Northern NSW and South East Queensland Forecast by Craig Brokensha (issued Wednesday 4th December)
Best Days: Early Thursday, Saturday morning, Sunday morning, Monday morning
A large and powerful E/SE groundswell arrived with a bang across the North Coast yesterday morning, coming in at a large 6ft+ across exposed spots, a lot bigger and earlier than anticipated. I underestimated the fetch of strengthening E/SE gales on an already active sea state and westward push of the low. Morning offshores created great waves across most spots until a fresh S/SE'ly limited the best waves to protected bays and points. The Goldy saw less of an increase but still good 2-3ft waves across most open beaches and bigger sets at exposed spots.
The swell eased back overnight back from 3-5ft on the North Coast, but the Goldy and Sunny Coast were still offering plenty of size with light offshore winds. Fresh N/NE sea breezes are now in, limiting the best waves to protected northern corners with an easing swell.
This week (Dec 4 – Dec 6)
The low responsible for yesterday's and today's E/SE swell weakened through Monday evening and further Tuesday and as a result we'll see the E/SE swell continuing to ease through tomorrow.
Open beaches should still be in the 2ft to occasionally 3ft range early (smaller on the Goldy and Sunny Coast) before easing into the afternoon as a larger NE windswell builds. Accordingly winds will strengthen from the N'th during the day so get in early.
A fresh SW change is due Friday with the NE swell expected to ease rapidly from 1-2ft, ahead of a late increase in S'ly swell.
This weekend (Dec 7 onwards)
A strong cold-outbreak will move into the Southern Tasman Sea on Friday with an initial fetch of strong to gale-force S/SW winds expected to be generated in our swell window. This should generate a strong pulse of S'ly swell Saturday.
Of greater importance is the stalling nature of the low Friday afternoon and evening east of Tassie, with a fetch of gale to severe-gale S/SW winds expected to be generated in our southern swell window (pictured right).
This will generate a strong pulse of S'ly groundswell for Sunday that will peak during the morning. Winds will be great for locations picking up the most size with a light NW tending fresh NE breeze, and the Goldy won't pick up too much of this swell at all.
Heading into next week the S'ly swell will ease and there's nothing too major on the cards for the rest of the week, but we'll review this again on Friday.
Craig, I note that EC has a much different prognosis for the Southern Tasman Sea/Southern Ocean low pressure system late Thursday and all the way into late Friday compared with GFS. So are you swinging GFS's way at present, or just reporting what your model outputs are forecasting which uses GFS as it's key input weather?
Sorry, forgot to add in that disclaimer like I did in the Sydney notes. I was cautious this morning, but with 18z sticking with it I think we'll see something in between GFS and EC.
Also I didn't have sizes as I think it will be a touch under what's currently forecast. 00z update at around 5pm this evening will be good to confirm.