The Weekend Surf Forecast 30 June - 2 July, 2017
COASTALWATCH | WEEKEND SURF FORECAST
Forecast issued Thursday, 29 June 2017
The relentless run of good surf continues into the first weekend of July as all states feel the brunt of significant winter swell-events. The swell-tap turn on right on time across the NSW coast; taking the form of a large, mid-period S swell that will have most surfers scurrying to southern corners on Saturday morning. Sunday is, however, probably the pick. A wider variety of options will open up as the swell eases and turns SSE, while winds go from light offshore to light and variable to light N during the afternoon.
Further north, the acute southerly swell-direction will produce wildly disparate surfing conditions; ranging from bit and out of control across the most exposed northern NSW coasts, to a tiny 1 to 2ft or less inside southern Queensland’s point breaks. The trick, of course, is to find something good in between these extremes – and both Saturday and Sunday will deliver these options in spades.
Across Victoria, the surfing focus briefly shifts to the states exposed beaches as SSW swell settles enough to open up solid, clean options under light northerly winds, with easing SSW swell throughout Saturday reinforced by another strong WSW swell on Sunday. The same swell and wind pattern will also produce another epic weekend across South Australia.
Over West, it’s a case of seeking shelter from the storm across the Margaret River region. A heavy rise in SW storm-swell and howling onshores is set to render most of the coastline unsurfable all weekend – and as is usually the case in such circumstances, only the Northwest coast and Indonesia will really benefit from this mid-winter activity.
Sydney, Newcastle and the South Coast
It’s shaping up as a seriously pumping and seriously cold weekend of waves across the NSW coast. A vigorous frontal system pushing up into the southern Tasman Sea out of the polar depths brings frigid south-westerlies and a powerful round of S/SSE swell to the region. The latter is set build in steeply throughout Friday; going from small to tiny levels at first light to an unruly 4 to 6ft by sundown. This leads in a peak in robust, mid-period SSE swell on Saturday in the 6ft range across southern exposures, while producing a wide variety of clean waves in the 3 to 6ft range across the majority of exposed east facing breaks. If Saturday turns out to be a bit too big and unruly for your liking – or at your local – then it’s definitely worth setting some time aside on Sunday. An overnight drop in size should see ultra-clean, 3 to 5ft SSE swell pumping under early light WNW winds, before falling away to light and variable to light north, making for a full day of excellent conditions state-wide.
Steep rising S swell. Undersized at Dawn; about 2 – 4ft south facing breaks, rising to 3 – 4ft+, then to 4 – 6ft around lunchtime and bigger later. Grading smaller elsewhere with size depending on exposure. WIND: Early WSW 20 to 30 knots, turning SW to SSW mid to late morning, then easing and tending back to the SW during the arvo.
S swell gradually eases. Solid 5 – 6ft+ sets south facing breaks, easing during the afternoon. Grading to 2 – 5ft elsewhere with size depending on exposure. WIND: Early WSW 10 to 20 knots tending SSW during the afternoon.
Easing SSE swell. Sets ranging from 3 – 4ft+ south facing breaks, grading to 2 – 4ft elsewhere. WIND: Early light W tending light and variable, then light N during the afternoon.
Queensland and Far Northern NSW
The typical winter S swell conundrum will be in full effect this weekend. The onset of a large, powerful round of S swell across northern NSW on Friday night will precipitate a major jump in surf-heights across the region by Saturday morning; pushing in at a solid 5 to 6ft plus across southern exposures, while generating still solid waves ranging anywhere from 2 to 6ft depending on exposure. In contrast, southern Queensland coasts will only see a small fraction of this energy wrapping in – particularly while the swell retains a SSW deepwater bias in Saturday. Having said that, the swell should be big enough to wrap in at a fun, 2 to 3ft plus across the more exposed southern Queensland breaks like Duranbah and TOS. As the swell eases again throughout Sunday the deepwater direction trends slightly SSE – and this should be just enough to keep set waves chugging in at a fun size north of the border all day.
Rising S windswell. Junk 1 - 3ft exposed northern NSW breaks early, building towards 2 – 3ft+ during the day and up to 3 – 4ft later. Up to 1ft exposed QLD coasts, bumping up later. Grading to near flat inside the points and bays. WIND: Early WSW to SW 5 to 15 knots, tending S to SSE 15 to 25 knots during the afternoon.
Large S swell builds in. Sets to 5 - 6ft+ exposed northern NSW breaks. Up to 2 – 3ft exposed QLD coasts early and picking up with the incoming tide. Grading to 1 - 2ft inside the points and bays. WIND: Early SW to SSW 10 to 20 knots tending SSE and easing later.
SSE swell. Sets ranging from 4 - 6ft exposed northern NSW breaks early, easing to 3 – 5ft later. Grading to 2 – 4ft exposed QLD coasts early, and down to 1 - 3ft inside the points and bays. WIND: Early light WSW to SSW tending light and variable, then light SE later.
Victoria’s exposed beaches, mostly subsumed in white-water throughout the winter months, look like making a brief return to form this weekend. Once Friday’s still large round of SW swell slowly eases, we can look forward to clean, 3 to 5ft conditions along the exposed stretches on Saturday morning, with a further easing in wave-heights opening up more user-friendly options as the day progresses. Sunday will offer up another full day of clean conditions across southern exposures as a NNE flow progressively strengthens throughout the day. This favourable wind-regime coincides with a new round of WSW groundswell – again making for solid, challenging conditions ranging anywhere from 3 to 6ft at these venues depending on exposure.
SW groundswell. Sets to 6 – 8ft exposed beaches. Clean sets to 4 – 6ft+ across the Surf Coast. WIND: SSW 15 to 25 knots early, easing to 10 to 15 knots during the afternoon.
SW swell slowly eases. Around 3 – 5ft exposed beaches early. Sets to 2 – 3ft+ across the Surf Coast, dropping a foot during the arvo. WIND: Early light NW to NNW 5 to 10 knots, tending NNE during the arvo.
New WSW groundswell. Sets around 4 – 5ft+ exposed beaches early, easing during the afternoon. Grading to an inconsistent 2 – 3ft+ across the Surf Coast. WIND: Early N 10 to 20 knots, tending NNE and freshening during the afternoon.
If I had a Tardis I’d throw in my boards and a bunch of supplies and set the coordinates for the Northwest this weekend. As the Margaret River region receives a 10 to 15ft SW storm-swell-hiding under strong onshore winds, the greener pastures further north beckon, with blue skies and pumping offshore surf forecast as the bulk of the swell kicks in on Sunday. In the absence of this, there’s always the sheltered bays for some rideable and still challenging conditions all weekend.
Old SSW swell bottoms out early before a rising combo of wind swell, mid period SW swell. South West: 3-4ft+, rising. Perth/Mandurah: 1ft+. WIND: NW 20-30kts shifting SW in the afternoon.
XL SW groundswell fills in under fresh SW winds. South West: 6-8ft+, rising 10-15ft late afternoon. Perth/Mandurah: 1-2ft, 3-4ft later. WIND: SW 20-25kts, tending 30kts SSW.
Large SW tending SSW groundswell easing. South West: 8-10ft, easing. Perth/Mandurah. 2-3ft+. WIND: SSW 15 - 20kts tending S’ly. Offshore SE winds Perth/Mandurah early.
Thursday’s solid, onshore conditions marked a fleeting blip on the radar to what’s been – and what will continue to be an excellent run of surf across the state. As a new high pressure system builds in over the region on Friday winds are set to shift back offshore, making for clean, solid conditions as SW groundswell continues to push in at anywhere from 3 to 6ft across the South Coast depending on exposure. While this episode is then set to scale down to more sedate levels over the weekend, winds will remain offshore, making for great conditions state-wide both on Saturday and Sunday.
Heavy SSW groundswell. Sets ranging from 3 – 6ft exposed South Coast beaches, easing marginally later in the day. Ranging from 1 - 3ft across the Mid Coast. WIND: Early light and variable tending NNE 5 to 15 knots.
Rapid decline in SSW groundswell. 2 – 4ft exposed South Coast beaches, fading to 2 – 3ft during the day and smaller later. Up to 1ft across the Mid Coast. WIND: N 10 to 20 knots, freshening during the day.
SW groundswell slowly eases. Clean sets 2 – 3ft+ exposed South Coast breaks, easing into the afternoon. Around 1ft across the Mid Coast, smaller later. WIND: Early N 10 to 20 knots, tending NNE.
The final week of winter is turning it on, just about everywhere you look.
Bring on the weekend.
Winter isn't done yet.
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