Good news…the Pacific—both North and South—are kicking out some storms…and over the next week or so we can expect energy from both Hemispheres to set up surf all over the place.
The springtime pattern for the North Pacific continues to give sort of weird shapes to the latest round of storm action. Again the high-pressure continues to dominate most of the mid-latitude storm track, but it is still leaving a little room around the edges for some swell-generation to take place.
Hawaii, the Pacific NW, and Northern/Central California are really the only regions that are going to see significant swell over the next week or so. There are a series of fast moving storms that are setting up over by Japan and pushing toward the Western Aleutians while setting up fetch for Hawaii. None of these are particularly large (just brushing the advisory level)…but they do keep some swell moving through the North shores through the middle of the week.
These storms, after sending waves to Hawaii have been finding some soft spots in the high-pressure up in the Gulf of Alaska which has been letting the lows move off the of the Aleutians and back into open water. Unfortunately for those of us that live in SoCal, most of the action is taking place too close to the Pacific NW which puts the energy at a much too steep of a swell angle to make it around Point Conception…but it is able to send swell to almost all of the coast north of the Southern California Bight.
SoCal did get one little storm front that just passed over us that had some spent a little time in our swell window. The lump of W-NW storm/windswell that it built up will peak early on Tuesday and then fade out fast by midweek. From there on out it looks like mostly NW windswell all the way up to next weekend. The long-range charts are showing another similar storm forming later this week…that, if the forecasts come true, will send a pretty similar sized swell (with more wet weather) into SoCal and the California Central Coast by late in the upcoming weekend (April 17-18th).
The South Pacific
As the seasons switch the SPAC is starting to get quite lively…there have already been a couple of decent S-SW swells that have pushed up for both Hawaii and the West Coast (setting up a supersize SSW swell for Tahiti in mid-March in the process). The Southern Hemi "Fall" Pattern is still ramping things up and already has a couple of swells in the water for this week, and a potentially bigger one forming way out on the end of the forecast.
Unfortunately for Hawaii the last round of storms have been more "zonal" in their formation and movement, which means that the storm has more of a west-to-east shape and movement, this isn't as much of a problem for the West Coast since it's swell window extends down below New Zealand, which allows storms to start setting up fetch while it is still below Australia. Hawaii on the other hand needs a storm to take a better movement path with a more defined South-to-North fetch for a significant swell to form up. Basically that was a really long winded way of saying that Hawaii will only get a few minor pulses of S swell for the next few days.
The West Coast, Mexico, Tahiti, and Central America on the other hand are going to see a series of overlapping S-SW swells over the next few days. Nothing in the water is super large…but the overall stream of swell-energy is pretty nice…it means that even though it won't be huge, there will be something to ride in all of those regions for the next week or two…probably all the way through the end of April.
The guy that I am starting to get interested in is this storm that is showing way out on the charts:
It is already a large and pretty intense storm underneath Australia (sending waves and weather all over Southern OZ)…and it is forecast to stay pretty well together as it moves into the Tasman Sea and eventually the open South Pacific. If anything it will likely get a good infusion of extra-tropical energy as it moves into the Tasman Sea that could really help supercharge the low. Into something like this:
Fiji and Tahiti look like they would see the brunt of the energy from this system (they are a hell of a lot closer) but if things line up well, all the rest of the regions would get some nice playful waves from this one as well. Since the storm is still about a week from forming, which is the weather model world is about as far out as a forecast can go with even some semblance of accuracy, it is a little early to commit to wave heights…but from an arrival time standpoint Fiji would see the swell around the 21-22nd, Tahiti around the 22-23rd…and the West Coast (including Mex and Central America) would see it pulse in with some initial energy around the 25th but the guts of the swell really hitting more on the 28-29th. So we have some time…(just great, I hate waiting.) Cross your fingers that it will stay on track through the next several days.
That is it for now…next forecast will be on Friday, check back in and see how that SPAC storm is doing!
TransWorld SURF Forecaster