Weekend Surf Forecast 15 - 17 November, 2019

14 Nov 2019 0 Share

Ben Macartney

Chief Surf Forecaster

COASTALWATCH | WEEKEND SURF FORECAST

Issued Thursday, 14 November 2019

Woah mid November; How did that happen? All of a sudden we’re experiencing warmer temperatures around the continent in line with the shift towards summer – not to mention a continued, subtle weakening of the Southern Ocean storm-track. Across the East Coast that’s generally translating into smaller surf and northerly winds this weekend. The NSW coast will continue to fare better under this pattern as a dominant south-swell regime continues to see maximum wave-heights focussed on the most south-facing shores. Unfortunately, none of the above bodes well for southern Queensland, with forecast conditions lying somewhere between dire and diabolical.

However, if you happen to find yourself in Victoria, your surfing prospects are looking much better. A consistent run of SW swell is lining up for the state this weekend, arriving under partially favourable west to SW winds; pretty well suited to surfing along the Great Ocean Road. South Australia will also do ok out of this pattern; benefiting from similar robust levels of SW swell, albeit under less than ideal, light to moderate onshores. That leaves the Southwest as another great place to be hunting around for a wave. Over the next couple of days early easterly quarter winds will groom a fun-run of SW swell; translating into conditions ranging from pretty good to straight up dreamy across exposed breaks – at least until winds turn onshore on Sunday.

Steamers in the sun. Photo: Uploaded to CW by BJChimp.

Steamers in the sun. Photo: Uploaded to CW by BJChimp.

Sydney, Newcastle and the South Coast
Following a pretty consistent run of good quality, directional south swell (interspersed with the odd NE swell) this spring so far, the incremental shift towards summer is finally starting to manifest smaller surf in the forecast. We’re now starting to see a weakening of the storm-track below the eastern half of the continent, translating into lower-levels of south swell emanating out of Bass Strait and from below Tasmania. Having said that, the weekend won’t be entirely devoid of surf. Yet another complex mid latitude low moving below Tasmania over the next 48 hours offers up a modest resurgence in south swell over the weekend. This now looks like translating into a minor uptick in size on Saturday afternoon, with scope for something in the 2 to 3ft range across southern exposures on Sunday – but if anything, this looks a bit optimistic.

Friday
Mid-period Southerly swell slowly fades. Ranging from 2 to 3ft across south facing beaches, inconsistent in the upper range and fading to 2ft by the evening. Grading to 2ft or less along open beaches. WIND: WNW 5 to 15 knots, tending North to NE 10 to 20 knots in the afternoon.

Saturday
Minor rise in Southerly windswell. Up to a junky 1 to 2ft across south facing beaches with scope for a bit more size in the 2ft+ range in the afternoon. Otherwise tiny to near-flat elsewhere with size depending on exposure. WIND: Southerly 10 to 20 knots, tending SSE to SE 10 to 15 knots during the morning, then ESE to ENE in the afternoon.

Sunday
Potential for small, directional South swell. Ranging from 2 to 3ft on the sets across south facing beaches, wrapping at closer to 1 to 2ft elsewhere with size depending on exposure. WIND: Light ENE around 10 knots, shifting SSE to SE 15 to 20 knots across the South Coast in the morning, extending to Sydney and Newcastle in the afternoon.

A modest upswing in south swell should be just enough to rip into across southern exposures on Sunday.

A modest upswing in south swell should be just enough to rip into across southern exposures on Sunday.

Queensland and Far Northern NSW
Over the next few days we see dwindling levels of South swell; still holding at a fun size south of the border on Friday, before fading to incrementally lower levels over the course of the weekend. Unfortunately there’s no 11th hour saving grace in sight for you surfing prospects. As the south swell slowly fades away it gives way to, well, not much at all. There’s only a hint of tiny, short period NE and SE windswells anticipated to fill the breach into Sunday and early next week, leaving the entire region effectively devoid of notable surf for days to come.

Friday
Reinforcing mid-period Southerly swell.  Far northern NSW: Ranging from 2 to 4ft across south swell magnets, wrapping at more like 1 to 3ft along open beaches with size depending on exposure. Southern QLD: Around 2ft at the most exposed beaches, otherwise wrapping at 1 to 2ft or less elsewhere. WIND: Early light and variable WNW, NNW up to 5 knots, tending Northerly, NNE and freshening to 15 to 25 knots in the afternoon.

Saturday
Leftover Southerly swell gradually fades. Far northern NSW: Around 2ft+ at the more exposed beaches, fading to 1 to 2ft. Otherwise smaller elsewhere with size depending on exposure. Southern QLD: NE windswell ranging from 1 to 2ft at the magnets, otherwise tiny to near-flat elsewhere. WIND: WNW to NW 5 to 15 knots tending NNE, then NE 10 to 20 knots in the afternoon. Weak SE to ESE change stalls around Byron/ Ballina in the afternoon

Sunday
Slight Northerly windswell and tiny South swell. Far northern NSW: Inconsistent 1 to 2ft+ across south swell magnets, more like 1ft+ or near-flat elsewhere. Southern QLD: Localised NE windswell up to 1ft+ at the most exposed open beaches otherwise tiny to near flat. WIND: Early light WSW to SSW around 5 to 10 knots, tending North to NE 10 to 20 knots in the afternoon.

Far northern NSW will be the focal point of a prevailing south swell over the coming days. Photo: Uploaded to CW by jMcj.

Far northern NSW will be the focal point of a prevailing south swell over the coming days. Photo: Uploaded to CW by jMcj.

Victoria
It’s looking a bit Groundhog Day, but in a good way across the state this weekend. A consistent run of SW groundswell holds enough deepwater energy to refract at a good size along the Surf Coast; for the most part maintaining clean 3 to 4ft sets and occasionally bigger across the premier breaks; groomed by a predominant westerly quarter wind-regime remaining in place a high pressure system migrates slowly eastward over the Great Australian Bight. Initially this sees favourable WNW winds trending WSW on Friday – and similar conditions are anticipated on Saturday. However, as the high advances eastward on Sunday winds will begin to reorient to the south, precipitating an earlier onshore shift during the day.

Friday
Renewed WSW swell under early WNW winds. Around 5 to 6ft+ along the exposed beaches, building in the arvo. Wrapping up to 3 to 4ft+ along the Surf Coast reefs, otherwise smaller elsewhere. WIND: Early WNW 10 to 20 knots, tending West to SW up to 15 to 25 knots in the afternoon.

Saturday
Mid period SW groundswell rebuilds. Ranging from 5 to 8ft along exposed beaches, easing later. Surf Coast: Wrapping at a clean 3 to 5ft along the reefs, otherwise smaller elsewhere. WIND: Westerly 10 to 15 knots, tending WSW to SW during the morning and SSW up to 15 to 20 knots in the afternoon.

Sunday
Easing SW swell under WNW to SW winds. Exposed beaches: Sets around 5 to 6ft+ along exposed beaches, easing in the afternoon. Surf Coast: Sets around 3 to 4ft+ on the reefs, smaller elsewhere and easing later. WIND: Early light Westerly, tending SW to SSW, then Southerly 10 to 15 knots in the afternoon.

The Surf Coast will be offering up some of the better conditions you're likely to find around the continent this weekend. Photo: Judy Scanlon.

The Surf Coast will be offering up some of the better conditions you're likely to find around the continent this weekend. Photo: Judy Scanlon.

Western Australia
There are two good to great mornings lining up across the Southwest in the near-term. A steady run of small to mid-sized SW swell opens up a wide range of good options across the most exposed stretches of coast on Friday and Saturday; the former hampered by a stronger cross-shore SE bias in winds that will take a bit of the shine off conditions. However, Saturday morning is looking pretty dreamy, with light easterlies projected to fade to light and variable as SW swell hangs in at a good size throughout the morning, before eventually giving way to moderate onshore SW winds in the afternoon. That looks like leading in a full day of moderate onshores on Sunday, so make hay while the offshores are in play.

Friday
Reinforcing SW swell fills in. South West: Cross-offshore 3 to 4ft sets exposed breaks, ranging from 2 to 3ft elsewhere and easing in the afternoon. Perth/Mandurah: Around 1ft+. WIND: ESE to SE 15 to 20 knots, tending Southerly, SSE in the arvo.

Saturday
Reinforcing SW groundswell under light offshore winds. Southwest: Clean 3 to 4ft sets along exposed coasts, grading smaller elsewhere with size depending on exposure. Perth: Around 1ft+ exposed beaches. WIND: Easterly 10 to 15 knots, fading to light and variable, then light South, SW around 10 knots in the afternoon.

Sunday
Fading SW swell under southerly winds. Southwest: Slow, wind-affected 2 to 3ft+ sets across exposed coasts, inconsistent in the upper range and deteriorating in the afternoon. Perth: Up to 1ft exposed beaches. WIND: Southerly, SSW 10 to 15 knots, tending SSW to SW and freshening to 15 to 20 knots in the afternoon.

Idyllic conditions open up across the Southwest on Saturday morning. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Pflagg.

Idyllic conditions open up across the Southwest on Saturday morning. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Pflagg.

South Australia
There’s another solid forecast lining up for SA this weekend; again featuring sizeable levels of SW swell – but this time around under predominant onshore winds all weekend. Still, they’re not looking too strong; starting out SSW at about 10 to 15 knots on Saturday, before blowing lighter South to SE on Sunday. That coincides with a consistent run of SW swell, whipped up by a relatively close range SW fetch passing below the state over the next 48 hours. That should translate into a full weekend of 2 to 4ft surf across the Middleton to Goolwa stretch, with more size and power to be had at the more exposed spots.

Friday
SSW swell reinforced by new SW swell. South Coast: Around 3 to 4ft+ at Waits and Parsons, wrapping at 2 to 3ft+ around Middleton to Goolwa. Mid Coast: Around 0.5ft. WIND: Westerly 10 to 15 knots, tending WSW during the morning, then SW to SSW 10 to 20 knots in the afternoon.

Saturday
Scope for renewed SW groundswell under moderate onshore winds. South Coast: Ranging from 4 to 6ft at Waits and Parsons, wrapping at about 3 to 4ft+ across Middleton to Goolwa. Mid Coast: 1 to 2ft. WIND: Southerly, SSE around 5 to 10 knots, freshening to 10 to 15 knots in the arvo.

Sunday
SW swell eases under light winds. South Coast: Sets up to 3 to 5ft around Waits and Parsons, easing in the afternoon. Wrapping up to 2 to 4ft from Middleton to Goolwa. Mid Coast: 0.5 to 1ft. WIND: Early light SSE to SE 5 to 15 knots, tending Southerly in the afternoon.

There's no shortage of sizeable SW swell inbound across SA this weekend. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Angryfish.

There's no shortage of sizeable SW swell inbound across SA this weekend. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Angryfish.


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