradient is to hold if not build some while falling south with north winds 25 kts over most of North CA and 20 kt north winds over all of Central CA. More junky windswell expected. This pattern to hold on Thurs (6/14).

Hawaii: The gradient is to hold on Mon (6/11) producing 15 kt easterly trades from California to Hawaii resulting in easterly short period windswell for exposed east facing shores of the Hawaiian Islands. But on Tues (6/12) that fetch is to be fading with windswell dropping out. On Wed (6/13) the gradient is to return with 15 kt east winds again producing limited easterly windswell and getting better focused on Hawaii on Thurs (6/14) with a solid fetch of 15 kt easterly trades extending the whole way from California to the Islands.


South Pacific

Beyond 72 hours a gale is forecast developing in the deep South Central Pacific on Wed PM (6/13) producing a tiny area of 45 kts south winds and seas building from 29 ft at 61.5S 154W. On Thurs AM (6/14) 45 kt south winds to be pushing north with seas building to 31 ft at 55S 149W aimed north. Low odds of this developing as it is nearly a week out on the forecast charts.

More details to follow...


MJO/ENSO Forecast

Large Kelvin Wave Continues Slowly Erupting on Equatorial EPac

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 have not stopped, 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, suggesting the demise of La Nina.

Summer 2018 - Swell Generation Potential (for California & Hawaii) = 4.0
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)

KWGA/Equatorial Surface Wind Analysis & Short-term Forecast:
Analysis (TAO Buoys): As of Wed (6/6) 5 day average winds were from the east over the bulk of the equatorial Pacific but far weaker over the Kelvin Wave Generation Area. Anomalies were neutral over the equatorial East Pacific and neutral over the KWGA.
1 Week Forecast (GFS Model): (6/7) Modest east anomalies were over the eastern half of the KWGA with light west anomalies over the extreme west KWGA. The forecast suggests east anomalies are to retrograde some filling the KWGA by 6/9 then disintegrating to near neutral by 6/11 with west anomalies building over the entirety of the KWGA 6/12 and holding through the end of the forecast period on 6/14. The current Inactive Phase of the MJO is now looking to fade out quickly. Also strong westerly anomalies are forecast over the equator south of California to a point south of Hawaii 2 days from now holding through the end of the forecast period. Interesting.

Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East

Longer Range MJO/WWB Projections:  
OLR Models: (6/6) The Active/Wet Phase of the MJO was now over the West Pacific almost reaching to the dateline. The statistical model depicts the Active/Wet Phase is to dissipate on day 3 of the run and hold with a neutral pattern in control through the end of the model run (day 15) while another active Phase building over the Maritime Continent. The dynamic model depicts the same thing but with the Inactive Phase possibly developing at day 15 in the far West Pacific. The models are now at least in sync regarding the short term forecast.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS): (6/7) The ECMF model depicts the Active Phase of the MJO was modest over the West Pacific. It is to rapidly decay while tracking east moving over the dateline at day 15. The GEFS model has not updated.
40 day Upper Level Model: (6/7) This model depicts a weak Inactive Phase is fading over Central America while a new modest Active Phase is moving into the West Pacific. The Active Phase is to track east and moving through the Pacific into Central America on 6/27. A modest Inactive Phase is to be developing over the West Pacific on 6/20 pushing to the East Pacific and Central America at 7/12. Another weak Active Phase is to follow in the West on 7/7 tracking east to the Central Pacific through the end of the model run on 7/17. This model runs about 1-2 weeks ahead of what happens at the surface.
4 Week CFS Model (850 mb wind): (6/6) East anomalies to retrograde west from 150E through 6/11 associated with an atmospheric Kelvin Wave. After that west anomalies to build some west to 160E while east anomalies hold from 160E and points east of there through 6/23. Building west anomalies to follow after that.
3 Month CFS Model (850 mb wind): (6/7) This model depicts the Inactive Phase of the MJO was all but gone over the KWGA with neutral anomalies in control of the KWGA. The Active Phase of the MJO is developing and forecast to fill the KWGA by 6/10 but with a short-lived pulse of east anomalies forecast in the West KWGA 6/8-6/11 then fading. After that weak west anomalies are forecast filling the KWGA while the Active Phase holds through 6/19. A neutral MJO signal is to develop after that starting 6/20 holding through 7/10 but with west anomalies holding in the KWGA. The Active Phase is to follow 7/18 through 8/20 with west anomalies holding in the KWGA. Even after the Active Phase fades and through the end of the model run on 9/4, west anomalies are to be building steadily and solidly. The low pass filter indicates a low pressure bias is fully in control of the KWGA reaching east to 145W and forecast to hold if not ease east some for the foreseeable future and building from 2 contour lines to 3 starting 7/12. This is good news for the coming Fall-Winter season. The high pressure bias is limited to an area south of California and shrinking at the end of the model run and inland over California. The La Nina bias is gone. The expectation is that the atmosphere and ocean will begin to be coupled 3 months after the start of the transition or on 8/8 (low pressure bias officially filled the KWGA starting on 5/8) in a more favorable configuration to support storm production in the Pacific.

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

Subsurface Waters Temps
TAO Array: (6/7) Today in the far West Pacific water temps are 30 degs reaching east to 165E. The 28 deg isotherm line is stabilizing after moving eastward from the dateline last winter to 165W on 5/15 to 160W 5/22 and 159W on 5/29 and then back to 160W today from the surface to 75 meters deep. The 24 deg isotherm was stable at 115 meters deep at 140W and 75 meters deep at 120W deepening to 40 meters into Ecuador. Anomaly wise in the East Pacific negative temperatures are gone as warm waters from a Kelvin Wave are building in from the west at depth. Warm anomalies at depth were easing east +3.0 degs at 145W down 150 meters pushing east with +4 degs anomalies building east to 110W and reaching east to the Galapagos. These waters are starting to breach the surface from 125W and points east of there. It appears the Kelvin Wave is gaining eastward momentum an starting to erupt. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 6/2 depicts a large Kelvin Wave starting at 160W at +3.5 degs extending unbroken to the east to 100W with lesser warm water reaching the Ecuadorian coast. The warm pool was breaching the surface between 100W-135W. No residual cool water from La Nina are indicated. The GODAS animation appears to be 1 week behind the TAO data but also is more detailed and accurately modeled.
Sea Level Anomalies: (6/2) This update has upgraded yet again. Positive anomalies were solid from the West Equatorial Pacific to the east at +5-10 cms reaching from New Guinea to 95W with one break and then 0-5 cm anomalies reaching east of there to Ecuador. No negative anomalies were indicated expect just off the coast of northern Peru. The La Nina cool pool is gone.

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: (6/6) The latest images (1.2 3.4) indicate very weak localized cool anomalies along the immediate coast of Peru and very shallow. But of more significance was a building area of warm water erupting on the oceans surface on the equator from the Galapagos west to 140W and also over a broad but weaker pocket well south of the equator from 90W to 115W. A broad area of warming was also filling the area south of Mexico and out to the dateline. The remnants of the La Nina cool pool were south of the equator between 115W-170W and south of 4S.
Hi-res 7 day Trend (6/6): Weak cooling was occurring just off Ecuador to the Galapagos. A weak warming trend was indicated from the Galapagos west to 145W. Generic weak spotty cooling was off the immediate Peru coast.
Hi-res Overview: (6/6) A few pixels of cool water was indicated along the immediate coast of Peru. Otherwise warm water was building from Ecuador west on the equator over the Galapagos and west from there to the dateline from 4S up to 20N and building in coherence. Weak warming was also further off the coast of Peru to 115W and reaching north to the equator. The only cool water was in the fading remnant pocket from La Nina limited to an area south of the equator between 150W-160W and south of 4S. Overall the cooling pattern is steadily loosing density and drifting west.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (6/7) Today's temps were rising some at -0.428, up from -0.819 on 5/22, and that down from a recent peak rising to +0.459 on 5/13. This is part of a larger rising trend that started 4/10 indicative of the collapse of La Nina. Overall temps had been steadily marching upwards since late December.
Nino 3.4 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (6/7) Today temps were falling some from -0.066 on 6/5 down to -0.151 today. Previously temps were -0.266 on 6/2, -0.427 on 5/12 after having reached up to -0.254 degs on 5/1. Temps have been steadily rising since 3/27 when they were down at -1.2 degs.

Click for Full Sized Image

CFSV2 Forecast for Nino3.4 SST Anomalies

SST Anomaly Projections
CFSv2 Uncorrected Data (6/7) The forecast depicts temps bottomed out at -0.75 in Nov 2017 and have been slowly rising since, up to -0.5 in mid-March and -0.30 in early April. The forecast calls for a steady increase from here forward with neutral temps now, pushing up to +0.65 degs in early July and rising in early Oct to +0.90 degs and +1.00 degs in Nov and holding there into the Jan 2019 timeframe. This suggests La Nina is gone and that perhaps El Nino is to build through the Summer and Fall of 2018. Most other models are also suggesting a possible turn to minimal weak El Nino conditions by late Fall.
IRI Consensus Plume: The mid-May Plume depicts temps at 0.0 degs as of 5/18 and are to slowly rise from here forward, to +0.4 in August and +0.7 in November and +0.8 in December hold there. See chart here - link. It looks like La Nina is fading out and a weak El Nino might develop. The CFSv2 is in the low end of that pack.

Atmospheric Coupling (Indicating the presence of El Nino in the atmosphere driven by the ocean):
Southern Oscillation Index (negative is good, positive bad) (6/7): The daily index was falling today at -8.79. The 30 day average was falling today at +3.26 suggesting the Inactive Phase of the MJO was fading. The 90 day average was falling some at +3.95 suggesting a neutral ENSO pattern was holding in the atmosphere biased weakly towards La Nina. This is expected for a month or two more.
ESPI (like SOI but based on satellite confirmed precipitation. Positive and/or rising is good, negative and/or falling is bad): (6/7) Today the index was rising some at -0.91 after dropping to -1.04 on 6/5, down from -0.70 on 5/20 and -0.60 on 5/17, and the high of -0.36 on Fri (5/11) and -0.38 on Thurs (5/10), down from -0.35 on 4/26, but up from -1.02 on 4/5 and up from -1.13 on 3/27. The trend is upward but still less than the -0.33 reading in late Feb. That was was up from -1.11 on 1/29. The trend suggests La Nina is not gone, but fading steadily. Last years La Nina reached -1.94 on 11/2/16 and then fell to -2.20 on 6/28/17. It held pretty negative through Jan 2018. This index is a forerunner of what happens in the ocean by 2-3 months in developing El Nino and La Nina events. The goal is to have it rise to at least -0.5 before a significant change could be suggested.

Pacific Decadal Oscillation: The PDO is weakly positive, even though La Nina is in play.
Per NOAAs index recent values: April 2017=+0.53, May=+0.29, June=+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= -0.10, Mar= -0.51, April = -0.85, May =-0.61. 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): Jan 2017 = +0.77, Feb = +0.70, Mar = +0.74, April=+1.12, May=+0.88, June=+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. 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

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