Weekend Surf Forecast 24 - 26 February 2017
COASTALWATCH | WEEKEND SURF FORECAST
Forecast issued Thursday, 23 February 2017
There’s swell inbound from all angles this weekend. The East Coast falls under the simultaneous influence of several wave-trains; ranging from ESE across southern Queensland coasts, to SSE and SE across the NSW coast. The upshot of these multiple wave-trains is several days of 2 to 3ft surf – the only downside being predominant onshore winds. Over west the grass is looking a bit greener. A powerful SSW groundswell across the Margaret River region coincides with early light offshore winds on Friday and Saturday; probably making for the best conditions you’re likely to see anywhere around the country this weekend. Both Victoria and South Australia don’t fare too badly with respect to swell either; also receiving a solid round of SSW groundswell that’s set to peak at very substantial levels on Saturday. The downside is predominant onshore winds that will keep surface quality below average across the southern states all weekend.
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Sydney, Newcastle and the South Coast
On the one hand it’s not shaping up as the highest quality surf you’ve ever seen this weekend. On the other, you’ve got to take whatever is on offer in summer. Over the next few days that will consist of a broad spectrum of swells; mostly materialising at 2 to 3ft at short, 7 to 8 second periods.
Friday sees a smaller combination of swells well suited to the majority of exposed beaches. This is closely followed by a minor rise in S windswell on Saturday, with accompanying south to south-easterly winds leaving little to be desired. A stronger push in SE windswell is set to follow on Sunday, but once again we have an onshore SE or ESE airflow likely to freshen as the day progresses, so it may well be worth getting in earlier rather than later.
Mix of dominant ENE swell, NE windswell and background SSE swell. Sets around 2ft+ across the most exposed open breaks, grading to 1 – 2ft elsewhere. WIND: Early NNE shifting S 10 to 15 knots during the morning.
Background E swell superseded by rising SSE windswell. Sets around 2 – 3ft south facing breaks, grading smaller elsewhere. WIND: Early S change 15 to 25 knots, easing during the afternoon.
SE windswell Consistent 2 – 4ft exposed breaks, grading smaller elsewhere. WIND: E 5 to 15 knots, tending ESE during the afternoon.
Queensland and Far Northern NSW
A welcome increase in ESE swell maintains several days of small-scale surf; mostly ranging from 2 to 3ft across the region throughout Friday and Saturday; albeit a little infrequent in the upper range. The dominant energy inbound over the next few days has relatively remote origins, situated well east of New Zealand. As a result, 3ft sets are likely to a little scarce – particularly on Saturday. By Sunday the tail end of this pulse should be down to a slower 2ft, so it’s well worth making the most of the peak energy showing up on Friday and Saturday.
Long range, mid-period ESE swell fills in. Sets up to 2 - 3ft exposed breaks with long waits between sets. Grading smaller inside the points and bays. WIND: Early light SW/ SSW inshore tending SE 10 to 20 knots.
Long range, mid-period ESE swell slowly fades. Slower 2 - 3ft exposed breaks with long waits between sets. Grading smaller elsewhere. WIND: Early light SW/SSW inshore tending SE 15 to 20 knots during the afternoon.
Long range ESE swell. Around 2ft exposed breaks. Grading smaller inside the points and bays. WIND: Early SSW inshore tending SE 10 to 20 knots.
There’s new swell inbound just in time for the weekend. Friday marks the onset of a steady building trend in SW groundswell that’s set to culminate in large surf across exposed beaches on Saturday; peaking in the 6ft plus realm across exposed beaches, while grading to about 4ft across the Surf Coast. The downside is a persistent onshore, southerly quarter airflow hampering conditions. Onshore winds aside, it will probably be worth making the most of Saturday’s conditions across the Surf Coast. By Sunday winds will have swung to the east, leaving exposed west-facing stretches as the only decent options – and they aren’t exactly a dime-a-dozen.
Reinforcing mid-period WSW swell builds in. Possibly undersized at 2 – 4ft exposed beaches early, building towards 3 – 5ft during the morning and up to 4 – 6ft+ during the arvo. Ranging from 1 – 2ft across the Surf Coast early, up to 2 – 4ft later. WIND: Light SSW 5 to 15 knots, freshening during the day.
Large SW groundswell peaks. Sets ranging from 5 – 8ft exposed coasts. Grading to 3 – 4ft+ across the Surf Coast. WIND: Early S 10 to 20 knots, tending to SE during the late arvo.
Easing SW groundswell. Solid 4 - 6ft sets across exposed beaches early, easing to 4 – 5ft during the day and smaller later. Grading to 2 – 4ft across the Surf Coast, easing to 2 – 3ft. WIND: E 10 to 20 knots, turning SE later in the day.
You shouldn’t have too much trouble putting yourself amongst some quality waves over the next few days. The usual combination of solid swell and early light offshore/ swinging onshore lends the focus to early surfs – but the bays should also have plenty of options as winds swing south.
Early Friday morning holds a great window for clean conditions as a large SSW swell peaks in the vicinity of 6ft across the Southwest Coast under early light E winds. Saturday morning also offers up a similar, window of opportunity as lighter winds tend variable ahead of a usual shift to the south. It’s well worth making the most of both days. Sunday looms as a bit of a stick in the surfing-mud; characterised by smaller leftover SW swell and strong onshore SSW winds all day.
New SSW groundswell shows under morning ESE winds. Southwest coast: 5-7ft, larger sets possible at magnets. Perth/Mandurah: 1-1.5ft, 2ft sets at magnets. WIND: ESE at 15-20kt, easing before tending 15kts SSW.
Reinforced SSW swell early, easing quickly. Southwest coast: 4-6ft at dawn, easing. Perth/Mandurah: 1-1.5ft, easing. WIND: E at 10-15kts, tending S'ly.
SSW groundswell bottoms out under moderate South - SW winds. Southwest coast: 2-3ft+ early, easing. Perth/Mandurah: 0.5-1ft. WIND: SSW at 20-25kts. Lighter variable Perth, Mandurah early.
A solid round of SSW groundswell will provide plenty of solid surfing options across South Australia this weekend – that is if you don’t mind it onshore. Friday looks like offering up the most manageable conditions as a lighter southerly airflow coincides with a steady rise in SSW swell. Saturday’s peak in size is marred by stronger south-easterlies across the South Coast, so seeking out the more exposed, west facing stretches may well be worth your while. Likewise Sunday should see moderate SSE winds keeping a lid on quality surfable options as the swell eases throughout the day.
New SSW swell builds in. Sets around 2 – 3ft exposed South Coast beaches, rising to 3 – 4ft during the afternoon. Grading to 1ft across the Mid Coast. WIND: Early light S, freshening during the arvo.
SSW groundswell peaks. Sets to 3 - 5ft exposed South Coast beaches. Grading to 1 – 2ft across the Mid Coast. WIND: SE 10 to 20 knots, tending SSE and easing during the afternoon.
Easing SSW groundswell. Sets ranging from 2 - 4ft exposed South Coast breaks, fading later. Grading to a cross-shore 0.5ft across the Mid Coast. WIND: SE 10 to 15 knots, tending S during the arvo.
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