Forecast Update: Lexus Pipe Pro
Lexus Pipe Pro
January 29th - February 10th, 2024
The waiting period for the Pipe Pro kicked off today but the contest went straight into a lay day. This was unfortunate as a new mid-period west-northwest swell made landfall, however it was being torn up by persistent south-west (Kona) winds.
The winds are being brought on by North Pacific storms, and their associated fronts, projecting too close to the islands. The strongest of these fronts is moving through today and will produce larger surf into tomorrow, but yet again we'll see unfavourable, onshore winds - this time westerly tending north-westerly.
The front will clear off into Wednesday allowing for better offshore, E/SE winds to kick in along with easing levels of mid-period W/NW swell energy.
Though the morning may still be lumpy, Wednesday looks to be the first day of competition with sets easing from the 8-10ft range along with relatively light if not variable sea breezes.
Thursday also looks nice and clean but the swell will be on the way out, small and weak so likely a lay day.
Following this, we're looking at no return to competition until next Monday, with Friday till Sunday seeing strong winds out of the north-eastern quadrant along with steeply angled N/NE swell - not good for Pipe or Backdoor - in the moderate to large size range.
Monday will see a large, long-period swell make landfall. The swell is the product of a strong low spawning off Japan later this week, with a significant fetch of severe-gale to storm-force westerly winds forecast. The models diverge slightly regarding the core strength of this low, with the European version (ECMWF) coming in weaker than the American version (GFS).
With this we'll put a small asterisk next to the forecast size on Monday, but we should see the long-period NW groundswell reaching at least 8-10ft along with strong easterly trade-winds. The lay days called this week and weekend are under the proviso that this swell (and the following one) deliver. Organisers will be watching them closely.
Though twelve days distant, and hence open to change, the last pulse of swell in the waiting period is a moderate-large mid-period from the northwest. At this stage - again, open to change - the winds look good. With four full days of competition - 32 hours - required to run the Men's and Women's the organisers may need this swell to avoid running in easing surf this Thursday and next Tuesday.
Follow the comments below for any adjustments to the updated forecast.