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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: July 6, 2005 6:26 AM
Buoys: Northern CA - Southern CA - Hawaii - Gulf of Alaska - Pacific Northwest
Buoy Forecast:
Northern CA - Southern CA - Hawaii - Gulf of Alaska - Pacific Northwest
Pacific Links:  Atmospheric Models - Buoy Data - Current Weather - Wave Models
Forecast Archives: Enter Here
A chronology of recent Mavericks Underground forecasts. Once you enter, just click on the HTML file forecast you want to review (e.g. 073199.html equals July 31, 1999). To view the maps that correspond to that forecast date, select the html file labeled 073199 maps.html
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Swell Potential Rating = 1.0 - California & 3.8 - 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 7/4 thru Sun 7/10
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 Utility swell
2 = Good probability for  1-2 days of Utility swell
1 = Good probability for 3 or more days of Impulse or Windswell
0 = Low probability for 1-2 days of Impulse or Windswell   

South Swells Tracking to Hawaii
Moderate South Pacific Storm Developing


On Tuesday (7/5) Northern CA surf was waist to chest high and gutless. South facing breaks up to waist high. Central California was up to waist high and blown by early afternoon. Southern CA breaks from Santa Barbara to just north of LA were near flat with best breaks to barely waist high. The LA area southward into Orange County was waist high with best spots to near chest high at the best breaks. Southward to San Diego waves were up to waist high. The North Shore of Oahu was thigh high. The South Shore was waist high with a few chest high sets. The East Shore was waist high.

Small surf was the norm for the US west coast with slightly better southern hemi energy providing something at least rideable along Hawaii's southern shores. Hawaii is to have some small but fun southern hemi swell by Wednesday with better energy following close behind. For the mainland weak windswell to continue north of Pt Conception. On the charts a moderate storm remains forecast to traverse the South Pacific through the week, but most energy is to move towards Central America. If it develops some south swell energy is possible for both Hawaii and California, but neither will be on the direct path, meaning just moderate swell at best. See details below...



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

North Pacific

At the jetstream level on Tuesday (7/5) the jetstream was showing some signs of life in that it was actually present, compared to being nonexistent days before. A think stretch of 110 kts winds outlined a very weak trough in the Gulf of Alaska with an even weaker ridge over the dateline (animation here). Over the next 72 hours the trough in the Gulf is to strengthen some, maxing out late Thursday (7/7) with winds at 120 kts well off the Washington coast then easing inland while a mild ridge continues over the dateline. Minimal support for some surface level circulation at best in the Gulf.

At the surface today thing remained bland. High pressure at 1024 mbs was centered north of Hawaii with a ridge pushing east to Oregon. It was producing weak gradient north winds along California's northern coast at 20-25 kts (and some short period windswell there) with another patch of weaker northeast winds at 15-20 kts moving into Hawaii. Weak nondescript low pressure was in the Gulf of Alaska and just off the Kuril Islands just as it was 2 days ago, neither of which had any potential to become something more (animation here). Over the next 72 hours no big change is forecast with the high continuing in the east at 1024 mbs. But the low in the Gulf is to a.cgiify some dropping to 996 mbs producing some 20-25 kt northwest winds aimed at California. And the Kuril low is to migrate east quickly, looking much like the previous low and producing a similar fetch aimed like it's predecessor. Maybe some windswell potential for North and Central California from these two, but not much. Decay to really take a toll on whatever is generated.

More model data here


California Offshore Forecast
Tuesday mornings local charts (7/5) indicate moderate high pressure at 1026 mbs centered 600 nmiles north of Hawaii ridging weakly into South Oregon and also stretching west across the dateline. A weak gradient remained off California, moving south centered near Pt Arena with the QuikSCAT satellite confirming north winds at 25 kts over a tiny area right along the coast there. The models continue to suggest a steady degradation of this pattern through Wednesday (7/6) as low pressure inland fades and the gradient losses fuel. Fading windswell expected. High pressure to hold north of Hawaii on Friday (7/8) at 1028 mbs but is to be held off from California as a series of 2 weak lows push through the Gulf of Alaska thanks to a building trough in the jetstream there. Northeast winds in the 25-30 kt range is forecast aimed a bit north of California on the first one (Thursday 7/7), but the second is to be further south, providing better windswell generation potential. Seems like stretch to believe either of these will materialize. A very weak high pressure pattern to take over by mid-next week.

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


South Pacific

On Tuesday (7/5) the jetstream charts indicated that a the strong ridge that was in control of the Central South Pacific was moderating and the southern branch was merging with the northern branch, providing a elongated corridor of favorable conditions extending from southeast of New Zealand slowly northeast to a point just off Central Chile with support from the strong winds in the northern branch adding energy to the trough on the very eastern edge of the US swell window. This was consistent with what the models have been projecting for several days now. A moderate ridge in the southern branch was under New Zealand reaching tot he Ross Ice shelf and a similar ridge was south of Chile, so the mid-Pacific was the only hope (animation here). Over the next 72 hours the trough in the jet is to hold on in some fashion through Friday (7/8), but not a clean as is present today. No strong ridges are to be present, but neither are any strong troughs, so the glass is somewhere between half full and half empty.

At the surface today a small high pressure center at 1032 mbs was just east of New Zealand. Two low pressure systems of interest were present, one off Chile and outside the US swell window and a better organized one southeast of New Zealand. This one is to be our best shot for swell production for the immediate future (animation here). Starting Tuesday (7/5) pressure dropped to 972 mbs while high pressure holds at 1032 mbs just east of New Zealand, setting a a gradient between the two aimed northeast. Winds were confirmed at 40 to near 50 kts over a broad area centered near 57S 162W aimed northwest generally up the 203 degree path to California and 30 degrees east of the 185 degree path to Hawaii. Seas forecast to build to 30 ft over a small area centered at 53S 160W on Tuesday PM. This pattern is to hold through Wednesday AM (7/6) with a tiny core of winds evolving to near 50 kts. At that time the fetch is to be centered at 52S 145W aimed 25 degrees east of the 195 degree path to California and 70 degree off any track to Hawaii and outside their swell window. Seas forecast at 33 ft centered at 50S 150W. The storm/gale is to continue tracking northeast while loosing definition, with winds down to 40 kts late Wednesday (7/6) positioned 1500 nmiles south of Tahiti. Seas dropping to 32 ft centered at 48S 143W. A broad but unorganized fetch of 35-40 kt west winds are to continue through Friday (7/8) south of Tahiti but aimed mostly at Peru. Seas forecast at 32 ft Thursday AM at 45S 140W dropping to 30 ft that evening at 42S 130W. This is to fade through Saturday (7/9) with perhaps a brief spurt of continued 30 ft seas then near 43S 130W. Current modeled data suggest decent utility class swell generation potential for California from this system with lesser energy moving north over a short window towards Hawaii from early in the storms life. Will monitor.

More model data here


Small New Zealand Storm - Hawaii
On Thursday evening (6/30) a 984 mb gale developed east of New Zealand and wound up through Friday AM (7/1) producing a fleeting and tiny 24 hour fetch of 45-50 kt winds aimed almost due north, right at Hawaii up the 192 degree great circle path. 18 hours of 28-29 ft seas were generated positioned near 47S 175W, 4300 nmiles southwest of Hawaii but good enough for some decent summertime utility class swell or better for Hawaii in the 13-14 sec range but likely hardly noticeable for California. Will track in the Hawaiian QuikCAST (look for arrival next Friday - 7/8).




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

North Pacific

Tuesdays upper level models (7/5) indicated that beyond 72 hours a weak trough forecast for the Gulf of Alaska is to continue with winds 110 kts pushing into and over southern Oregon by late Sunday (7/10). After that a return to very weak upper winds and a rather non-directional meandering pattern generally tracking west to east, but with no features of interest.

At the surface high pressure north of Hawaii is to retrograde west reaching the dateline on Sunday (7/10) and dragging whatever east windswell generation capacity was present for Hawaii towards the dateline. Beyond that the high is to really fade with no windswell generation capacity forecast for any North Pacific location by early next week.


South Pacific

Tuesdays upper level models (7/5) indicated that beyond 72 hours a pinched trough is to try and hold on off Chile moving out of even the Southern CA swell window while a new moderate trough opens just east of New Zealand on Monday (7/11). This trough looks to be short lived though, getting cut off within 24 hours as a stronger ridge starts building under New Zealand a week out.

At the surface a new low is forecast to move quickly through the Tasman Seas on Sunday (7/10) with 40-45 kt winds aimed up towards Hawaii producing a brief spurt of 30 ft seas that will get shadowed by Fiji. That fetch is to reorganize east of New Zealand on Tuesday (7/12) throwing another tiny fetch of 50 kt winds due north again towards Hawaii with 30 ft seas regenerating there while new storm activity tries to develop further south. Hawaii looks to have the upper hand long-term.


Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) Update
On Friday (6/24) the Southern Oscillation Index dipped into the negative range at -12, the first time in 9 days. Readings of -14 to -24 were reported daily until Thursday (6/30) when they returned to near neutral levels +2.5. They dipped again on Saturday (7/2) to -8 moving back up to the -3 range on July 4-5th. this suggest neutral conditions. Trades that had been a bit stronger than normal remain near slack/dead calm in the far Western Pacific extending east to nearly the dateline. Today's models suggested another spurt of enhanced trades should be occurring now through July 14th, though there's no sign of it. A potential active phase of the MJO is to follow starting 7/20, but that seems like a reach. At this time there were no clear signs of an impending active phase of the MJO or neither El Nino or La Nina. Marginally warmer than normal water temperatures continue across the equatorial Pacific though.

Details to follow...


Local Interest

4th Annual Jay Moriarity Memorial Paddleboard Race: On July 9 at New Brighton State Beach, Santa Cruz CA the fourth annual Jay Moriarity Memorial Paddleboard race will be held in honor of a great waterman and individual. Come out and see how fast you can go on Jay's turf. Long course, short course and youth races will be held. We will make boards available if you want to try it out. Profits benefit local Junior guards. Detailed information available here:

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

Stormsurf Weather Models Updated Again: Yes, we've been at it again this weekend getting another batch of weather models running. Global coverage is now provided for jetstream forecasts and surface pressure and winds. Zoomed in data is also available for such locations as the Mentawai Islands to Western Australia corridor, Tahiti, South America, Europe and Norwegian Sea. So now you can get local wind forecasts for these and more locations with one click. Take a look here:

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

Surf Height-Swell Height Correlation Table


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