Weekend Surf Forecast 7 - 9 December 2017
COASTALWATCH | WEEKEND SURF FORECAST
Forecast issued Thursday, 7 December 2017
Contrary to the early summer norm, the surf has been pumping – mostly along the Eastern Seaboard, but also Western Australia has seen it’s share of solid offshore days. Even Victoria’s exposed beaches have also had their moments. Like the end of a big night out, conditions come crashing back down to earth across many regions this weekend. The arrival of a SSE change along the NSW coast on Friday leads in a return to mediocre surf; characterised by smaller leftover E swell and some new S swell. Queensland also sees solid E swell on offer throughout Friday, followed by a return to smaller surf all weekend.
Further south, exposed Victorian coasts are also hampered by onshore winds ranging from west to south – and that will leave the Surf Coast as the best option for some cleaner 2 to 4ft waves all weekend. Further afield the West Coast sees some reasonably good, albeit small SW swell on Friday and Saturday mornings; with clean 2 to 3ft waves on offer before the seabreeze arrives during the day.
Sydney, Newcastle and the South Coast
Thursday was a bit like jumping in a Tardis and being transported a little way through time and space, directly into a pumping autumn day of stacked ENE swell groomed by light WNW winds. Of course, it’s not autumn and the Tardis is probably gathering dust out the back of some BBC studio in London.
Unfortunately these freakish early summer conditions are about to give way to a far more mundane forecast. Friday morning offers up a final window of opportunity to get amongst some still clean 3ft surf – this time arriving from a straighter easterly direction and at slightly longer intervals of 10 to 12 seconds. Winds are set to shift SE mid-Friday morning before freshening into the afternoon, so you’ll want to be out there at the proverbial sparrows. Saturday sees a new, fairly modest round of S swell mixing in with much smaller leftover E swell, but still fresh SSE winds won’t be doing us any favours. Sunday sees a return to light offshore winds greeting a mix of residual E and S swells; probably pushing much beyond 1 to 2ft across the region all day.
Reinforcing, long-range mid period ENE groundswell fills in. Solid sets to 2 – 4ft exposed open beaches with good waits between sets. Potentially mixing with new S swell picking up into the 2 to 3ft range during the afternoon. WIND: Early light SW to NW turning S to SE during the morning, then SSE and freshening to 20 to 25 knots during the afternoon.
New S swell supersedes leftover E swell at a junky 2 to 3ft south facing breaks, while grading to a slower 2ft along exposed open beaches. WIND: Early SSE 10 to 20 knots, easing and tending SE to NE during the afternoon.
Combination of faded S and E swells. Up to 1 - 2ft exposed beaches, grading smaller elsewhere. WIND: Early light and variable tending NE to NNE 10 to 15 knots during the afternoon.
Queensland and Far Northern NSW
While this week’s run of E swell continues at good size on Friday, it will be well and truly running out of gas by the weekend – so it’s definitely worth making the most of it while it lasts. Thursday arvo through early Friday sees the arrival of a long-range pulse of E swell; substantial enough to keep wave-heights ranging from 2 to 4ft – although it’s likely to be pretty slow in the upper range. Winds are set to swing to the NNE and freshen during the day and this will limit quality options from mid-morning onwards. Saturday then sees an early SSE change lending the focus back to the points and sheltered bays – but as mentioned the swell will be down a couple of notches in size and power. The addition of some short range SSE windswell into the mix on Sunday probably won’t rock your world; particularly given strong southerly quarter winds are set to persist all day.
Long range E swell. Ranging from 2 – 4ft exposed breaks, easing during the afternoon. WIND: Early light N to NW tending NNE 10 to 20 knots during the afternoon.
Leftover E swell. Slower set ranging from 2 to occasional 3ft along exposed beaches, grading to 1 – 2ft inside the points and bays. WIND: Early light WSW to WNW, ahead of a S change arriving early to mid morning, turning SSE 15 to 25 knots during the afternoon.
SSE windswell mixing with underlying E swell. Up to 2 – 3ft northern NSW south facing beaches, grading to about 2ft along exposed Queensland beaches and down to 1 - 2ft inside the points and bays. WIND: Early SSW inshore, tending SSE 15 to 20 knots during the day.
There’s a notable boost in wave-energy on the way for Victoria this weekend. This should see stronger 3 to 4ft waves along exposed beaches on Friday, preceding a stronger push into the 4 to 6ft range this weekend. The downside is a predominantly W to SSW wind-regime unsuitable for these venues – and that will leave the Surf Coast as the pick, with early WNW inshore winds tending to sea-breezes making for two full days of good quality 2 to 4ft conditions all weekend.
New mid-period SW swell fills in at 3 – 4ft along the exposed beaches. Wrapping at 1 – 3ft along the Surf Coast. WIND: SW to SSW 15 to 25 knots.
Old SW swell reinforced by new SW groundswell. Around 4 - 5ft+ along the exposed beaches and up to 4 – 6ft+ later. Rising from 2 – 3ft+ early towards 3 – 4ft along the Surf Coast. WIND: Early WNW 15 to 20 knots tending WSW during the afternoon.
Mid period SW swell holds around 4 – 5ft along exposed beaches, while wrapping at 3 - 4ft along the Surf Coast, easing during the afternoon. WIND: Early light WNW 5 to 10 knots, tending SW to SSW 10 to 20 knots during the afternoon.
You can pretty much forget about surfing in Perth this weekend, but there’s a bit of fun to be had across the Southwest. A couple of days of smaller-scale, mid-period SW swell should see sets in the 2 to 3ft range under early offshore winds both on Friday and Saturday. Come Sunday morning we should be looking at a more substantial SW swell; just large enough in height and long enough in period to produce stronger 3 to 4ft sets along exposed Southwest Coasts. As is the norm at this time of year it’s well worth making the most of the early offshore breezes before the southerlies arrive during the afternoons.
Further ease in swell under continued offshore morning winds. South West: Clean, 2 to 3ft. Perth/Mandurah: Clean, 0.5 to 1ft. WIND: E’ly at 20 to 25 knots easing before tending S’ly 20 knots.
Reinforcing SW groundswell shows rising sets. South West: Clean 2 to 3ft. Perth, Mandurah: Clean, 0.5ft. WIND: ENE at 10 to 20 knots tending variable then South at 20 knots.
Reinforced SW groundswell peaks early. South West: Clean, 3 to 4ft with possible larger sets early, easing. Perth/Mandurah: Clean, 1 to 1.5ft, easing. WIND: ESE at 10 to 15 knots tending S’ly.
Predominantly onshore winds will take the shine off conditions across the state for the next few days; making for pretty mediocre surf all weekend. Friday sees a good-sized SW swell ranging from 2 to 4ft along the more exposed South Coast beaches and it should hang in around 2 to 3ft on Saturday. This precedes the onset of a new, reinforcing SW pulse on Sunday; keeping set waves ranging either side of 3ft across the South Coast all day.
Combo of mid period SW swell, messy wind swell. South Coast: Messy, 2 to 4ft. Largest at magnets. Mid Coast: Messy, 1 to 1.5ft. Possible 2ft sets as the swell peaks. WIND: SSW 10 to 20 knots.
Minor overlap in mid period SW swell. South Coast: Semi clean, 1 to 3ft, slight rise later. Mid Coast: Unsettled, 0.5 to 1ft at best. WIND: W’ly at 10 knots tending SW.
Combo of mid period SW swell, messy wind swell. South Coast: Messy, 2 to 4ft, easing. Mid Coast: Messy, 1 to 1.5ft, easing. WIND: South to SSW 10 to 20 knots.
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Australia is a land of surfing extremes.
Classic autumn conditions prevail around much of the country this weekend.
The surfer was airlifted to hospital and is in a stable condition.
The surfer was airlifted to hospital and is in a stable condition.
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