Monday, May 31, 2010


1.9 at 10 from 300 and 0.9 at 14 from 170 - that about says all you need to know about surf conditions today. Plus we have onshore winds/fog - not a good day for surfing anywhere. Look for surf to slowly pick up from the nw as the week moves on - with shots of nw/wnw swell from 280-290 starting Tuesday and continuing through next weekend. We could see some chest to overhead waves late in the week. Look for a run of sw swell from 195-210 starting around Tuesday and continuing through Saturday. Look for waist to chest high sets at the best south facing breaks. Look for winds from the sw/w all week. Maybe lighter in the mornings near shore. Weather models are hinting at rain north of the Golden Gate late in the week as well. We'll see if that comes to pass. Surf early and keep an eye on the winds. cya in the water.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Weekend Forecast

Small mix of nw and sw swells will continue thru the holiday weekend. Winds might be light offshore Saturday morning but then look for more onshore flow by Sunday and very likely Monday as fog returns. The rain is over for now and weather looks nice for next few days. Models are actually hinting at more rain around June 7-10 we'll see if that holds. It would be most unusual. Probably look for waist to head high waves this weekend - just keep an eye on the winds. Early next week we'll see an increase in sizable nw swells and more energy from the south. More on that Monday. Cya in the water.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Updating south swell

Well depending on what part of the coast you're on today - dictates whether or not you score. By summer standards - super long period/large s swell is filling in - the offshore buoys don't lie - I saw some readings in the 8-9 ft at 20 sec and most recently Pt Reyes with a whopping 11ft at 20 sec - that is one significant southern hemi. The problem is the winds - howling all the way down the length of the CA Coast - and i think knocking the stuffing out of this swell as it wraps ashore. Much of the energy appears to be bypassing the coast too. Looking at Malibu and Santa Cruz cams - large sets for sure. I surfed a south facing break in Marin this am - and we had some head high/overhead sets early - but things slowed down as the tide dropped and wind came up. Look for this swell to stick around Monday, probably into Tuesday too - with size and period slowly winding down. My call would be to play hooky Monday AM and hit it early before work and the winds come up. We have a few more weather systems bringing us a chance of rain all next week - Tuesday thru Thursday. No gully washers, but perhaps more rain then we had last week. Winds will continue to be an issue with hard blows from the nw with sporadic south/southwest wind events as storms come ashore. It's really a shame we had all this nw wind because i think this south swell would have been one for the ages! Oh well - get what you can and be happy. Water is frigid - where as much rubber as you can muster. cya in the water.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Weekend Forecast

Actually a nice day, cept for the gale force nw winds offshore and cool temps. Dont get too comfy with all that sunshine. Swell tonight is 7-8 at 11 from 320 and 1.7 at 17 from 180. Big swell actually peaked overnight and during the morning - buoy readings off Oregon were most impressive for a short time for the time of year - 20-30ft. Look for steady shots of nw windswell thru Sunday - overhead at nw facing breaks, much smaller at south facing breaks as the shorter period won't wrap in as well. Steady nw winds look the rule for the next few days. We have the southern edge of a storm clipping the north bay tomorrow afternoon/evening - and then another potential shot of very light rain on Saturday. Cool temps, breezy, clouds, etc look likely for most of the weekend. As for our incoming southern hemi - look for long period forerunners probably late Saturday afternoon. On Sunday and Monday - models indicate we could at time see south sets overhead by a couple feet at the best south facing breaks. I'm still a bit concerned about all the nw wind knocking the piss out of this swell coming up the Coast - however it's a pretty powerful swell so hopefully much of the energy will make it through. Seems reasonable we'll see some solid head high sets for sure at south facing breaks. Water temps are frigid - feel even colder with the wind. Averaging 48-51 degrees right now. So i think we'll certainly have some waves to ride this coming weekend - especially on Sunday. cya in the water.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

More storms, wind, rain, swell....

***UPDATE 9PM - Small NW filling in at almost 3 ft 14 at 300 - also small S at 2 ft 17 at 180. Nice little mix. Not sure where this NW came from as it wasn't on the charts at all - but given storm activity to our north, not completely surprising. Winds coming on strong out of the northwest - nothing good can come from that! HUGE swell hitting outer Oregon Buoys - saw some readings in the 30ft at 14 sec range - that's freaking huge for May. I think the incoming swell for Friday (see below) may be way under called size wise - given the readings up north. I'll keep an eye on it and you can probably expect me to upgrade the size for the weekend.

From earlier today> They're running the Quicksilver Big Wave Invitational right now in Chile - in what looks like pretty solid 12-15ft surf - that's our south swell for this coming weekend and into the following week. I think the swell will start to show up here on Sunday - with 3-4 ft 21 sec energy from 185-195. Period will drop to 16 seconds on Sunday and Monday with size staying about the same 3-4ft (deepwater). At the same time, a late season, fairly powerful (but close to us) low pressure system in the gulf is kicking up mid period windswell/swell from around 306 - 9-10ft at around 11, maybe 12 seconds. Look for the nw swell to actually start showing Thursday and continue thru Monday. Weather going to remain a big issue. We have light winds this morning - but winds are forecast to really blow out of the NW starting Thursday right on through the weekend. Very brisk, cool temperatures are forecast as well - in fact we have potentially some frost possible late in the weekend in the north bay valleys - as overnight lows will be quite chilly for May. The weather stays cool and very unsettled through middle of next week - as low pressure remains parked in the gulf rotating energy through the central/north coast giving us some rain later today and then again possible on and off through Sunday. It remains a challenge to work on your boardshort tan for those south of the border adventures you have planned this summer. Should be plenty of surf to ride starting about Friday - it's just going to require some good local knowledge on what breaks work best. cya in the water.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Decent NW on Friday, followed by strong SW swell

Winter May. Storm pushing ashore today with light rain expected on most of the north/central coast. Wind is out of the south and buoys are pretty small with the last remains of our current sw swell showing - 2-3ft at 14 sec or so. Look for cool, breezy weather through next weekend - with another chance of light rain on Wednesday and again by Sunday. We're almost a month from the summer equinox - but the north pacific jetstream is still very active. Next up for us - is a very late season shot of NW swell - due in Friday. Right now looking at 9-10ft at 13sec from 295 on Friday with 8-9 at 13sec on Saturday. We have a couple SW swells due in around the same time - the first will probably go unnoticed at 2-3ft from 204 - but the second pulse which starts to show on Sunday - could come in around 3-4 at 17 and hang around through Tuesday. Should see long period runners of this swell during the day on Saturday in the 21 sec band. Given the larger NW in the water - you'll probably only notice the SW pulses at south facing breaks. Winds dont look that great all week with WNW to NW forecast between 9kt and 20kt - probably stronger offshore. Best bet is to surf early as that's when you have the best chance of lighter winds given the time of year. Or hit the south facing spots - they should be protected from that wind direction. So get some work done and hopefully we can feast from Friday through next Tuesday. cya in the water.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Update on south swell for this weekend...

I'm underwhelmed based on buoy data to our south this morning. Granted, it's early - but i'd like to be seeing some bigger readings already. This might be one of those where the models were overly optimistic. The long periods are there - but showing 2-2.7 or so off So Cal. So it will be interesting to see how much we get starting tomorrow. Swell will fill in late tonight. We also have a very small mid period (10sec) NW swell filtering in - very small. Perhaps the cross up on the two will help. Winds aren't great - SW - as the fog as established itself at the coast and pushing inland. Look for that all weekend with cool temps at the immediate coast. Winds are lighter the further south you go (south of Ocean Beach) - so it might not all be a wash. Rain Monday - then back to status quo. Interestingly, NO heat wave in sight - and we're going to be to June very soon. While El Nino is gone - the atmosphere is still being influenced by how strong this event was.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Upcoming South Swells.....Large swell possible May 22-25

Tracking a south swell due in this weekend. Should see long period stuff late Friday - 2-3 at 19/184-190 - continuing thru the weekend with period at 19 sec on Saturday, dropping to 17 sec on Sunday. Based on models - at it's peak it will show 3ft of deepwater swell with the main period band 19-17 secs. Not a bad little south. Things get far more interesting the following weekend - May 22 thru May 25 - as a major storm now flaring up is forecast to kick up a very significant swell for that time period. Models right now are hinting at 5-6ft of deepwater swell with periods from 23 sec to 17 sec through the event. This would be a pretty significant swell for the whole CA coast if it comes in as forecast. We're still early days on it - the storm is just getting started - but models are getting pretty consistent run to run already with the size and period. I'll dial this one in early to mid next week. As for winds coming up this weekend - looking for light West winds Sat/Sun mornings - if we're lucky - light enough to not mess things up. With variable winds on Monday morning. We have some push of NW wind offshore through the rest of this week (but not that strong) - this will keep the swell decay to a minimum as this south comes up the coast. This is a good thing. Water temps are still cool - 48-50deg. Temps could moderate a bit towards the weekend if we get a few days of west/onshore wind. cya in the water.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Glimmer of hope.....

7-12 ft 10-11 second windswell from around 300 in the water today. Winds have come up strongly out of the NW as forecast. Could be something at the sheltered breaks over the next day or so as this windswell will continue and a new WNW mid period swell starts to fill in Wed/Thurs. For the weekend coming - still tracking this sw swell event - which looks to be around Saturday to Monday. Right now I'm thinking deepwater swell in the 2-3 ft range - with longer periods. Winds are basically forecast to blow NW at the buoys the rest of the week (perhaps a bit lighter nearshore in the mornings) and then turn a bit more westerly or even southwesterly for the weekend. Most of our coast hates sw winds - so we'll see just how strong they come up. If we're lucky, they might be light enough for morning sessions this weekend - and at least not terminate the sw swell coming up offshore. A bigger/stronger sw swell event looks possible towards the week of 5-24. More on timing/size for that - mid to late next week. So, don't give up all hope just yet - well, it might rain again next Monday - before then we have some nice sunny days ahead and quite possibly you just might find something to ride at your favorite spot. cya in the water.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Pinch me, i think we're in Florida....

I woke up this am - hopeful I might get wet. I checked a few cams in the area and had to shake my head a couple times - SO flat, in fact so flat I thought the cam had malfunctioned and I was looking at South Beach, FLA. It's small, it's windy and to top it off it's raining. In fact, we have more rain coming for Monday - as the models did a really crap job of handling these two very late season storms. Storm #2 will give us rising windswell for Tues/Wed/Thurs - the steep angle/short period variety we love so much - like 9-10 ft at 9 sec from 320 + - killer. Down under - some storm action that will kick us up some SW swell late next weekend into the following week. Hope we get a break in the winds so these swells can make it around Pt Conception and give us something to ride. Between now and then - not much except the windswell next week - so get what you can when you can. cya on the golf course.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Weekend Forecast: Sleep in.

More dribble for the weekend. Smallish sw swell peaking today at 2.5 at 17 sec - might still be some sets Saturday morning at south facing breaks - otherwise - not much else in the water forecast. Minimal windswell and no swell of merit from any source in the north pacific. The north pac has gone asleep for the spring/summer season. Two storms which showed promise for Sunday and early next week are falling apart - and i dont expect any swell to develop from either. Longer range looking better for a run of sw swells - mid month and beyond - but between now and then there wont be much to surf. And to make it worse - we'll have nw winds on the rise again next week. Watching the perfect little waves pouring into Trestles this am for the Nike 6.0 pro REALLY got me depressed. But i had perfect 1ft Bolinas (desperation surf) to myself yesterday afternoon - so take that you So Cal types! cya in the water.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

It's bleak my friends......

Ugly: 6.3 at 9 sec/from 330 and 0.6 at 14sec/from 170. Forecasts called for a southwest swell to show up later this week - but i think the relentless north winds offshore are going to kill that one on arrival. Right now I'm not seeing anything on the charts until possibly around May 14-17 when a better pulse of SW swell is due. Could see an increase in nw swell/windswell by Monday/Tuesday - but nothing to get all excited about. We do have a couple storms once again forecast - one to drop in here late this weekend and possibly give us showers. Then on Tuesday, another storm slides through - although models are starting to push this one off to the north and east. Our only hope is to surf early - and maybe catch a break at the NW facing breaks before the wind machine gets going. Water temp is pretty cold - 48 degrees. I wish i could paint a better picture - but it's spring in Nor Cal. cya on the golf course.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Dirk Denny Memorial Fund

A very touching and inspired paddle out yesterday morning for Dirk Denny at Drakes. A couple hundred surfers of all ages, shapes, sizes out to pay their respects to Dirk and his family. It was a beautiful morning as everyone braved the strong winds and very cold waters. Rest in peace Dirk.

A Memorial fund has been set up:

Help support Dirk's wife and two daughters by donating to "The Dirk Denny Memorial Fund" at:

I'll update the forecast later.