South East Queensland and Northern New South Wales Surf Forecast (issued Wednesday 23rd April)

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thermalben started the topic in Wednesday, 23 Apr 2014 at 5:41pm

South East Queensland and Northern New South Wales Surf Forecast by Ben Matson (issued Wednesday 23rd April)

Best Days: No great days. Maybe a small trade swell for the beachies in SE Qld from late Thurs thru' the weekend but nothing great is likely just now. Tues: potentially strong south swell with freshening NW winds. Next Wed/Thurs/Fri: plenty of S'ly swell with W'ly tending SW winds. Also some trade swell in the mix.

Recap: Tiny conditions. 

This week (Apr 24-25)

Not much to finish the working week. Northern NSW will remain tiny on Thursday, and a small south swell will fill in throughout Friday, generated by a southerly change pushing up the southern NSW coast overnight on Thursday. No great size is expected though and only south swell magnets will pull in bumpy 2-3ft waves by the afternoon (probably smaller at dawn, especially north of Coffs) with unfavourable winds from the southern quarter. It’ll be clean but tiny in protected locations.

In SE Qld and across the Far North Coast, we’re looking at a small building east swell during this period, originating from a slight muscling up of the trades south of New Caledonia over the last day or so. No great size is expected however there’s no need to change the numbers from Monday’s estimates - we’re looking at 2ft+ sets across the Sunshine Coast by Friday (smaller Thursday), a little smaller on the Gold Coast and probably not much at all south of about Ballina. 

Winds in SE Qld should be light with sea breezes on Thursday, but the outlook is a little mixed across the models for Friday, as they’re not resolving the position of a northward advancing trough very well. As such the best line of fit right now is to expect a period of light winds early tending fresh SE throughout the day, however there is a chance of a lingering NW breeze early morning.

This weekend (Apr 26-27)

It’s not shaping up to be an overly memorable weekend of surf across the region. The small south swell expected to push along the coast on Friday afternoon should reach exposed south swell magnets of the Far North Coast and SE Qld on Saturday but there won’t be much size in it, just a couple of feet at best. 

This will mix in with a small trade swell of a similar size - the models have pulled back the strength of the trades later this week so I don’t think we’ll see any more size than what’s forecast on Friday (2ft+ tops across SE Qld, smaller south  of the border). Wind wise, we’re on track for an early light and variable  airstream and afternoon sea breezes (tending N’ly in the lower Mid North Coast).

Sunday looks like it’ll see small residual swells from both the south and east, with early NW winds ahead of a fresh S’ly change sweeping along the Northern NSW Coast during the day, probably reaching SE Qld in the afternoon. 

Next week (Apr 28 onwards)

Next week looks very interesting at this stage. First up, we’re not expecting any great swell from the eastern quadrant right now (the trades south of New Caledonia will remain anchored in place, but without any great strength) however a broadening high pressure system east of New Zealand may strengthen the ridge between it and a developing trough of low pressure in and around the eastern Fijian region, which may initially give rise to a slightly more prominent trade swell later next week

They’re also suggesting we may see a more focused system (trough/low) develop in the western part of this region early next week (south of Fiji), which if it eventuates could become a decent source of swell for the East Coast later next week or the following weekend - but this is still a very long time away so we’ll evaluate in more detail on Friday.

Of much greater interest is our southern swell window, which admittedly doesn’t necessarily hold much promise for SE Qld. Still, the charts are looking juicy and with enough forewarning there’s no reason not to be able to snaffle a day off work and plan a road trip south of the border.

Sunday’s slowly advancing southerly change along the Northern NSW Coast will be linked to a deep, intense low pressure system just to the S/SE of Tasmania on Saturday. Current model progs suggest this’ll be quite a beast of a weather system, located right on the western periphery of NSW’s acute south swell window; but the good news is that there’s a general agreement between the models for a N/NE track up into the southern Tasman Sea through the weekend.

This should generate a strong long period south swell that’s currently due to arrive in the Sydney region later Monday ahead of a peak early Tuesday. This should translate to a building trend across Northern NSW on Tuesday. At this stage the exact size and timing requires some elasticity however based on current guidance, I wouldn’t be surprised to see 4-6ft sets at a handful of reliable Northern NSW south swell magnets at the height of the swell on Tuesday (without much size getting in north of the border, unfortunately). Due to the acute southerly swell direction, it'll also be a lot smaller at protected locations.

The current wind outlook for Tuesday is for a freshening NW trend as another system approaches from the west. Let's see how Friday's model data is holding true with this outcome.

Easing southerly swells and gusty W’ly winds are then expected on Wednesday.

Looking further beyond this and another classic winter front/low is expected to cross the Tasmanian region later Tuesday and into Wednesday, which should give us another round of solid south swell for the Northern NSW Coast second half of the week, with moderate to fresh SW winds accompanying. We’ll take a closer look at the longer term outlook in Friday’s notes. 

dromodreamer05's picture
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dromodreamer05 commented Wednesday, 23 Apr 2014 at 10:25pm

I guess this may not be the place to discuss but can anyone have a go and give me any hopes for the monsoon or any tropical activity this season, like the sunshine coast is now just the suffering coast with 2ft gutless gutter balls right? I thought whoever said Noosa wouldn't break again this year was joking : (

Sheepdog's picture
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Sheepdog commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 7:57am

Dromo, the "monsoon season" is in its death throes, mate... Time to start looking at the sunny coast breaks that like a bit of south in the swell.... There's a beachy out past granite if you like walking...... And another just south of Noosa.....And the whole stretch of coast from there all the way to the airport..... Nothing wrong with crisp autumn beachys..... If you look hard enough, you'll find an uncrowded peak and probably have more fun surfing it with a couple of mates than you would surfing 4 foot noosa with 200 people......

Sheepdog

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 8:06am

W'lies past Anzac Day make the mullet move. Bull shark alert at NENSW river mouths.

Bob's 2 Bob's's picture
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Bob's 2 Bob's commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 8:44am

I might head that way for a fish, live baiting of course.

Freeload69

mitchvg's picture
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mitchvg commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 2:10pm

thermalben wrote:

Winds in SE Qld should be light with sea breezes on Thursday, but the outlook is a little mixed across the models for Friday, as they’re not resolving the position of a northward advancing trough very well. As such the best line of fit right now is to expect a period of light winds early tending fresh SE throughout the day, however there is a chance of a lingering NW breeze early morning.

Is the "fresh SE throughout the day" a result of the trough moving nth or ridge/trades restrengthening? BoM doesn't think the S'ly change will make it into qld

mitchvg's picture
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mitchvg commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 2:14pm

In other words, I'm not timing my session based on wind obs of the frontal progression down the coast. Is that a wise choice? Cheers.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 2:20pm

BOM Gold Coast Waters have (for Friday) "Variable about 10 knots becoming southeasterly 15 to 20 knots in the morning" (which is identical to my notes). As for the source, it's a bit of both as they're not particularly strong systems (the southerly change will probably stall on the Mid North Coast, however the trades won't restrengthen a great deal in close proximity ot the coast). Won't be very long-lived either; winds will ease for Saturday.

thermalben's picture
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thermalben commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 2:21pm

mitchvg wrote: In other words, I'm not timing my session based on wind obs of the frontal progression down the coast. Is that a wise choice? Cheers.
Spot on.
mitchvg's picture
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mitchvg commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 5:06pm

ok thanks

tobym's picture
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tobym commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 6:49pm

I'm working the outside Reefs off Makay next week any chance of a small NE swell any one reckon.maybe off that Solomons depression?

Sheepdog's picture
Sheepdog's picture
Sheepdog commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 7:13pm

Nah, Toby.... But if you lead a mutiny, and steam for New Cal....... Wow!!!!!!! South swell......

Sheepdog

tobym's picture
tobym's picture
tobym commented Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 at 7:30pm

yea no chance of that,punters work for the Government.Suprised We don;t here more about our French Island over there,never been there,but their right in the firing line no doubt!

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Friday, 25 Apr 2014 at 11:42am

Geezus it is autumn yeah? Other than early-mid next week for a fleeting pulse of S'ly swell surely we can't have over 2 weeks (this week just gone and next week and early into the following week) of sweet FA swell in Autumn!!!