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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: Thursday, June 28, 2018 2:33 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 6/25 thru Sun 7/1

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 Tracking Northeast
Otherwise the SPac to Remain Quiet


On Thursday, June 28, 2018 :

  • Buoy 233 (Pearl Harbor Entrance): Seas were 3.7 ft @ 14.3 secs with swell 2.0 ft @ 14.0 secs from 161 degrees.
  • Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 4.1 ft @ 11.4 secs with swell 1.7 ft @ 13.6 secs from 193 degrees. Wind at the buoy was northeast at 4-8 kts. Water temperature 66.4 degs. At Ventura (Buoy 111) swell was 2.9 ft @ 6.0 secs from 268 degrees. At Santa Monica (028) swell was 1.3 ft @ 16.0 secs from 212 degrees. At Camp Pendleton (043) swell was 1.3 ft @ 16.1 secs from 208 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma (191) swell was 1.8 ft @ 16.3 secs from 190 degrees.
  • Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 11.3 ft @ 10.0 secs with northwest windswell 9.6 ft @ 9.0 secs from 321 degrees. Wind at the buoy was northwest at 23-29 kts. Water temp 55.6 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 (6/28) in North and Central CA local north windswell was producing surf at up to 2 ft overhead at exposed breaks and totally whitecapped and a blown out mess. Protected breaks were waist to chest high and cleaner but still warbled and mushy and uninviting. At Santa Cruz surf was thigh high with a few waist high sets occasionally and clean and weak and mushy. In Southern California up north surf was maybe waist high and warbled even though there was no local wind and gutless looking like pure windswell. In North Orange Co southern hemi swell was producing occasional sets in the shoulder to head high range and lined up with northwest windswell intermixed with textured conditions but generally fairly clean. South Orange Country's best breaks were head high on the sets and clean and lined up with near calm wind but some northwest windswell lump was running through it. In North San Diego surf was chest high on the bigger sets and lined up and fairly clean but with some windswell lump running through it. Hawaii's North Shore was flat and clean. The South Shore was getting southern hemi swell with sets at head high and lined up and clean but inconsistent. The East Shore was getting east windswell at chest high and chopped from moderate east trades.

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

Meteorological Overview
On Thursday (6/28) very south angled swell was fading at exposed breaks in California having been previously generated in the far Southeast Pacific on Thurs-Fri (6/15) with 30 ft seas aimed northeast. South swell was hitting Hawaii originating from a gale that developed Wed-Thurs (6/21) southeast of New Zealand lifting northeast with 33 ft seas aimed northeast. The tropics are quiet for the moment. And nothing real is on the charts for the next week targeting either California or Hawaii other than windswell. The swell drought continues.


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

North Pacific

Surface Analysis
On Thursday AM (6/28) no swell of interest was in the water nor being generated in the North Pacific other than local windswell.

Over the next 72 hours no swell producing weather systems of interest are forecast other than windswell.

Windswell Forecast
California: On Thurs (6/28) a pressure gradient is in place over North California nearshore waters driven by high pressure at 1026 mbs centered 1300 nmiles west of Central CA producing 25 kt north winds from Cape Mendocino to the Golden Gate and hugging the coast with 20 kt north winds down to Pt Conception continuing the pattern of locally produced junky windswell. Friday (6/29) the gradient is to start building while lifting north late to 30 kts over North CA with 20 kt north winds still holding along the Central Coast and windswell still junky. Saturday (6/30) the gradient is to build more while lifting north some with 30 kt north winds over all of North CA with a well developed eddy flow (south winds) taking hold from Bodega Bay southward. Larger and somewhat cleaner windswell for Central CA possible. More of the same is expected on Sun (7/1) with north winds 30 kts early and the eddy flow well developed for Central CA up to Pt Reyes. See QuikCASTs for details.

Hawaii: On Thurs (6/28) the same high pressure system off California was producing a decent fetch of east winds at 15+ kts extending most of the way from North CA to Hawaii and aimed well at all the Hawaiian Islands resulting in steady modest easterly windswell along exposed east fading shores. By Fri (6/29) the fetch is to start fading with windswell production dissipating and windswell fading along east facing shores of the Hawaiian Islands. On Sat (6/30) no windswell production is forecast. Sunday (7/1) easterly fetch at 15 kts is to start creeping west again from California but still 1000 nmiles east of Hawaii. See QuikCASTs for details.


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


Tropical Update
Tropical Storm Emilia was 500 nmiles south-southwest of Cabo San Lucas Mexico tracking west-northwest at 12 kts with sustained winds 35 kts. Emilia is to continue on this heading while slowly strengthening into Sat AM (6/30) with winds then reaching 50 kts positioned 900 nmiles south of Southern CA but still heading west-northwest and all fetch aimed towards the Northwest Pacific. A quick fade is to follow. No swell production is forecast.

The models suggest a far stronger system is to develop well south of Cabo on Mon (7/2) taking a more northwesterly track.


California Nearshore Forecast
On Thursday AM (6/28) north winds were 25 kts from Cape Mendocino down to the Golden Gate and 15-20 kt north winds down to Pt Conception. Fri (6/29) more of the same is expected but with north winds building to 25-30 kts over all of North CA later and 20 kt north winds down to Pt Conception. Sat (6/30) north winds build to 30+ kts over all of North CA but with a developing eddy flow (south winds) over all of Central CA up to Pt Reyes later. Sunday (7/1) north winds to continue at 30-35 kts for North CA early down to Pt Arena with an eddy flow from Bodega Bay-Pt Arena and south of there. Monday (7/2) north winds at 35 kts are to be limited to Cape Mendocino with a weak eddy flow from Pt Arena southward. Tues (7/3) the gradient is to be falling south with north winds 25-30 kts over all of North CA and a weak eddy flow (south winds) is forecast for the Central CA coastline. Wednesday (7/4) north winds to be 20 kts over North CA and 15 kts for Central CA fading to 15 kts everywhere later and holding there into Thurs (7/5).

South Pacific

On Thursday (6/28) the southern branch of the jetstream was tracking east under the Tasman Sea down at 65S then lifting northeast reaching up just east of New Zealand forming trough but weak with winds 100 kts feeding up into it offering minimal support for gale development in lower levels of the atmosphere there. East of there the jetstream started falling back south again over the Southeast Pacific down to 63S and tracking east on that latitude the whole way to near Southern Chile with no troughs indicated and no support for gale development suggested. This trough is to ease east into Fri (6/29) while weakening Sat-Sun (7/1) over the Central Pacific and no longer supportive of gale development in lower levels of the atmosphere. Beyond 72 hours starting Mon (7/2) dual ridges are to set up in the southern branch of the jet, one pushing south under New Zealand and the second over the far Southeast Pacific actively suppressing support for gale development. On Tues (7/3) a weak trough is to supposedly form between the two ridges in the deep Central Pacific but mostly cutoff from any significant wind energy. Wed-Thurs (7/5) the ridge from the west is to be sweeping east and fairly energetic pushing into Antarctica offering no support for gale development.

Surface Analysis  
On Thursday (6/28) small swell from a gale previously on the eastern edge of the California swell window was fading out in California (see Southeast Pacific Gale below). Also another gale developed southeast of New Zealand providing some odds for small swell to result (see Southwest Pacific Gale below). And a small system developed in the Tasman Sea pushing filtered energy towards Hawaii (see Tasman Sea Gale below).

Over the next 72 hours no swell production is forecast in the South Pacific.

Southeast Pacific Gale
On Thurs PM (6/14) a gale started building in the far Southeast Pacific with 40 kt southwest winds and seas building to 29 ft at 55S 137.5W. On Fri AM (6/15) fetch was fading from 40 kts and on the edge of the CA swell window with seas 29 ft at 50.5S 125W aimed northeast. This system moved east of the CA swell window after that. But a second fetch started developing right behind it on Fri PM (6/15) with 45 kt southwest winds and seas building to 28 ft at 55S 128.5W. On Sat AM (6/16) 50 kt southwest winds were east of the SCal swell window with 35 ft seas at 53S 115.5W, again east of the SCal swell window. Low odds of small sideband swell radiating north towards SCal. This system is to be east of the CA swell window after that but is to continue building targeting mainly Southern Chile.

Southern CA: Swell dissipating on Thurs (6/28) fading from 2.3 ft @ 12-13 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell fading after that. Swell Direction: 170 degrees

North CA: Swell fading on Thurs (6/28) at 2.1 ft @ 12-13 secs (2.5 ft). Swell fading after that. Swell Direction: 168 degrees


Southwest Pacific Gale
On Tues PM (6/19) a modestly broad fetch of 40 kt southwest winds started developing just south of New Zealand tracking northeast with seas building. On Wed AM (6/20) winds built to 45 kts solid aimed northeast with seas building to 33 ft at 58S 175W 9208 degs CA and shadowed by Tahiti). In the evening fetch was racing east-northeast and fading from 40 kts with seas 30 ft at 54.5S 162W aimed east-northeast (204 degrees and unshadowed in SCal). On Thurs AM (6/21) secondary fetch was fading from 30-35 kts from the northeast with seas fading from 26 ft at 50S 162W. In the evening no fetch or seas of interest are forecast. Something to monitor.

Hawaii: Swell holding on Thurs (6/28) at 2.1 ft @ 15-16 secs (3.0-3.5 ft). Swell continues on Fri (6/29) at 2.4 ft @ 14 secs (3.0-3.5 ft). Residuals fading on Sat (6/30) from 1.9 ft @ 13 secs early (2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 190 degrees

Southern CA: Expect swell arrival on Fri (6/29) building to 1.3 ft @ 18 secs later (2.0-2.5 ft). On Sat (6/30) swell is to build to 1.9 ft @ 16 secs later (3.0 ft). Swell continues on Sun (7/1) at 2.1 ft @ 16 secs (3.0-3.5 ft). Swell fades on Mon (7/2) from 1.9 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Dribbles on Tues (7/3) at 1.5 ft @ 13-14 secs (2.0 ft). Swell Direction: 208 degrees

North CA: Expect swell arrival on Fri (6/29) building to 1.0 ft @ 18 secs later (1.5-2.0 ft). On Sat (6/30) swell builds to 1.8 ft @ 16-17 secs later (3.0 ft). Swell continues on Sun (7/1) at 1.8 ft @ 15-16 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell fading Mon (7/2) from 1.5 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 208 degrees


Tasman Sea Gale
A gale moved into the Tasman Sea on Sat AM (6/23) with 29 ft seas at 43.5S 150.5E aimed northeast. It tracked east in the evening with 29 ft seas at 47.5S 155.5E and then fell southeast on Sun AM (6/24) with 29 ft seas at 50.5S 165E. Limited energy pushing east of New Zealand on Sun PM (6/24) with seas 25 ft at 50S 170E, then dissipated from there. Limited swell possible for Fiji and Hawaii.

Hawaii: Filtered swell for Hawaii expected to arrive on Sat (6/30) pushing 1.0 ft @ 17-18 secs later (1.5-2.0 ft). Swell to build on Sun (7/1) pushing 1.5 ft @ 16-17 secs (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell fading on Mon (7/2) from 1.3 ft @ 14-15 secs (1.5-2.0 ft). Also swell from the east side of New Zealand arriving later building to 1.5 ft @ 15-16 secs late (2.0-2.5 ft). On Tues (7/3) swell up to 2.0 ft @ 14 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell Direction: 215 degrees turning to 195 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
Monday (7/2) the core of the gradient is to be limited to Cape Mendocino at 30-35 kts with the eddy flow reaching north to nearly Pt Arena. Windswell fading some but still decent. By Tues (7/3) the gradient is to be reorganizing producing north winds at 25-30 kts while falling south some from Bodega Bay northward and the eddy flow decaying south of there and windswell small in Central CA but still clean early. Wednesday (7/4) northwest windswell is to be fading with northwest winds fading from 15-20 kts early along all the North and Central CA coast and dropping to 15 kts late and holding there on Thurs (7/6).

Hawaii: Monday (7/2) east-to northeast fetch is to build some extending from CA the whole way again to Hawaii at 15 kts starting to rebuild local easterly windswell along east facing shores. On Tues (7/3) a fully developed fetch of 15-20 kt easterly winds is to extend from California west to a point just north of the Hawaiian Islands and beyond. Good odds for sideband windswell radiating into all the Hawaiian Islands but without the fetch actually impacting the Islands. Interesting. Wednesday (7/4) the fetch is to be fading from California to 900 nmiles east of the Islands with 15-20 kts east-northeast fetch pushing into the Islands resulting in limited east windswell. Thurs (7/5) east fetch is to be fading and sinking in coverage with odds for windswell production fading out.


South Pacific

Beyond 72 hours no swell producing fetch of interest is forecast.

More details to follow...


MJO/ENSO Forecast

Equatorial Warm Pool Building - ESPI near Neutral

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, and was building over equatorial waters in early June, suggesting the demise of La Nina.

Summer 2018 (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 (6/27) 5 day average winds were solidly from the east over the Eastern equatorial Pacific but weakening starting south of Hawaii and light over the Kelvin Wave Generation Area. Anomalies were neutral from the Galapagos to a point south of Hawaii then modest westerly from there to the dateline, then weakly westerly over the KWGA.
1 Week Forecast (GFS Model): (6/28) Light west anomalies were over the entire Eastern Pacific into the eastern KWGA from 170E and points east of there with moderate east anomalies from 160E and point west of there. The forecast suggests moderate east anomalies are to track east over the KWGA and building in strength some then pushing east of the dateline at the end of the model run on (7/5) while west anomalies start building in from the west. In short, an Inactive/Dry MJO signal looks to be tracking east with an Active/Wet signal building in the KWGA 5 days out.

Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East

Longer Range MJO/WWB Projections:  
OLR Models: (6/27) An modest Inactive/Dry MJO signal was filling the KWGA. The statistical model depicts the Inactive/Dry MJO signal is to slowly push east while fading and gone at day 5 of the model run with a weak Active signal starting to show in the far West Pacific at day 15. The dynamic model depicts the same thing but with a neutral pattern in control at the end of the model run. For the most part the models are in sync.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS): (6/28) The ECMF model depicts the Active Phase of the MJO was weak over the West Indian Ocean and is to fade more while tracking steadily east for the next 15 days, reaching the Maritime Continent 15 days out. The GEFS model depicts the same thing.
40 day Upper Level Model: (6/28) This model depicts an Inactive/Dry MJO signal was over the Central Pacific. It is to track east steadily reaching Central America 7/18. A weak version of the Active/Wet Phase is to develop in the West Pacific 7/6 easing east to the East Pacific at the end of the model run on 8/7. A neutral pattern is to follow in the West Pacific on 7/28 pushing to the Central Pacific at the end of the model run on 8/7.
4 Week CFS Model (850 mb wind): (6/26) East anomalies are to hold over the the western half of KWGA through 7/1 then start quickly dissipating and gone on 7/5. But by July 6 no east anomalies are forecast in the KWGA with west anomalies building and filling the KWGA and holding through the end of the model run on 7/24 with a strong burst 7/3-7/11 in the core of the KWGA.
3 Month CFS Model (850 mb wind): (6/28) This model depicts the Inactive Phase of the MJO was over the KWGA but with a neutral wind pattern in control. The Inactive Phase is to hold through 7/14 but with west anomalies starting to build centered at 175E near 7/6 even though the Inactive Phase is to be in control likely driven by a Rossby Wave. The Neutral Phase is to follow in the KWGA 7/15-8/5 but with a weak westerly flow continuing over the core of the KWGA. The Active Phase is to start building 8/8 holding through 9/9 with west anomalies building solid in the KWGA and strong 8/10-9/1 indicative of a Westerly Wind Burst (WWB). The Inactive Phase is to start building on 9/7-9/25 but with west anomalies holding in the KWGA, just weaker than previously. 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 to 135W on 7/21 and 110W at the end of the model run and building from 2 contour lines to 3 solidly starting 7/6 and holding thereafter. 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 moving inland over California and then gone. The La Nina bias is gone. The atmosphere and ocean are slowly becoming coupled and should fully reach that state 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: (6/28) Today in the far West Pacific water temps are 30 degs reaching east to 165E. The 28 deg isotherm line is starting to move east again, to 149W today. It was stationary on the dateline last winter, then started moving east to 165W on 5/15, then to 160W on 5/22 then to 154W on 6/19 and then to 150W on 6/24 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 rising to 40 meters into Ecuador. Anomaly wise in the East Pacific, warm waters from a Kelvin Wave are focused in the East Pacific at depth. Warm anomalies at +1.0 deg C were moving east from the far West Pacific and building at 135W and points east of there at +3.0 degs down 100 meters pushing and reaching east past the Galapagos. These waters are breaching the surface from 135W and points east of there. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 6/22 depicts a large Kelvin Wave starting at 145W building to +4.5 degs extending unbroken to the east to Ecuador and breaching the surface between 100W-145W. No residual cool water from La Nina are indicated. And more warm water was pushing east from 140E reaching over the dateline and joining the existing Kelvin Wave. in short, a river of warm water was spilling east from the Maritime Continent into the Pacific. The GODAS animation appears to be 1 week behind the TAO data but also is more detailed and accurately modeled.
Sea Level Anomalies: (6/22) Positive anomalies were solid from the West Equatorial Pacific at +5 cms reaching from the Maritime Continent north of New Guinea then east to the Ecuador with no breaks with anomalies in pockets at +5-10 cms. No negative anomalies were indicated. 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: (6/27) The latest images (1.2 3.4) indicate weak localized pockets of cool anomalies along the immediate coast of Peru and building some as compared to days past. But of more significance was a building area of warm water erupting on the oceans surface on the equator from the Galapagos west to 160W. This area was fully coherent today and almost completely filling the equator from 90W to the dateline 3 degs north and south of the equator. 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 and all but gone.
Hi-res 7 day Trend (6/27): Pockets of warming were scattered along the equator from Ecuador to the dateline and building some compared to the last report in 2 pockets over the Galapagos and at 100W. 2 pockets of cooling were indicated just west of the Galapagos at 95W and another at 110W. Generic spotty cooling previously off the immediate Peru coast was gone and pockets of spotty warming were now present.
Hi-res Overview: (6/27) A weak area of cool water was present along Chile and Peru. Otherwise warm water was building on the equator from Ecuador over the Galapagos and west from there to the dateline from 4S up to 20N and building in coherence. The only cool water was in the fading remnant pocket from La Nina limited to an area south of the equator starting at 4S between 110W-165W and steadily loosing coverage.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (6/28) Today's temps were steady at -0.821, down from -0.428 on 6/7, 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: (6/28) Today temps were rising some again today at +0.397 up from +0.344 on 6/15. It appears the trend is moving positive, the first time in over a year. 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 (6/28) The forecast depicts temps bottomed out at -0.75 in Nov 2017 and generally held through February, then started slowly rising since, up to -0.5 in mid-March and neutral in June. The forecast calls for a steady increase from here forward with temp pushing up to +0.45 degs on July 1 and rising in early Oct to +1.25 degs and to +1.5 degs in Nov then slowly fading from there but still above the +1.0 range into March 2019. 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 weak El Nino conditions by late Fall.
IRI Consensus Plume: The mid-June Plume depicts temps at +0.3 degs in late June and are to slowly rise from here forward, to +0.6 in August and +0.8 in October and +1.0 in January holding 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) (6/28): The daily index was falling today at -10.05. The 30 day average was falling today at -6.25 suggesting the Inactive Phase of the MJO was fading. The 90 day average was falling some at +0.18 suggesting a neutral ENSO pattern was building in the atmosphere. This is expected for a month more before falling into steady negative territory by mid August.
ESPI (like SOI but based on satellite confirmed precipitation. Positive and/or rising is good, negative and/or falling is bad): (6/28) Today the index was rising slightly at -0.25, the highest it's been in a year. Recent points of interest in reverse chronological order are: -1.04 on 6/5, -0.70 on 5/20, -0.60 on 5/17, -0.36 on 5/11 and -0.38 on 5/10, -0.35 on 4/26, -1.02 on 4/5, -1.13 on 3/27. The trend suggests La Nina is all but gone. This index is a forerunner of what happens in the ocean by 2-3 months in developing El Nino and La Nina situations.
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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Local Interest

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Surf Height-Swell Height Correlation Table


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