Weekend Surf Forecast 9 - 11 August 2019

8 Aug 2019 0 Share

Ben Macartney

Chief Surf Forecaster

Issued Thursday, 8 August 2019

Just when you thought that spring might arrive early, winter conditions are already making a strong return. The culprit is a large, complex polar low currently developing over the Great Australian Bight. The storm is already generating cold, blustery conditions across the southern states and it’s set to wreak further havoc as it consolidates over Tasmania and the southern Tasman Sea on Friday and Saturday. The storm brings all major of steep rising surf and strong - not to mention freezing onshore winds to South Australia and Victoria for several days, before extending its influence to the NSW coast as it extends below Tasmania and across the southern Tasman Sea this weekend.

The storm’s impact will, for the most part, cancel out surfing options across the southern states; generating gale force west to south-westerly winds that will write off conditions across exposed Victorian and South Australian coasts. That will leave semi-sheltered areas like the Surf Coast as the only viable surfing options – and even these locations will become heavily windblown as the low moves through.

In stark contrast, strong westerly winds being fuelled by the storm lead in flat conditions across the NSW coast on Friday, with minimal potential for some refracted SSW energy spreading up the coast on Saturday. It won’t be until Sunday that we’re more likely to see wave energy rebuilding in response to the developing low, leading in a much stronger increase in south and SSE swell across the region early to mid next week. The upshot for southern Queensland is a flat spell lasting all weekend.  Last but not least, the West Coast is well removed from the ensuing chaos further east; benefiting from a large, slow moving high pressure system drifting across the south of the state, opening up a few great days featuring offshore winds and slow-easing SW swell.

Cold, windy conditions prevail around much of the country this weekend, with better days in store early to mid next week.

Cold, windy conditions prevail around much of the country this weekend, with better days in store early to mid next week.

Sydney, Newcastle and the South Coast
In the wake of another excellent working week of surf, the last of our long-enduring SSE swell will conks out on Friday; ironed flat by a strong westerly airflow setting up to 20 to 35 knots. It’s now looking like a large, complex low developing over the southern Tasman Sea will continue to suppress surf-potential via a continuation of strong westerlies on Saturday, with limited chances for a small, directional pulse of south swell showing in the 2ft range across southern exposures (this will become clearer in Friday’s update). Otherwise it won’t be until Sunday that we’re more likely to see a building trend in southerly swell setting in across the region. However, based on persistent variance between the key models, there’s still a pretty big question mark hanging over the size and timing of any increase – so stay tuned for clarification on this in Friday’s update.

Friday
Virtually flat. Slight Southerly swell under strong offshore winds up to 1ft across south facing breaks, grading to tiny/ flat elsewhere. WIND: WNW, Westerly 20 to 35 knots.

Saturday
Slight pulse of directional South swell. Slow sets ranging from 1 to 2ft+ across south facing breaks, otherwise 1ft to near-flat along open beaches owing to a deepwater SSW swell direction. WIND: WNW, Westerly, 15 to 30 knots, freshening in the afternoon.

Sunday
Potential building trend in Southerly swell. Speculatively 2 to 3ft+ south facing beaches, increasing to 3 to 4ft+ during the day. Wrapping at lower levels elsewhere with size depending on exposure. Revisions likely. WIND: Westerly 20 to 30 knots, tending WSW in the afternoon.


Flat conditions set in for at least a couple of days and it probably won't be until early next week that a large south swell will result from the developing low. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Sprucey.

Flat conditions set in for at least a couple of days and it probably won't be until early next week that a large south swell will result from the developing low. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Sprucey.

Queensland and Far Northern NSW
Across southern Queensland coasts it’s shaping up as a great weekend to do just about anything other than surf this weekend. Whether it’s fixing dings, doing your tax, catching up on work or just sleeping in – they are all looking six foot and offshore compared to the flat sea-state prevailing across the region over the next few days. Only the most exposed stretches south of the border are likely to be pulling in a very small wave; for the most part not exceeding a slow 1 to 2ft max – at least until a new round of South-swell kicks into gear early next week.

Friday
Residual Southerly swell hangs in at tiny levels. Far northern NSW: Up to 1 to 2ft across south facing breaks, grading to 1ft or near-flat along open beaches. Southern QLD: Up to a slow 1ft, along exposed beaches, otherwise virtually flat. WIND: WNW to NW 5 to 10 knots, freshening to 10 to 15 knots.

Saturday
Virtually flat. Chances for a slight uptick in directional South swell across Northern NSW towards 1 to 2ft+ in the afternoon, otherwise flat elsewhere. WIND: WNW 5 to 15 knots, tending Westerly and freshening to 15 to 25 knots later.

Sunday
Virtually flat under strong westerly winds. Far northern NSW: chances for slight, directional South swell up to 1 to 2ft across south facing breaks, near-flat elsewhere. Southern QLD: Flat. WIND: WNW, Westerly 15 to 25 knots, tending WSW during the late afternoon.

You'll be dreaming of better days as a flat spell sets in across the region this weekend. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Dutzi.

You'll be dreaming of better days as a flat spell sets in across the region this weekend. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Dutzi.

Victoria
The prospect of surfing across Victoria over the next 24 hours isn’t looking like a particularly one. The gradual consolidation of large, complex Southern Ocean low inside Victorian longitudes over the next 48 hours will heavily limit surfable options across the state; initially to the Surf Coast as winds hit 30 to 50 knots on Friday. Saturday morning looks like offering up another limited window of opportunity across the Surf Coast – but it will quickly close as winds turn strong southwest during the morning. That looks like leading in a full day of strong onshore SSW winds in the order of 20 to 30 knots statewide on Sunday, so it’s probably worth planning for a few lay-days.

Friday
Combination of mid-period WSW and short range SW swells around 3 to 5ft along exposed beaches, picking up to 4 to 6ft later. Wrapping at 2 to 4ft along the Surf Coast reefs, rising throughout the afternoon. WIND: Westerly 20 to 40 knots early, easing to 20 to 30 knots during the day and 15 to 25 knots in the afternoon.

Saturday
Potential for large, raw SW swell filling in throughout the day. Sets around 5 to 6ft+ along exposed beaches, speculatively rising to a stormy 6 to 8ft+ in the arvo. Wrapping at 3 to 4ft+ along the Surf Coast reefs and rising to a windblown 4 to 6ft+ during the afternoon. Revisions likely. WIND: Westerly inshore early, otherwise SW to WSW 20 to 30 knots, freshening in the afternoon.

Sunday
Potential for large and stormy SSW swell slowly easing under southwest winds. Ranging from a windblown 6 to 8ft+ along exposed beaches, settling to 5 to 7ft in the afternoon. Wrapping at 5 to 7ft along the Surf Coast reefs, easing a foot or two in the arvo. WIND: SSW 20 to 30 knots or more, easing in the afternoon.

The Surf Coast will be one of the only regions offering up some surfable options across Victoria this weekend. Photo: Judy Scanlon.

The Surf Coast will be one of the only regions offering up some surfable options across Victoria this weekend. Photo: Judy Scanlon.

Western Australia
Surfing gets the thumbs up over the next few days as winds finally swing in our favour; turning light SSE to SE early on Friday, before swinging straight offshore by Saturday morning. The favourable wind-shift coincides with a slow decline in SW/SSW swell that will progressively open up good to great options across fully exposed Southwest breaks. Saturday morning is shaping up as the pick for size and quality, before wave energy declines to some of the lowest levels seen so far across the region this winter; around 2 to 3ft by Sunday morning under offshore ENE to NE winds.

Friday
Leftover SW groundswell drops off under early cross-offshore winds, reinforced by a late SSW pulse in the afternoon. South West: Semi-clean 5 to 8ft sets across exposed coasts, settling to 4 to 6ft+ in the afternoon. Perth/Mandurah: Around 2ft+. WIND: SSE 10 to 15 knots, tending Southerly, SSW in the afternoon, back to the SSE in the evening.

Saturday
SSW groundswell gradually eases. Southwest: Windy 3 to 5ft along exposed breaks, settling to 3 to 4ft in the afternoon. Perth: 1 to 2ft. WIND: ENE, 10 to 15 knots, possibly turning NE during the afternoon.

Sunday
Leftover SW swell bottoms out under moderate offshore winds. Southwest: Sets up to 2 to 3ft across exposed coasts, fading in the afternoon, grading smaller elsewhere with size depending on exposure. Perth: Around 0.5ft, flattening out later. WIND: ENE 10 to 20 knots tending NE to NNE later.

The Southwest lights up under an easing SW swell and easterly winds this weekend. Photo: Dev Coote.

The Southwest lights up under an easing SW swell and easterly winds this weekend. Photo: Dev Coote.

South Australia
Surfing options are pretty much written off by howling on shore winds driving a large and stormy SW swell across the region; showing monstrous size across the more exposed coasts, while wrapping into Middleton and surrounds at still large and energetic levels for several days. Probably best to plan for a string of lay-days before conditions come good on Tuesday and Wednesday next week.

Friday
Potential for large and stormy SW swell under strong onshore winds. South Coast: Up to 8 to 10ft+ around Waits and Parsons, wrapping at 4 to 6ft+ around Middleton,. Mid Coast: Around 2 to 3ft, fading later. WIND: WSW to SW 20 to 30 knots, freshening in the evening.

Saturday
Settling SSW groundswell under easing wind. South Coast: easing 6 to 8ft+ sets at Waits and Parsons early, grading to 4 to 5ft+ at Middleton. Mid Coast: Around 1 to 2ft. WIND: SW to SSW 20 to 30 knots.

Sunday
Scope for reinforcing SSW swell, slowly easing. South Coast: Junky 5 to 6ft+ at Waits and Parsons, wrapping sets 3 to 5ft+ at Middleton. Mid Coast: 1ft+. WIND: SSW 15 to 25 knots, easing to 10 to 20 knots later.

It won't be until mid-next week that strong onshore winds finally relent across SA. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Glasso.

It won't be until mid-next week that strong onshore winds finally relent across SA. Photo: Uploaded to CW by Glasso.


Tags: Weekend Surf Forecast , Ben Macartney (create Alert from these tags)

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