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Pacific Storm and Surf Forecast
Updated: Sunday, October 13, 2019 12:28 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
1.5 - California & 3.0 - 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 10/7 thru Sun 10/13

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   

Gulf Swell Forecast
Series of Small Southern Hemi Swells Tracking Northeast

On Sunday, October 13, 2019 :

  • Buoy 233 (Pearl Harbor Entrance)/Buoy 239 (Lanai) Seas were 3.2 ft @ 12.5 secs with swell 1.6 ft @ 12.8 secs from 197 degrees.
  • Buoy 106 (Waimea): Seas were 2.4 ft @ 11.8 secs with swell 1.4 ft @ 12.2 secs from 315 degrees.
  • Buoy 46025 (Catalina RDG): Seas were 1.6 ft @ 11.4 secs with swell 1.1 ft @ 11.4 secs from 161 degrees. Wind at the buoy was west at 2-4 kts. Water temperature 66.2 degs. At Harvest Buoy (071) primary swell was 2.2 ft @ 8.6 secs from 293 degrees. At Santa Monica (028) swell was 0.8 ft @ 11.7 secs from 206 degrees. At Oceanside (045) swell was 1.1 ft @ 12.2 secs from 183 degrees. Southward at Pt Loma (191) swell was 1.3 ft @ 11.6 secs from 184 degrees.
  • Buoy 46012 (Half Moon Bay)/029 (Pt Reyes): Seas were 2.4 ft @ 12.5 secs with swell 1.2 ft @ 12.0 secs from 180 degrees. Wind at the buoy (013) was north at 2 kts. Water temp 52.3 degs (013) and 57.6 degs (042).

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 Saturday (10/12) in North and Central CA local north windswell was producing waves at up to waist high and soft and crumbled but clean with a bit of warbled and no wind early. Protected breaks were flat and clean. At Santa Cruz surf was flat and clean with some rare thigh high sets. In Southern California/Ventura local windswell was producing set waves to thigh high occasionally and clean and weak. In North Orange Co waves were thigh to maybe waist high on the rare sets and soft and clean. South Orange Country's best summertime breaks had waves at waist to maybe chest high on the sets and clean and lined up but inconsistent. North San Diego had surf at maybe waist high on the sets and clean and soft. Hawaii's North Shore was flat and clean. The South Shore was getting some waist to maybe chest high waves and clean and lined up when it came. The East Shore was getting east windswell with waves waist high or so and chopped early from moderate east trades.

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

Meteorological Overview
On Saturday (10/12) in California and Hawaii no swell of interest was hitting either location. In the South Pacific a small gale developed under New Zealand lifting northeast Sat-Sun (10/6) with up to 37 ft seas over a small area. Small swell is radiating northeast. And another gale developed in the Central South Pacific on Fri-Sat (10/12) with up to 42 ft seas aimed east-northeast. Up north a gale is forecast in the Northwestern Gulf falling southeast Mon-Tues (10/15) with up to 30 ft seas over a small area followed on Wed (10/16) by a larger one with 28-30 ft seas falling southeast. So possibly some surf is to finally result.

See all the details below...


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

North Pacific

On Saturday (10/12) the jetstream was somewhat consolidated ridging north over the Northwest Pacific with winds 190 kts over the Kuril Islands then rapidly weakening while tracking east over the Aleutians falling hard south into a pinched trough on the dateline then ridging hard north again and pushing east through the Northern Gulf. There was no clear support for gale development anywhere over the North Pacific. Over the next 72 hours winds to hold at 160 kts over the Kurils with a more consolidated stream tracking over the Aleutians then falling into a developing trough on Mon (10/14) in the Northern Gulf and rapidly tracking east offering some support for gale development there. Beyond 72 hours a more normal looking jetstream flow is to set up on Tues (10/15) with up to 160 kt winds arching over the North Pacific impacting the Central Aleutians then falling into a building trough in the Northern Gulf and holding decently into Wed-Thurs (10/17) offering good support for gale development. And even on Fri-Sat (10/19) the jet is to be consolidated running east on the 45N latitude line with a trough developing on the dateline being fed by 110 kt winds offering some support for gale development. And the jet is to be pushing down the US West Coast offering some hope for weather there. So a more interesting pattern is to start setting up.  

Surface Analysis
On Saturday (10/12) no swell of interest was hitting Hawaii or California.

Over the next 72 hours starting Mon AM (12/14) a primer gale is to start building in the Northern Gulf producing a small area of 45 kt northwest winds and seas building from 28 ft at 49.5N 157W aimed southeast. The gale is to fall southeast in the evening and fade some with winds 35-40 kt northwest winds and seas 30 ft at 48N 150W targeting the US West Coast. The gale is to fade on Tues AM (10/15) with 35 kt northwest winds and seas fading from 26-28 ft at 48N 142W targeting the US West Coast. This system is to start getting absorbed by a much larger gale building behind it.

The remnants of what was Super Typhoon Hagibis are to be redeveloping while turning extratropical on Sun AM (10/13) off North Japan with winds 45 kts tracking northeast and seas fading from 32 ft over a small area at 40N 153E.  In the evening ET Hagibis is to be racing northeast now off Southern Kamchatka with winds 35 kts from the northwest aimed well at Hawaii with seas fading from 27 ft at 43N 158E aimed east-northeast. On Mon AM (10/14) Hagibis is to tap jetstream energy and rapidly build with 55 kt northwest winds but almost entirely encased in the Central Bering Sea over the dateline. Seas 26 ft at 51N 177E aimed northeast and targeting only the Aleutians. In the evening Hagibis is to remain in the Eastern Bering Sea with winds 60 kts offering nothing. On Tues AM (10/15) this system is to be starting to build into the Northern Gulf producing a large area of west winds at 35+ kts growing in coverage and seas building from 28 ft over a small area just extending southeast from the Eastern Aleutians at 51N 168W aimed southeast. In the evening a broad area of 40 kt northwest winds is to be nearly filling the Gulf with 27 ft seas over a solid area aimed southeast at 50N 152W. On Wed AM (10/16) fetch is to hold at 35-40 kt northeast winds and seas 31 ft at 50.5N 145W aimed southeast. The gale is to be fading in the evening with northwest winds 35 kts just off British Columbia with 29 ft seas at 48.5N 137.5W aimed east-southeast. On Thurs AM (10/17) this system is to be moving inland with seas fading from 25 ft off Washington at 47N 130W. Certainly something to monitor.  


Windswell Outlook
On Saturday (10/12) no fetch greater than 10 kts was occurring near California offering no windswell production potential. but north winds at 20 kts were over a solid area well off the Pacific Northwest possibly generating windswell radiating south. East fetch is to hold at 15 kts up to 900 nmiles east of Hawaii  resulting in more east windswell. On Sunday (10/13) light winds area forecast for California but with northwest winds building to 15-20 kts over Cape Mendocino in the afternoon. The fetch off the Pacific Northwest is to be falling southeast with north winds 20 kts early and fading while impacting the northern coast later. For Hawaii east fetch is to be fading in density up to 700 nmiles east of the Islands still producing east windswell. On Monday (10/14) north winds are forecast at 20 kts over a tiny area near Cape Mendocino early and fading quickly as low pressure builds in the Gulf resulting in no meaningful windswell for the CA coast. For Hawaii east fetch is to be collapsing from 15 kts early limited to a small area 300 nmiles east of the Islands likely resulting in no real windswell for the Islands. On Tuesday (10/15) no fetch or windswell production potential is forecast relative to California or Hawaii as strong low pressure takes over the Gulf of Alaska.


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


Tropical Update
The remnants of what was Super Typhoon Hagibis are tracking north after hitting Tokyo Japan on Sat AM (10/12). See Short term forecast above for details.

California Nearshore Forecast
On Saturday (10/12) a light north flow is forecast for all of CA all day. No on Sun (10/13) but with north winds 15-20 kts for Cape Mendocino later. On Monday (10/14)  north winds to be 20 kts for Cape Mendocino early and fading fast mid-day with light winds south of there to Pt Conception. Tuesday (10/15) light winds are forecast for all of CA.  Wednesday (10/16) south winds are forecast over Cape Mendocino 20 kts early as a front pushes through that area associated with low pressure in the Gulf of Alaska. Otherwise light winds are forecast except 15-20 kts from the north over Pt Conception. Rain for North CA down to Bodega Bay but no further south. Thurs (10/17) north winds are to be building from 20 kts over Pt Conception pushing 25 kts from Pt Arena southward in the afternoon. Friday (10/18) north winds to be 20-25 kts from Pt Reyes southward all day but light for Cape Mendocino. Rain building south to Pt Arena. Saturday (10/19) north winds are forecast at 20-25 kts for Pt Arena southward all day.

Snow Models: (Scroll down for resort specific forecasts).


South Pacific

Surface Analysis
Swell from a gale previously under New Zealand is tracking northeast (See Another Small New Zealand Gale below) and mixed with small swell from another gale (see Cutoff Tahitian Gale below).  

Over the next 72 hours a gale had developed and was tracking east over the South Central Pacific (see South Central Pacific Gale below).  


Another Small New Zealand Gale
On Saturday AM (10/5) a tiny storm developed under New Zealand with 45-50 kt west winds and seas building to 36 ft over a small area at 58S 164.5E from 213 degrees for California and unshadowed by Tahiti. Southwest winds lifted northeast in the evening at 40 kts with seas 33 ft at 54S 178.5E due south of New Zealand. On Sun AM (10/6) southwest winds were fading from 35-40 kts moving southeast of New Zealand with seas 28 ft at 56S 169.5W aimed well northeast. In the evening fetch was gone with seas fading from 25 ft at 55S 160W aimed east. Small swell is possible for Hawaii and California.

Hawaii: Expect swell arrival on Sat (10/12) building to 1.3 ft @ 18 secs later (2.0-2.5 ft). Swell building through the day Sun (10/13) 1.5 ft @ 16-17 secs (2.5 ft). Swell fading on Mon (10/14) from 1.5 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.0 ft). Swell Direction: 195 degrees

Southern California: Expect swell arrival on Mon PM (10/14) with period 19 secs and size tiny.  Swell building through the day Tues (10/15) to 1.5 ft @ 17 secs (2.5 ft) later. Swell peaking on Wed (10/16) at 1.8 ft @ 16 secs (3.0 ft) mid-day. Swell fading on Thurs (10/17) from 2.0 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell Direction: 210-213 degrees

North California: Expect swell arrival on Mon PM (10/14) with period 19 secs and size tiny.  Swell building through the day Tues (10/15) to 1.5 ft @ 17 secs (2.5 ft) later. Swell peaking on Wed (10/16) at 2.0 ft @ 16 secs (3.0 ft) mid-day. Swell fading on Thurs (10/17) from 2.0 ft @ 14-15 secs (2.5-3.0 ft). Swell Direction: 210-213 degrees

Cutoff Tahitian Gale
A tiny cutoff low formed south of Tahiti on Mon (10/7) building in the evening while producing a small sized area of 28 ft seas aimed north at 48S 149W. Fetch and seas were fading Tues AM (10/8) from 26 ft at 45S 147.5W aimed north. Whatever swell is generated with be buried in the New Zealand Swell above.


South Central Pacific Gale
A gale developed just north of the Ross Ice Shelf on Fri AM (10/11) producing 45 kt west winds and seas building to 29 ft at 60.5S 17W aimed east. In the evening fetch built to 45-50 kts over a solid area streaming north off the Ross Ice Shelf with seas building to 40 ft at 59.5S 162W aimed northeast. On Sat AM (10/12) southwest winds were 45 kts aimed northeast with seas building to 42 ft over a moderate sized area at 58.5S 149W aimed northeast. Fetch to fade at 30-35 kts in the evening aimed northeast with 35 ft seas fading at 58S 141.5W aimed northeast. On Sun AM (10/13) southwest fetch to fade to 30-35 kts with seas fading from 28 ft at 57.5S 135.5W aimed northeast. Something to monitor. 


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 the models are hinting at yet another gale building in the Northern Gulf on Sat (10/19) with 45 kt west winds and seas building to 34 ft at 55.5N 153W aimed east. The gale is to lift northeast from there.

Windswell Outlook
On Wednesday (10/16) no fetch or windswell production potential is forecast relative to California or Hawaii as strong low pressure takes over the Gulf of Alaska. No change on Thursday (10/17) for California or Hawaii.  On Fri (10/18) high pressure is to build in the Southern Gulf producing north winds at 20-30 kts for Central CA producing raw local windswell but light winds for North CA. For Hawaii spotty patches of east winds at 15 kts are to be 900 nmiles east of Hawaii likely not producing any windswell of interest. On Sat (10/19) north winds are to be 20-25 kts for most of California except Cape Mendocino making small and raw local windswell. No fetch of interest is forecast for Hawaii.  


South Pacific

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


MJO/ENSO Forecast


Cool Pool Recharging Along Peru

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: A double dip La Nina was in control 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 continued trying to build over equatorial waters over the Summer and Fall, but not enough to declare El Nino and not coupled with the atmosphere. In January 2019, those warm waters were fading, but then rebuilt late in Feb associated with Kelvin Wave (#3). But as of early June 2019 warm water was 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. El Nino was dead.

Fall/Winter 2019/2020 = 5.0/4.0 (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 is assumed the PDO has moved to the warm phase and that a weak borderline El Nino from 2018 is fading out, but not yet completely gone, especially in the atmosphere. Likewise it looks like a La Nina ocean temperature pattern is developing in the equatorial East Pacific, with cooler than normal waters tracking west on the equator. We assumed El Nino like momentum will hold for a while in the atmosphere will take a while to sense that the ocean temperature pattern has changed. But once it does, a turn towards a La Nina like atmospheric pattern will start to develop. that transition is expected in the late Nov-early Dec timeframe. Even so, moderation from the PDO might prevent La Nina from fully developing. Given all that, there is decent probability for a normal start to the Fall surf season (in the Northern Hemisphere) meaning a normal amount of number of storm days and storm intensity, resulting in a normal levels of swell, with normal duration and normal period. But by mid-Dec 2019, the number of storm days, intensity and duration of those storms should start fading and as a result, swell production should fade slightly as well. This pattern is expected to hold through April 2020.

KWGA/Equatorial Surface Wind Analysis & Short-term Forecast (KWGA - Kelvin Wave Generation Area - The area 5 degrees north and south of the equator from 170W to 135E)
Analysis (TAO Buoys): As of (10/11) 5 day average winds were moderately from the east over the Eastern equatorial Pacific shrinking in coverage but still present over the Central Pacific then building to moderate strength over the KWGA. Anomalies were neutral over the East equatorial Pacific continuing over the Central Pacific and neutral over the KWGA.
1 Week Forecast (GFS Model): On (10/12) light westerly anomalies were over the KWGA today. The forecast is for west anomalies to slow fade while moving east out of the KWGA while east anomalies build in from the west almost filling the KWGA on 10/17, then retrograding some at the end of the model run on 10/19 but with no sign of westerly anomalies in the KWGA.

Kelvin Wave Generation Area wind monitoring model: West and East

Longer Range MJO/WWB Projections:  
OLR Models: (10/11) A weak Inactive Phase of the MJO was over the KWGA today. The statistic model indicates the Inactive Phase is to slowly build to near strong strength at day 15 of the model run. The dynamic model indicates the same thing but with the Inactive Phase not building quite as strong. The 2 models are in sync.
Phase Diagrams 2 week forecast (ECMF and GEFS): (10/12) The statistical model depicts the Active Phase was modest over East Africa and is to migrate weakly to the east to the Central Indian Ocean 15 days out and exceedingly weak at that time. The GEFS model suggests the Active Phase is to slowly ease east from North Africa to the far Western Indian Ocean at day 15.
40 day Upper Level Model (assumed to be a statistical model): (9/30) This model has not updated in 2 weeks. It depicts a weak Inactive MJO was over the West Pacific today and is to slowly fade while tracking east pushing into Central America on 10/15 while a weak Active Phase starts building in the West Pacific on 10/20. It is to ease east pushing into Central America at the end of the model run on 11/9. A weak Inactive Phase is to be moving east into the West Pacific at that time.
4 Week CFS Model (850 mb wind): (10/11) This model depicts the Inactive Phase strong in the Indian Ocean while west anomalies holding on stubbornly over the KWGA today at modest strength. They are to slowly track east giving way to east anomalies in the KWGA starting 10/18 peaking on 10/27 and very weak while the Inactive Phase builds in the KWGA. East anomalies are to be filling the KWGA but then easing east and out of the KWGA on 11/1 while the Active Phase starts building into the KWGA giving way to west anomalies with those west anomalies starting to take over at the end of the model run on 11/8. Of note: Extremely strong east anomalies are filling the Indian Ocean today centered at 80E and are to remain unchanged through the end of the model run.
3 Month CFS Model (850 mb wind): (10/12) This model depicts a moderate Inactive MJO pattern filling the KWGA today but with weak west anomalies filling the KWGA for the moment. The forecast has the Inactive MJO signal holding in the KWGA through 11/7 with east anomalies building in the KWGA and peaking 10/20 then retrograding west with very weak west anomalies filling the KWGA through the duration of the Inactive Phase. A weak Active Phase is to develop 11/6 holding through 11/29 with solid west anomalies in the heart of the KWGA. A weak Inactive MJO signal is to develop 11/29 holding through the end of the model run on 1/9/2020 with east anomalies trying to build in the far West KWGA but not really making it and very weak west anomalies fading but still present filling the KWGA through the end of the model run. Of note: Strong east anomalies are in the core of the Indian Ocean today at 80E and are to hold solid through  through the end of the model run but showing signs of tracking east to 120E at the end of the model run. The low pass filter changed on 7/25 and is holding today with a low pressure bias with 2 contour line in control of the KWGA centered on the dateline reaching east to California. A third contour line is to develop on 12/1 while a high pressure bias builds in the Indian Ocean starting 10/22. This model indicates that a weak El Nino like pattern is to possibly rebuild. That is not believable given the subsurface and surface water temperature anomaly pattern over the equatorial Pacific. But it is still a bit early to declare that an outright impossibility. 

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

Subsurface Waters Temps
TAO Array: (10/12) Today in the far West Pacific water temps are 30 degs over a steady area reaching east to 177E while the 29 deg isotherm was steady at 171W today. The 28 deg isotherm line was steady at 155W today. The 24 deg isotherm was steady at 120W today. Anomaly wise, gentle warm anomalies are filling the entire Pacific with a pocket at +2 degs to 150 meters down on the dateline with +3 deg anomalies reaching east to 120W indicative of Kelvin Wave #5 on the move to the east. Neutral anomalies were off Ecuador reaching west to 105W reaching down 150 meters. The collapse of a previous cool pool in the East Pacific is a significant positive development. The hi-res GODAS animation posted 10/5 indicates warm water from Westerly Wind Burst #5 has formed a Kelvin Wave under the Dateline with temps +2-3 degs at 150W with cool anomalies from 120W into Ecuador drawing up from depth to the surface. No warming was present east of 120W. The GODAS animation appears to be 1 week behind the TAO data but also is more detailed and accurately modeled.
Sea Level Anomalies: (10/5) A broad area of positive anomalies were on the dateline from 150E reaching east to near 125W at +5 cms. Negative anomalies were fading but still present between Ecuador to 110W at -5 cms but backtracking compared to days and week previous still forming a cool triangle reaching up into Central America and down to Chile suggestive of La Nina, but no longer with any real momentum pushing west, and if anything retrograding east.

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: (10/11) The latest images ( 1.2 3.4 ) indicate strong cool anomalies were holding along Peru and Ecuador up to the Galapagos and looking to start tracking west on the equator.  Modest warm anomalies were from Central America west to 150W north of the equator and then broader coverage west of there to the dateline. Of Note - Previous strong pockets of warm anomalies that were 1 degree north of the equator from Ecuador to 120W are dissipating. There was no real coverage of  warm anomalies south of the equator. There has been a steady evaporation of El Nino in the East equatorial Pacific south of the equator with La Nina trying to develop there in multi week long pulses.  We appear to be entering a cold pulse now. 
Hi-res 7 day Trend (10/11): Today a fading patch of cool water was dissipating between Ecuador over the Galapagos and out to 120W. West of there a neutral to weak warming trend was in effect. The short term trend is towards cooling.  And the long term trend has been towards cooling over the past 2 months.
Hi-res Overview: (10/11) A La Nina like cool stream has been pushing west on the equator starting with a broad bubble of cool water along Chile and Peru then tracking off Ecuador to 115W. It looks weaker today over the Central equator, but it was building and getting ready to pulse in the East Pacific. Warmer than normal water was straddling the equator from the remnants of El Nino, mainly north of the equator and all gone south of the equator. South of the equator a cool triangle was apparent from South Chile northwest to 120W then east on the equator to Ecuador. El Nino appears to be in retreat and La Nina appears to be trying to develop, but less markedly since 9/30.
Nino1.2 Daily CDAS Index Temps: (10/12) Today's temps were steady today at -1.736 after dropping to -1.921 degs on 10/10, that after falling hard to -1.8 degs on 9/15, then up to +0.030 on 10/2. Temps have been pretty consistently negative since June 1.
Nino 3.4 Daily CDAS Index Temps:
(10/12) Temps were rising some today at +0.167 after previously bottoming out on 8/28 at -0.510 degs and 9/15 at -0.60 degs. The trend has been generally downward since mid-June.

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 (10/12) The model indicates a cooling trend set up late summer with  temps -0.2 degs in mid-Sept. The forecast unrealistically has temps rising dramatically after that reaching +0.5 degs by Oct 1 (which did not occur) and then forecast to toggle between the +0.3 to +0.5 deg range through April 2020, then fading to neutral in early June and diving to -0.2 degs in July. According to this model a neutral sea surface temperature pattern biased slightly warm is forecast for the mid-term, possibly turning cooler after that.
IRI Consensus Plume: The Aug 2019 Plume depicts temps are at +0.30 degs in August, and are to hold in the +0.50 range into Dec/Jan, then fading slightly to +0.45 in May/April 2020. 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) (10/12): The daily index was positive today at +4.45. The 30 day average was negative at -9.93. The 90 day average was rising at -6.86, suggesting a neutral ENSO pattern was developing.
ESPI Index (like SOI but based on satellite confirmed precipitation. Positive and/or rising is good, negative and/or falling is bad): August +0.64, July +0.82, June -0.32, May +1.10, April +0.34, March +1.0, Feb +1.29, Jan +0.193. This index has been steadily positive but still indicates mostly ENSO neutral conditions (not El Nino).

Pacific Decadal Oscillation
Per NOAAs index recent values: June 2017 +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 -0.19, Mar -0.61, April -0.89, May -0.69, June -0.85, July -0.09, Aug -0.43, Sept -0.46, Oct -0.75, Nov -0.78, Dec -0.12, Jan -0.23, Feb -0.55 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): June 2017 +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, April +0.11, May +0.11, June -0.04, July +0.11, Aug +0.18, Sept +0.09. No real 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

Powerlinessurf Jeff Clark Inside Mavericks

Local Interest

Stormsurf Video Surf Forecast for the week starting Sunday (10/13):
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NBC News - Climate Change and Surfing:

Stormsurf and Mavericks on HBO Sports with Bryant Gumbel

Mavericks Invitational Pieces Featuring Stormsurf:

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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