Weekend Surf Forecast 25 - 27 August, 2017

24 Aug 2017 0

Ben Macartney

Chief Surf Forecaster

COASTALWATCH | WEEKEND SURF FORECAST

Forecast issued Thursday, 24 August 2017

The last weekend of August delivers pretty typically late winter conditions around the country. The NSW coast receives a short-period blast of S swell Friday that will clean up just in time for Saturday morning. This is backed up by a small pulse of long-period energy from the same direction on Sunday, along with a renewed rise in S windswell; making for a full weekend of consistent surf across southern exposures. While the southerly swell-regime won’t exactly get the blood pumping across southern Queensland coasts, it will be packing plenty of punch just across the border all weekend.

Further south, Victorian and South Australian coasts are the recipients of a powerful round of Southern Ocean groundswell; strong enough to light up Vicco’s Surf Coast while also generating big, clean challenging conditions across most of South Australia’s exposed stretches throughout Saturday. Finally, in the wake of an interminable, dark and stormy winter across the Margaret River region, there is at long last two full days of offshore winds and mid-range groundswell on offer this weekend.

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Got a big weekend planned? Photo: Uploaded to CW by Richard Walker.

Got a big weekend planned? Photo: Uploaded to CW by Richard Walker.

Sydney, Newcastle and the South Coast
There’s south swell on tap along the NSW coast. Friday morning sees short period S windswell topping out at solid, albeit windblown 4ft plus, ahead of a slow decline setting in from there. By Saturday morning we should be looking at much cleaner 2 to 3ft leftovers groomed by early offshore winds, preceding light onshores developing as the swell continues to drop later in the day. Sunday then offers up an interesting combination of two new south swells; disparate in both their origins and characteristics. The first is a small, long distance pulse of high period S groundswell, slowly filling in throughout the day. This has it’s origins well below the mainland and hence will be inconsistent and probably only showing some size across south facing beaches and deepwater breaks. The second is a localised S windswell, gradually picking up steeply as winds turn south and freshen during the afternoon.

Friday
Lumpy S windswell peaks early. Sets to 3 - 4ft+ south facing beaches early, easing to 2 – 3ft+ into the afternoon. Grading smaller elsewhere with size depending on exposure. WIND: SSW to S 15 to 25 knots, tending lighter S to SSE during the afternoon.

Saturday
Easing SSE swell under light winds. Slow sets to 2 - 3ft south facing breaks early, easing into the afternoon. Grading smaller elsewhere WIND: WSW to SW 5 to 15 knots, tending light S to SE during the day.

Sunday
Small, long-period S groundswell fills in. Slow sets ranging from 2 – 3ft south facing beaches, grading smaller elsewhere with size depending on exposure. Rising S windswell picks up to 3ft+ during the late arvo. WIND: SSW 10 to 15 knots, tending S during the morning and SSE during the afternoon.

A solid increase in S swell keeps the focus on southern exposures this weekend. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Captain_Kookman.

A solid increase in S swell keeps the focus on southern exposures this weekend. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Captain_Kookman.

Queensland and Far Northern NSW
It’s not exactly the most scintillating forecast you’ve ever seen, but there are plenty of waves to be had this weekend. The southerly origin means northern NSW will be pulling in the lion’s share of energy; probably peaking at a windy 3 to 4ft or more across southern exposures early on Saturday before slowly scaling down from there. Compared to last weekend’s monster S swell, this one presents pretty modest surf-potential for southern Queensland coasts; mostly in the 2 to 3ft range along southern Queensland’s exposed breaks, grading to small to tiny levels inside the points and bays.

Friday
S windswell picks up. Sets 2 - 3ft, rising 3 - 4ft exposed northern NSW breaks during the afternoon. Grading 1 - 2ft exposed southern Queensland beaches, bumping up to 2ft or so later. Tiny early within sheltered points, rising marginally into the afternoon. WIND: Early SSW 15 to 25 knots, tending S and freshening 20 to 30 knots.

Saturday
SSE swell holds early before easing. Sets to 3 - 5ft exposed northern NSW breaks, easing later. Grading to 2 - 3ft exposed QLD coasts and to a smaller 1 - 2ft+ inside the points and bays. WIND: Early inshore SSW tending S 20 to 25 knots, then SSE and easing during afternoon.

Sunday
Easing SSE swell eases throughout the day. 2 – 4ft sets exposed northern NSW breaks, grading to 2ft+ across exposed Queensland and smaller inside the points and bays. WIND: Early SW to SSW 10 to 15 knots, tending lighter SSE to ESE during the afternoon.

Northern NSW coasts will pull in the bulk of size under the prevailing S swell this weekend. Photo: Uploaded to SW by Palmy_Surfer.

Northern NSW coasts will pull in the bulk of size under the prevailing S swell this weekend. Photo: Uploaded to SW by Palmy_Surfer.

Victoria
If it wasn’t for Sunday’s onshore winds, the forecast for this weekend would pretty well qualify as epic across the Surf Coast. As it stands, only Saturday really fits the bill; fulfilling the requisite criteria of large, long-period SW groundswell and offshore WNW winds. This event is set to build in steadily throughout the day, showing peak size during the afternoon and probably maintaining similarly large surf into Sunday morning. It’s the passage of a cold front and across Bass Strait on Saturday night that’s responsible for moderate onshore southerly quarter winds throughout Sunday. Still, it’s not exactly a write off. The winds are projected to blow at about 10 to 15 knots, making for still good cross-shore conditions as the swell slowly backs off throughout the day.

Friday
New SW groundswell begins to show. Sets to 3 – 4ft+ exposed beaches, rising 4 - 5ft+ in the arvo. Grading to 2 - 3ft across the Surf Coast, bumping up later. WIND: WNW to W 10 to 15 knots.

Saturday
Solid SW groundswell shows. Sets around 5 – 8ft early, building to 6 - 8ft+ along exposed beaches. Wrapping at 4 – 6ft+ across Surf Coast. WIND: WNW 10 to 20 knots, tending W and easing during the afternoon.

Sunday
Easing SW groundswell. Sets to 6 – 8ft exposed beaches, easing towards 5 – 7ft later. Grading to 4 - 6ft across the Surf Coast, slowly easing. WIND: SSW 10 to 15 knots, tending S during the afternoon.

The starts align across the Surf Coast on Saturday, but not so much on Sunday. Photo: Brendan Boxall.

The starts align across the Surf Coast on Saturday, but not so much on Sunday. Photo: Brendan Boxall.

Western Australia
Well, hello allo allo. For the first time in a long time we can look forward to a full weekend of offshore winds and good-sized SSW swell across the Southwest. The new swell gradually builds in throughout Friday and holds peak size throughout Saturday, as offshore ESE winds maintain a full day of great conditions across exposed breaks. The trend continues throughout Sunday as a slow moving high pressure belt nosing into the Bight supports predominant ESE winds, keeping the declining SSW swell clean throughout the day.

Friday
Slight increase in SSW swell with continued offshores. South West: 3-5ft rising 6ft sets late. Perth/Mandurah: 1-2ft. WIND: ESE 5-10kts, tending SE 10-15kt+ in afternoon between the capes.

Saturday
Increase in SSW groundswell sets, continued offshore winds. South West: inconsistent 4-6ft, occasional plus sets at deepwater breaks early. Perth/Mandurah: inconsistent 2ft, tending flat in between. WIND: ESE 5-10kts, with gusts 15kts.

Sunday
SW groundswell easing with offshore wind. South West: clean decreasing 4-5ft sets, turning inconsistent 3 - 4ft. Perth/Mandurah. 1-2ft, decreasing. WIND: Variable E'ly 5-10kt with shift to light SE late.

There's clean, pumping SSW swell on tap across the Southwest all weekend. Photo: www.surfingmargaretriver.com

There's clean, pumping SSW swell on tap across the Southwest all weekend. Photo: www.surfingmargaretriver.com

South Australia
Another major SW swell-event caps off a pretty good winter across South Australia. Saturday is easily shaping up as the pick, with early offshore land-breezes greeting a large SSW groundswell steadily building throughout the day. So no matter where you find yourself around the state, the surf is likely to be on the pump – at least until sea-breezes spring up during the afternoon. While there will still be some excellent options east of Adelaide early on Sunday, the South Coast is likely to see onshore southerly quarter winds developing early and persisting throughout the day, so it looks like it’s well worth making the most of Saturday’s conditions while they last.

Friday
SW groundswell bottoms out early prior to fresh energy filling in later. South Coast: 2-3ft early, rising 4ft sets later. Mid Coast: 1ft. WIND: Light NW to WNW 5 to15kts early, easing. Light variable winds on the Mid Coast early.  

Saturday
Larger SW groundswell shows under generally favourable winds. South Coast: 3-5ft, rising to 4 - 6ft. Mid Coast. 1-2ft, potential for inconsistent larger sets at magnets later. WIND: 10-15kts NW tending W to SW during the afternoon. Light offshore winds on the Mid tending sea breezes.

Sunday
WSW groundswell slowly eases. South Coast: 3-5ft+ at exposed beaches, easing. Mid Coast: 1-2ft, easing. WIND: WSW 5 to 10kts tending SSE during the afternoon. Light offshore winds on the Mid coast tending sea breezes.

There will be plenty of big, clean options around the state on Saturday. Photo: Dan Wyer.

There will be plenty of big, clean options around the state on Saturday. Photo: Dan Wyer.


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