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Forecaster Report

Southern California

Report Date & Time: October 23, 2014 7:30 AM
By forecaster: Nathan Cool
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Surf Synopsis
Today (Thursday) we have mostly moderate NW ground swell in SoCal. No major change is expected through Saturday. Sunday the 26th should see an increase as a fairly sizable (yet short period) NW swell builds into SoCal. A small NW swell is being tracked for Thursday the 30th. A potentially sizable NNW swell is being tracked for the 1st, but with questionable conditions by then. Condition-wise: warm weather over the next couple days then cools for the weekend; rain chances are on the horizon; light winds now shift this weekend; the tide is swinging wide; and water temps are fair.

Early this morning, periods were running 12 seconds from 305°.

Most west facing breaks were running chest high. Direct south facing breaks were running waist high.


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Swell Forecast and Schedule
Buoys in the outer waters are down from the impressive readings a couple days ago, but are still hovering around 8'. Northern buoys are also running 8-10', showing NW swell will linger to a lesser degree over the next day or so. Nearshore buoys around SoCal showed combined seas at 2.7-3.4' with NW energy being nearly all of that.

The tide is swinging wide this week from a New Moon that crests at 2:56 PM today. Today we have a 5.8' high around 9:20 AM, a 0.1' low around 4:00 PM, and a 4.5' high around 10:00 PM.

Water temps were running 68-70 in most of SoCal.

Swell-wise: Today we're seeing remnants of the Aleutian swell that hit the SoCal coast Tuesday. This, with minor activity from the Aleutians/Gulf should keep conditions and size pretty much the same Friday the 24th and Saturday the 25th.

Sunday the 26th is looking at an increase in NW swell. Models converged today on a system breaking off the Aleutian Chain that, riding the jetstream/swell-track, will dive southeast, making a beeline for the NCal coast. With 20' seas when just 500 nautical miles off the west coast (centered just north of San Fran), SoCal should see swell from around 290° with size reaching head high to 2' overhead at west facing breaks. Periods should run about 12-14 seconds max as this swell doesn't have impressive seas (for a northern hemi ground swell), but actually does when considering its proximity to our area. Swell will likely be consistent, and the low pressure system associated with this should increase the onshore flow in SoCal (rain is expected to stay to the north).

As for ETA on Sunday: NW swell should fill in from north to south, reaching VC/SB early in the AM, early to mid AM in LA, then mid to late AM in OC and then SD.

This NW swell should linger to a lesser degree Monday the 27th, and then back down Tuesday the 28th.

While south facing breaks will see NW wrap from this swell, they should also see waist high southern hemi from a system that recently formed near Easter Island. This swell should arrive in SoCal Sunday the 26th, angled from about 180-190° with 16-second periods, peaking Monday the 27th with waist+ waves at south facing breaks. NW wrap will likely be greater though.

Thursday the 30th should see our next NW swell, but that's not saying much, perhaps waist high from a small-ish system drifting across the mid-Gulf latitudes in a few days.

Saturday the 1st however could see a sizable increase in NNW swell in SoCal. This according to the super extended, 180h models, would be a 30' fetch dropping south from the Gulf, bringing possibly 310° (or greater angled) swell. Being such a steep angle, much of this would skirt past SoCal. Still, we could see something around the head high range, but it's way too early to make that call today (based on 180 hour models with a close proximity to the west coast). Note that weather could also be affected as models show a big ole blob of precip in the front ahead of this system driving south along the west coast. I'll keep an eye on it and keep you posted.


Here's how the day-to-day is breaking down so far:

Friday the 24th looks about chest high at west facing breaks.

Saturday the 25th should run chest max at west facing breaks.

Sunday the 26th is expected to see NW swell fill in from north to south, peaking at head high to 2' overhead at west facing breaks. ETA is for VC/SB early AM, early to mid AM in LA, and mid to late AM in OC and SD.

Monday the 27th is expected to run head high max at west facing breaks.

Tuesday the 28th looks about waist to chest at west facing breaks.

Wednesday the 29th looks smaller, about waist max at west facing breaks.

Thursday the 30th should run waist high at west facing breaks.

Friday the 31st also looks about waist high right now.

Saturday the 1st could see a significant increase in NNW swell...according to the extended long range models today...more on that in my next report...


Weather Outlook
It's an interesting day on the weather models. Today and Friday benefit from high pressure over the west with beaches reaching the upper 70s with little to no AM marine layer and light offshore flow. A low passes just to the north of SoCal this weekend, increasing the onshore effect, but with rain staying north of Pt. Conception. Saturday should see a notable return of AM marine layer, mid to late AM burn-off, and max beach temps in the upper 60s. Sunday could be a tad cooler. Once the low passes Monday, a weak ridge of high pressure should keep beaches right around 70 Monday through Wednesday, possibly Thursday as well, with early AM burn-offs. The long range models then show a low dropping south along the west coast with a heavy rainband in its front. If this low drops far enough south we could see rain late Friday the 31st into the first weekend of November. This though is based on the super extended long range models today.


Wind Outlook
Winds at 7:00 AM were light to calm most everywhere with a slight offshore effect. Afternoon onshores are expected to reach 8-12 mph. Friday is looking at light offshores in the AM, and then onshore in the afternoon 6-11 mph. Saturday should see the return of an onshore flow with light and variables early and afternoon onshores to 15 mph. Sunday looks similar.


Until my next report (Sunday), take care, be safe, and smile in the lineup!


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