Drug Aware Pro Margaret River Surf Breakdown & Forecast
COASTALWATCH | DRUG AWARE MARGARET RIVER PRO
Forecast issued by Ben Macartney 27 March 2017
At first glance at the forecast for the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro, you might be inclined to pick as many guys with plenty of big-wave experience as you can. That means Josh Kerr, for one. Then you’d go forall the guys from Hawaii; JJF, Sebastain Zietz and Ezekiel Lau.
The arrival of a heavy, long-period SSW groundswell is now a certainty for the opening day of the waiting period; Wednesday 29 March. The source is a deep extratropical low that’s currently generating stronger-than-forecast 40 to 50kt SSW winds over the south-eastern Indian Ocean. The storm is riding in on the back of a previous low that set up a still highly energetic sea-state; thereby facilitating rapid wave-growth into the 30 to 40ft range inside Margaret River’s swell window over the next 24 hours.
The arrival of the resulting SSW groundswell is shaping up as a proper big-wave day at Margaret River; holding potential for clean, consistent 8 to 12ft surf, punctuated by occasional larger sets in the 12 to 15ft range throughout Wednesday. In the past, professional surfing contests have run at Main Break when it gets this big – and there’s no doubt it will be holding the swell. But rather than turning the event into something better suited to the Big Wave Tour, the WSL have a Plan B up their sleeve. That plan is to relocate to what is arguably the best wave the Southwest has to offer: North Point.
North Point is situated inside a bay that’s substantially blocks swells arriving from such an acute swell direction of 200 degrees. However, the impressive numbers associated with this pulse (18ft SSW at 17 second periods) should see sets wrapping into the bay at far more manageable levels; potentially ranging from 5 to 8ft all day.
By Thursday morning this pulse should have eased enough to send the contest back to Mainbreak – and it looks like it will be pumping. Set waves should still be running at a solid 6 to 8ft early before gradually scaling down towards 4 to 6ft plus by the afternoon, with light ENE winds all morning tending variable ahead of light sea breezes into the afternoon.
While Friday morning is shaping up as a more typical 3 to 4ft day at Mainbreak, the arrival of a new, reinforcing SSW groundswell is likely to send wave-heights north again into the afternoon; with inconsistent 4 to 6ft sets likely late in the day. This marks the leading edge of a new episode that should hang in at similar 4 to 6ft plus levels throughout Saturday – and it looks like an offshore, easterly quarter wind-regime will remain in place all week. For more info on the outlook for Margaret River check the detailed forecast here.
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