Australian Open Of Surfing's Big Weekend
AUSTRALIAN OPEN OF SURFING | EVENT FORECAST PARTNER
It's crunch time at the Australian Open Of Surfing with the world's top surfers including defending champs Dion Atkinson & Tyler Wright as well as Julian Wilson, Mikey Wright, Sally Fitzgibbons, Bronte Macaulay, Isabella Nichols and Dimity Stoyle are lining up for round five and the quarter-finals in some solid 3-5 foot set waves in stormy Sydney.
Get down to the Manly Beach front for a jam-packed weekend in the surf, in the skate and BMX bowl and for the huge MTV beach music stage featuring Elk and Hermitude as well as PLTS + The Jezebels + DJ Hounded on Sunday night.
Ben Macartney's Weekend Surf Forecast
Saturday 4 March
Short range E windswell. Consistent 2 - 3ft+, easing during the afternoon.
WIND: Early ESE 10 to 20 knots, tending lighter NNE during the morning before turning light SW to SSW during the afternoon/ evening.
WEATHER: Cloudy. Very high (95%) chance of showers. Heavy falls possible.
Sunday 5 March
Mix of short range E windswell, S groundswell and SSE windswell. Around 2 – 3ft.
WIND: Early light W tending SSW during the afternoon/ evening.
WEATHER: Cloudy. Medium (60%) chance of showers. The chance of a thunderstorm during the afternoon.
Surfing conditions aside, we’re in for an overnight drenching as a weak low off the Central Coast tracks SSE across Sydney overnight. The good news is we can look forward to an upswing in short-range E swell following on Saturday morning; producing consistent 2 to 3ft surf with scope for odd larger sets. The swell-source is a deepening surface trough located just offshore, running parallel to the southern half of the NSW coast. A weak low pressure system formed along the length of the trough on Friday and as mentioned, the low will track slowly south over the course of the weekend.
The increase in swell is the by-product of close range easterly fetch freshening to 15 to 25 knots east of the trough. The head of this fetch nosed in towards Sydney during Friday afternoon and a subsequent push in E windswell will follow on Saturday morning. At the same time there’s been shifting guidance on how the low will impact local conditions. It now looks like winds may start out strong onshore out of the ESE early on Saturday before swinging lighter N as the low continues on its poleward track during the morning – but this may change again depending on how the low behaves overnight. The good news is winds should turn lighter SW or even WSW as the low moves south of Sydney on Saturday afternoon, making for improving conditions as the swell starts to ease.
Although the E swell is projected to fade a notch by Sunday, it’s still likely to be generating 2 to 3ft sets in conjunction with an underlying S groundswell that should show peak size during the morning. Even better is clearing weather associated with the low’s southward movement of the South Coast. This should also culminate in lighter W to SW during the morning preceding a shift to the south during the afternoon. As discussed on Thursday, a rising SSE windswell forecast for Sunday afternoon isn’t projected to have a major impact. Given Manly Beach’s straight east facing aspect, very little of this low-period energy is likely to refract around the Bower into the contest area unless there’s a stronger SE bias than latest model runs are suggesting. Stay tuned for a final update on Saturday afternoon.
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