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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: Wednesday, September 7, 2022 6:48 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
3.0 - California & 1.0 - 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 9/5 thru Sun 9/11

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 SPac Swell Arrives in CA
Small New Zealand Swell Pushing NE - SE Pac Gale Forecast

 

BUOY ROUNDUP
Wednesday, September 7, 2022 :

  • Buoy 238 (Barbers Pt)/Buoy 239 (Lani): Seas were 3.5 ft @ 9.1 secs with swell 1.7 ft @ 13.4 secs from 191 degrees. Water temp 81.3 degs (Barbers Pt), 81.0 (Pearl Harbor 233), 81.9 (Lani 239).
  • Buoy 106 (Waimea): Seas were 3.8 ft @ 8.3 secs with swell 3.0 ft @ 6.6 secs from 22 degrees. Water temp 81.1 degs.
  • Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 3.2 ft @ 9.1 secs with swell 2.4 ft @ 9.9 secs from 194 degrees. Wind southeast at 4-6 kts. Water temperature 73.9 degs, 72.7 (Topanga 103), 70.7 degs (Long Beach 215), 76.1 (Del Mar 153), 74.1 (Oceanside Offshore 045), 74.8 (Torrey Pines Outer 155). At Harvest Buoy (071) primary swell was 6.3 ft @ 8.8 secs from 290 degrees. At Santa Monica (028) swell was 1.5 ft @ 17.0 secs from 200 degrees. At Oceanside (045) swell was 1.6 ft @ 17.7 secs from 192 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma (191) swell was 2.0 ft @ 17.4 secs from 183 degrees. Water temp 72.7 degs.
  • Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 6.1 ft @ 9.1 secs with swell 5.2 ft @ 8.9 secs from 303 degrees and south swell 1.3 ft @ 17.8 secs from 188 degrees. Wind at buoy 46012 was northwest at 6-8 kts. Water temp 54.0 degs (Pt Reyes 029), 51.3 (Pt Reyes 46013), 53.8 (46026), NA (SF Bar 142), 61.7 (Pt Santa Cruz 254) and 55.8 (Monterey Bay 46042).

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 Tuesday (9/6) North and Central CA had set waves at chest high on the sets coming from the north and fairly clean but with some warble intermixed and soft. Protected breaks were waist to maybe chest high and clean and fairly lined up but soft. At Santa Cruz surf was waist to maybe chest high on the sets and clean and soft and wonky from tide. In Southern California/Ventura waves were waist high and lined up with decent form and clean with no wind early. Central Orange County had sets at chest high plus and lined up and clean with decent form coming from the south. South Orange County's best summertime breaks had sets at 1-2 ft overhead and lined up with good form and clean. North San Diego had sets at waist high and weak and soft and clean. Hawaii's North Shore was flat and clean. The South Shore had sets at waist to rarely chest high and lined up and clean but fairly soft. The East Shore was thigh thigh and chopped from moderate east-northeast trades.

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

Meteorological Overview
On Tuesday (9/6) Hawaii was getting minimal background swell. California was starting to get swell from a modest gale that developed in the deep Central South Pacific Sat-Mon (8/29) tracking northeast with seas in the 30-33 ft range. And a secondary gale developed from it in the upper Southeast Pacific on Thurs-Fri (9/2) producing a tiny area of 30 ft seas aimed north. Small swell from these systems are propagating north. And a gale developed south of New Zealand Sat-Mon (9/5) producing with 28-32 ft seas aimed northeast. Swell is likely to result for HI and CA. And yet another gale is to develop in the Central South Pacific moving to the Southeast Pacific Thurs-Fri (9/9) with up to 38 ft seas aimed well northeast. Summer is not done with us yet.

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
Surface Analysis
On Tuesday (9/6) no swell was in the water relative to Hawaii or the US West Coast.

Over the next 72 hours no swell producing fetch of interest is forecast.

 

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

 

Tropical Update (updated Wed afternoon 9/7)
On Tues AM (9/6) Hurricane Kay was 300 nmiles south of Cabo San Lucas Mexico tracking northwest with winds 80 kts at 17N 109W and just east of the SCal swell window with seas 30 ft. Kay held strength while tracking north-northwest in the evening to 19.5N 111.5W and barely in the Pt Dume swell window at 153 degrees with winds 80 kts (88 mph) and seas 32 ft. Kay continued tracking north-northwest if not north building to 90 kts on Wed AM (9/7) at 21N 113W on the 157 degree track to Pt Dume and barely in the Dana Point swell window at 159 degrees. Kay is to continue north-northwest while slowly fading into Thurs PM (9/8) moving over Isla de Cedros (half way up Baja) with winds down to 65 kts and effectively cut off by islands there relative to producing swell for Southern CA. Kay is to fade on Fri (9/9) to tropical storm status while turning northwest positioned 120 nmiles southwest of Ensenada CA with winds 45 kts and fading from there while turning west. Current analysis suggests low odds of meaningful swell resulting for Southern CA given Kays more eastward track though windswell seems possible after Kay tracks north of Central Baja.

Southern CA: Swell arrival at exposed breaks roughly mid-day on Thurs (9/8) building to 1.8 ft @ 14 secs later (2.5 ft). Swell fading on Fri (9/9) at 1.5 ft @ 13-14 secs early (2.0 ft). Possible windswell from the remnants of Kay to arrive on Sat (9/10) at 7.0 ft @ 8 secs early (5.0 ft). Swell Direction: 153-159 degrees with windswell later from 160 degrees

 

California Nearshore Forecast

  • Wed AM (9/7) northwest winds are forecast at 15-20 kts for Cape Mendocino and 5 kts or less from Bodega Bay and points south of there. In the afternoon winds to build to near 30 kts on the CA-OR border but otherwise no real change is forecast. Small windswell production is possible.
  • Thurs AM (9/8) the gradient starts building again with northwest winds 30-35 kts limited to the CA-OR border and 20-25 kts down to Pt Arena and northwest 5-10 kts south of there. In the afternoon more of the same is forecast but with northwest winds building to 15 kts south of Pt Arena to Pt Conception. Windswell building.
  • Fri AM (9/9) northwest winds to be 20-30 kts just off the coast of Cape Mendocino and 20 kts off the Golden gate with northwest winds 10 ks from there to Pt Conception. No change in the afternoon but with winds 10-15 kts from the Golden Gate southward. Northeast winds 10 kts for Southern CA and up to 20 kts for San Diego as the remnants of Hurricane Kay starting to influence the area. Rain developing for San Diego. Windswell fading some.
  • Sat AM (9/10) northwest winds to be 5-10 kts for North and Central CA. Northeast winds 20 kts for portions of Southern CA. Rain for LA County southward early. A light wind pattern is forecast for all of North, Central and Southern CA later. Rain thinning at sunset for Southern CA. But all of this is dependent upon the track of Hurricane Kay.
  • Sun AM (9/11) a light pressure and wind pattern is to in control. Kay is to be fading just off Southern CA and nearly gone by nightfall. No windswell forecast. No rain forecast.
  • Mon AM (9/12) a light northwest flow at 10 kts is forecast for North CA early. Northwest winds 15 kts for Central CA. Southern CA to return to it's normal summer mode. No change in the afternoon. No windswell forecast.
  • Tues AM (9/13) northwest winds to be 10-15 kts for North and Central CA early. No windswell production forecast.

Total snow accumulation for the next 10 days respectively for Squaw Valley, Sugar Bowl, Kirkwood and Mammoth are projected at 0, 0, 0, and 0 inches.

Freezing level for the Tioga Pass Road is 14,000+ ft today and unchanged for the foreseeable future. A summertime pattern remains in effect. But....If the tropical systems moves into Southern CA as forecast the freezing level might fall to 12,000 ft on 9/10 and holding through 9/15.

- - -

Tioga Pass/Pacific Crest Trail intersection forecast: Temps - Freeze Level
More locations 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).

 

South Pacific

Overview
Jetstream
On Tuesday (9/6) the influential southern branch of the jetstream was supporting a fading trough over the Central South Pacific with no real wind energy feeding it offering little support for gale development. A ridge was building south under New Zealand and ridge was over the far Southeast Pacific suppressing gale development. Over the next 72 hours starting Thurs (9/8) a pocket of winds energy at 120 kts and another trough is to start building over the Central South Pacific just barely clear of the northern edge of the Ross Ice Shelf. Beyond 72 hours starting late Fri (9/9) that trough is to build while being fed by 130 kts winds lifting northeast over the Central and Southeast Pacific building to 150 kts late Sat (9/10) pushing east and then out of the SCal swell window late Sun (/11) but offering good support for gale development while in the window. A possible late season surge in southern hemi activity to result. And even on Tues (9/13) there's some suggestions of another trough trying to develop under New Zealand being fed by 140 kts winds. Something to monitor.


Surface Analysis
Swell
from a gale previously over the Central South Pacific was starting to hit California (see Another Central South Pacific Swell below). And that swell is to be reinforced by swell overlapping it later from a gale previously in the Southeast Pacific (see Southeast Pacific Gale below). And possible tropical swell from Hurricane Kay is to be in the mix too for Southern CA (see Tropical Update above). And swell from a system under New Zealand is staring to track northeast as well (see New Zealand Gale below)

Over the next 72 hours a new gale is forecast developing southwest of New Zealand just off the Ross Ice Shelf on Thurs AM (9/8) producing southwest winds at 40+ kts over a solid area aimed northeast with seas building from 29 ft at 59S 168W aimed northeast. In the evening southwest winds to be lifting northeast fast at 40-45 kts with seas 30 ft at 58.25S 155W aimed northeast. The gale is to build Fri AM (9/9) with a broad area of 45-50 kt southwest winds over the Southeast Pacific with seas to 35 ft at 58.25S 129.75W aimed northeast. In the evening the gale is to be moving over the far Southeast Pacific and almost out of the Southern CA swell window with 45-55 kt southwest winds and seas 40 ft at 57S 118W aimed northeast. Fetch is to be east of the SCal swell window on Sat AM (9/10) with seas fading from 30 ft at 53S 120W aimed northeast. The gale is to be east of the Scal swell window beyond. Something to monitor.

 

Another Central South Pacific Gale
On Sun (8/28) a gale developed over the deep South Central Pacific with 40 kts southwest winds on the north edge of the Ross Ice Shelf getting traction on ice free waters and producing 28 ft seas at 60S 160.75W aimed east-northeast. In the evening 40 kt southwest winds lifted northeast with seas building in coverage at 29 ft at 56.5S 153W aimed northeast. On Mon AM (8/29) 40-45 kt southwest winds continued tracking east-northeast with seas building to 31 ft at 51.25S 137.5W aimed northeast. In the evening southwest winds were 40+ kts on the eastern edge of the CA swell window with 33 ft seas at 50.75S 127W aimed northeast and poised to move out of the CA swell window while fading after that. No additional fetch occurred beyond.

Oahu: No meaningful swell is expected for the Hawaiian Islands.

Southern CA: Swell building on Tues (9/6) to 2.2 ft @ 16-17 secs later (3.5 ft). Swell steady on Wed (9/7) at 2.4 ft @ 15-16 secs early (3.5 ft). Swell fading on Thurs (9/8) from 2.2 ft @ 14-15 secs early (3.0 ft) with new south swell starting to take over (see below). Swell Direction: 200 degrees

North CA: Swell building on Tues (9/6) to 2.1 ft @ 17-18 secs midday (3.5 ft). Swell steady on Wed (9/7) at 2.4 ft @ 15-16 secs early (3.5-4.0 ft). Swell fading on Thurs (9/8) from 2.4 ft @ 14-15 secs early (3.5 ft) with new south swell starting to take over (see below). Swell Direction: 195 degrees

 

Southeast Pacific Gale
Another small gale developed in the upper reaches of the Central South Pacific Wed PM (8/31) producing 35-40 kt south winds aimed well north but over a small area with seas building to 26 ft at 48S 138.5W aimed north. On Thurs AM (9/1) 45 kts south winds built slightly in coverage while lifting northeast with seas 26-28 ft over a slightly broader area at 48S 130W aimed northeast. Fetch was fading in the evening from 35 kts while still lifting northeast with seas 28 ft at 44S 125W aimed north. Fetch was fading Fri AM (9/2) from 35 kts from the south with seas fading from 25 ft at 39S 122W aimed north.

Southern CA: Swell arriving on Thurs (9/8) building to 1.3 ft @ 17-18 secs later (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell building on Fri (9/9) to 1.8 ft @ 15-16 secs (2.5-3.0 ft) mid-day. Swell fading Sat (9/10) from 1.9 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell fading Sun (9/11) from 1.8 ft @ 13-14 secs early (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 192 degrees

North CA: Swell arrival on Fri (9/9) building to 1.4 ft @ 16 secs later (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell continues on Sat (9/10) at 2.1 ft at 14-15 secs (3.0 ft). Swell fading Sun (9/11) from 2.0 ft @ 13-14 secs early (2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 188 degrees

 

New Zealand Gale
And a broad gale started developing south of New Zealand on Sat PM (9/3) producing 900 nmiles of southwest winds at 35-40 kts aimed north targeting primarily the Southern tip of New Zealand with seas building from 31 ft at 50.25S 165.25E and shadowed by New Zealand relative to Hawaii and CA. On Sun AM (9/4) a broad fetch of 40-45 kts south winds were free and clear of New Zealand with 29 ft seas at 48.25S 177.5E aimed northeast. In the evening a moderate fetch of south to southwest winds at 35-40 kt were easing east with seas 32 ft at 56S 174E aimed northeast. On Mon AM (9/5) fetch was fading from 30 kts from the southwest with seas 29 ft at 52.25S 177.75W aimed northeast. Fetch was gone after that. Modest swell is tracking northeast towards Hawaii and the US West Coast.

Hawaii: Rough data suggests swell arrival on Sat (9/10) building to 0.9 ft @ 18 secs late (1.5 ft). Swell building on Sun (9/11) to 1.6 ft @ 16 secs later (2.5 ft). Swell fading on Mon (9/12) from 1.9 ft @ 15 secs early (3.0 ft). Swell continues on Tues (9/13) from 2.0 ft @ 15 secs early (3.0 ft). Dribbles on Wed (9/14) fading from 1.6 ft @ 13-14 secs (2.0 ft). Swell Direction: 206-202 degrees

Southern CA: Expect swell arrival on Tues (9/13) building to 1.2 ft @ 17-18 secs later (2.0 ft). Swell building on Wed (9/14) to 1.7 ft @ 16-17 secs later (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell fading some on Thurs (9/15) from 1.7 ft @ 15-16 secs early (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell fading on Fri (9/16) from 1.6 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 213 degrees

North CA: Expect swell arrival on Tues (9/13) building to 1.3 ft @ 17-18 secs later (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell building on Wed (9/14) to 1.9 ft @ 16-17 secs midday (3.0 ft). Swell fading some on Thurs (9/15) from 2.0 ft @ 15-16 secs early (3.0 ft). Swell fading on Fri (9/16) from 1.7 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.5 ft). Swell Direction: 213 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 fetch of interest is forecast.

 

South Pacific

Beyond 72 hours perhaps a small gale is to develop under New Zealand on Tues AM (9/13) producing 28-30 ft seas aimed northeast.

 

MJO/ENSO Forecast

 

Upwelling Phase Underway
Models Suggesting this to be the Final La Nina Surge
Cool subsurface water volume peaked under the equatorial Pacific on 10/15/21, faded in May and June 2022, but is stating to rebuild in late July. A Kelvin Wave traversed the equatorial Pacific May-June, but was discharged by late July. The SOI appears to be past its peak. La Nina conditions are projected reinforcing in Nino3.4 in Fall then fading by Winter turning neutral. Overall cool water volume over the entire equatorial Pacific is to be fading steadily from here forward. The outlook is turning more optimistic.

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 through the Winter of 2022 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 2022 = 4.0 (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 and a full double dip pattern took hold through the Winter of 21/22. But a quick fade is forecast as we move into late December 2022 with the CFS predicting a return to a neutral wind anomaly pattern 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 2022. But by later in Jan or early Feb 2023 a return to a more normal pattern might take hold. As a result a significantly reduced number of storm days and storm intensity is expected Oct 22-Jan 23, resulting in a below normal level of swells, with swell being below normal duration and period. But by Feb 2023, the number of storm days, intensity and duration of those storms should start improving as La Nina fades out. The net result is we're currently thinking a near normal number of swells with normal size and duration is to result, but all focused sometime after Jan 2023. The swell pattern will be below normal before Jan and above normal after Jan 23 with the average of the two being 'normal'. Of course this is all highly speculative at this early date.

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 (9/5) 5 day average winds were strong from the east over the Eastern equatorial Pacific and strong east over the Central Pacific and strong east over the KWGA. Anomalies were neutral over the East equatorial Pacific and modest east over the Central Pacific and moderate to strong 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): (9/6) East anomalies were far weaker today at moderate strength still filling the KWGA. The 7 day forecast calls for modest east anomalies holding over KWGA focused at 170E then rebuilding to strong status at 150E on the last day of the model run (9/13).

Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East

MJO/WWB/Wind Projections:  
OLR Models: (9/5) A neutral MJO signal was indicated today over the KWGA. The statistical model indicates a neutral MJO holding over the KWGA for the next 15 days. The dynamic model suggests the same thing. The models are in sync.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS): (9/6) The statistical model depicts the Active signal was weak over Maritime Continent and is to slowly plod east reaching the East Pacific 15 days out at very weak status. The dynamic model suggest the Active Phase meandering over the Maritime Continent and very weak over the next 15 days.
40 day Upper Level Model (assumed to be a statistical mode and 1 week ahead of what is occurring at the surface): (9/6) A weak Active MJO signal (wet air) was over the Maritime Continent with a moderate Inactive MJO (dry air) over the Pacific Ocean today. The forecast depicts the Inactive Signal tracking east while the Active Phase moves east over the KWGA on 9/16 and very weak traversing the equatorial Pacific and dissipating over the East Pacific on 10/6. An Inactive Phase (dry air) is to start building over the over KWGA on 10/6 pushing east and weakening through the end of the model run on 10/16.
4 Week CFS Model (850 mb wind): (9/5) The Active Phase of the MJO was trying to build over the KWGA today but with moderate east anomalies filling the KWGA. Looking forward the Active Phase of the MJO is to try and reaching east into the KWGA on 9/10 but fading before making it there. East anomalies at moderate status are to holding over the KWGA for the foreseeable future through the end of the model run on 10/3.
3 Month CFS Model (850 mb wind):
(9/6) - using the 5th ensemble member - the mean of the 4 individual members which are all from the 00Z run - 1 run per day):
Today a pulse of the Inactive Phase is just past it's peak over the KWGA and forecast to hang on till 9/22. A weak pulse of the Active Phase trying to make headway into the KWGA 9/8-9/20 then fading with weak west anomalies building over the West KWGA peaking on 9/20. A weak pulse of the Inactive Phase is to follow 9/22-10/8 with east anomalies again filling the KWGA. Then on 10/8 a coherent Active Phase of the MJO is to start pushing through the KWGA in earnest and in control through the end of the model run on 12/4 centered over the dateline if not east of there. West anomalies are to move from the Maritime Continent 10/6 bleeding east to about the dateline on 10/15 then holding if not fully moving east starting 11/9 and filling the KWGA at moderate plus status and easing east from there. This would be a huge change if it develops as forecast. The low pass filter indicates a high pressure bias with 2 contour lines centered at 180W with its western perimeter at 155E today. The second contour is to build into October then collapse on 11/20 with the western edge of the high pressure bias retrograding west to 145E at 10/15 then possibly starting to east east from there to 150E at the end of the model run. A broad double contour low pressure bias is established centered over the West Maritime Continent at 90E with it's leading edge at 130E today but is forecast retrograding to 125E on 10/10 then starting to ease east slightly at the end of the model run. Of note, east anomalies which are and have been centered at 180W and are to continue to have some solid influence over the KWGA into early Oct, then dissipate completely thereafter with west anomalies taking over the KWGA beyond.

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

Subsurface Waters Temps
TAO Array: (9/6) Today in the far West Pacific the 29 degree isotherm was gone, previously at 171E. The 28 deg isotherm line was backtracking to 167E from 180E. The 26 degree isotherm had backtracked to 153W and is table there now. The 24 deg isotherm was backtracking from Ecuador to 133W. Anomaly wise, warm anomalies +2 deg C were in a pocket in the far West Pacific down 150m with it's leading edge stuck at 150W, A pocket of cool anomalies at -3 degs C were centered at 133W and filling the area from 145W and points east of there. The remnants of a previous Kevin Wave were at +1 degs in the East Pacific off Ecuador starting at 115W. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 8/31 indicates the same broad area of warm anomalies in the west pushing east to 150W and far warmer. A cool pocket was filling the area east of 155W and reaching the surface. The GODAS animation appears to be 1 week behind the TAO data but also is more detailed and accurately modeled.
Sea Level Anomalies: (8/31) Sea heights were stabilizing over the Equatorial Pacific. A broad pocket of positive anomalies were over the equator in the far West Pacific reaching east to only 165E. A pocket of negative anomalies were fading in intensity from 105W to 155W with a core down from -15 cms to -10 cms at 130W. Per the Upper Ocean Heat Anomaly Histogram cool anomalies were positioned in the Central Equatorial Pacific between 155W to 100W and easing east slightly. A cool cycle is underway but easing east. Hopefully it is only a single pulse similar to the last one in March and not a triple pulse like last year at this time. If a second pulse develops, La Nina will last through the Winter and the models will all be wrong.

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: (9/5) The latest images depict a broad generic pool of cool water extending west from Chile and Peru to the dateline and filling well south of the equator. The coolest water was on the equator between 105W-140W. An area of warm water was present on the equator from Ecuador west to 140W but mostly just north of the equator starting at 2N. A weak area of warm water was present north of the equator (15 deg N) extending off mainland Mexico to 145W. Overall this indicates the late stages of La Nina.
Hi-res 7 day Trend (9/5): A string of small cool pockets were on the equator between Ecuador to 130W. Cooling has the edge today.
Hi-res Overview: (9/5) Persistent cool waters cover a large area from Ecuador to 160E on and south of the equator from South America down at 20S with the coolest waters between 110W to 180W on the equator. Warmer than normal waters were on the equator in the east aligned in a thin stream from Ecuador to 110W starting on the equator and points north of there. La Nina remains in control over the East Equatorial Pacific and the density and intensity of the cooling appears to be building some on the equator with warm water from a previous Kelvin Wave breaking up over the East equatorial Pacific.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (9/6) (These temps are biased high by about 0.2 degs compared to official sources). Today's temps were falling some at -1.276 degs and have been in the -1.0 range since 7/29. Temp were down on 7/20 to -1.6 degs. Previously temps were stable near -1.4 degrees 6/12 through 7/27. Peaks in that time frame were -1.189 (7/7), -1.534 (7/5). Previously temps were at -1.822 on 6/9 after being up to -1.506 (5/21) and that after hovering around -2.0 degs since 4/21/22. Prior to that temps were fading 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 1/3/22 and -1.954 on 12/18/21, the lowest this year so far. Previously temps dropped on 11/24/21 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. That 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:
(9/6) (These temps are biased high by about 0.2 degs). Today's temps are stable at -1.015 and have been in the -1.0 range since 8/16. Temps have been falling since 7/15 reaching La Nina threshold on 7/27 after being more or less steady the previous 3 weeks peaking at -0.25 on 7/14 and -0.275 on 7/5. Previously temps had been on an upward trend since 5/15/22 rising to -0.414 degs (6/19) and -0.493 on 6/9, the first reading above La Nina threshold values since Sept 2021. Temps were down to -0.929 (5/2/22) and that after rising to a peak at -0.704 on 3/27 and had been on a gentle rising trend since falling to -1.012 on 3/8. Previously temps were rising slightly to -0.505 on 2/2 and that after reaching a peak low of -1.096 on 1/3/22 beating the previous low of -1.080 on 11/2/21, the lowest in a year. Prior to that temps had been in a freefall starting from the -0.175 range in early Sept/21. Before that temps peaked up at 7/1/21 +0.332, the highest in a year. Temps previously had been steady near -0.222 since early March 2021. 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 to -1.1 degs in May before starting an upward climb peaking in mid-June at -0.65 degs and mid July at -0.55 degs. A steady decline set in after that falling to -1.05 degs in Aug.
Forecast (9/6) - Temps are to be falling from about -1.0 degs in Sept to -1.45 degs in Nov then start a quick rise beyond and reaching above the La Nina threshold in Feb 2023 and up to +0.50 degs in May and heading up from there presumably. This model suggests we are going to steadily transition towards ENSO neutral in Dec. The PDF Corrected forecast suggests temps bottomed out at -1.00 in mid Aug and are to hold, falling slightly to -1.1 degs in Nov then starting a steady upward climb rising above La Nina threshold in Feb and rising from there forward to +0.30 degs in April/May. According to this version of the model we will hold in weak La Nina conditions through Fall before starting a trend towards neutrality in Dec. That said - the surface temp coverage model suggests a temps holding steady through Oct. then a steady erosion of the coldest waters south of Nino3.4 (down at 20S) to begin. By Dec a clear discharge of La Nina is to be nearly complete with near neutral temps prevailing over the entire equatorial Pacific and turning fully neutral in Jan and beyond into Feb. The greater equatorial Pacific cool signature looks to hold through mid-Oct then quickly dissolving beyond.
IRI Consensus Plume: The August 19, 2022 Plume depicts temps are -0.809 degs today. Temps to fall more to -0.862 in Oct then are to warm to the La Nina threshold at -0.589 in Dec and -0.393 in Jan rising to +0.182 in April. This model suggests a continuation of minimal La Nina temps through early Dec then transitioning to ENSO neutral. This model is in line with the CFS model.
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 - all but the Daily Index was a lagging indicator):
Today (9/6) the Daily Index was rising to +18.25. Previous peaks were at +33.57 (5/24), +40.77 (5/10), +31.44 (4/27), +31.80 (4/6), +27.33 (1/31) and +46.71 (12/26). The trend has been solidly positive but starting in July weakness is starting to take hold. Previous other notable peaks were +30.98 (11/26), +36.90 (9/28), +27.75 ( 9/13) and +37.86 (7/15).
The 30 day average was rising at +8.05 after falling to +6.89 on 7/29. It peaked at +20.34 (5/12) the highest in a year and beating last years high of +19.51 (1/14).
The 90 day average was steady at +11.08 previously down at +12.92 on 8/11 and that after peaking at +18.40 (7/2) beating it's previous peak of +16.86 (5/31), the highest in a year. It previously peaked at +9.80 (9/21) after falling to it's lowest point in a year at +1.06 (6/9). The 90 day average peaked at +15.75 (2/23/21 - 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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