Mixed bag of surf next week with some good moments

Steve Shearer picture
Steve Shearer (freeride76)

Eastern Tasmanian Surf Forecast by Steve Shearer (issued Fri March 18th)

Features of the Forecast (tl;dr)

  • Fun levels of S swell Sat, easing Sun as a low hovers east of Tasmania
  • Fun E swell Tues, peaking Wed with offshore winds
  • Small S swell pulses Thurs into the weekend


E’ly swell was in the 2-3ft range yesterday with NE winds, which tended W through this morning before a stiff S’ly change arrived. That is now seeing a fast rising S swell pushing up into the 4ft range during this a’noon. This swell will peak overnight and ease through tomorrow.

This weekend and next week (Mar 18 - 25)

A decent strength cold front is passing into the Tasman Sea at the moment, and a trough in advance of the front is bringing a S’ly change to the region this a’noon. That front then forms a low, which becomes slow moving as it tracks NE towards the North Island. Swell is incoming from the front and the low, generating swell from the southern quadrant over the weekend and into next week.

Surf eases back quite quickly through Sat as a high pressure cell moves just east of the Island, leading to winds from the S easing through the day and tending light SE in the a’noon. Expect initial S swell to be in the 2-3ft range, easing back to 1-2ft during the day.

Sunday sees light and variable winds under the influence of high pressure but not much surf. Size in the 1-2ft range gets a small boost from new S/SE swell generated by the low as it tracked NE into the Tasman Sea. That should see some 2ft sets in the a’noon with light N winds.

Surf size bottoms out through Mon as the low will have drifted too far north to generate any S swell for the Island. Expect 1ft surf with a light N’ly flow.

The low does develop a useful fetch of E’ly winds on the southern flank and these are well aimed for NETas (see below). Expect E swell to build into the 2-3ft range with pre-frontal W’ly winds supplying excellent surface conditions.

Tasman low with useful fetch of E'ly winds aimed at Tasmania

This E swell peaks on Wed with excellent shaped 3ft waves courtesy of continuing W’ly winds. Make sure you pencil in Wed for a surf.

Into the end of next week and a new trough/front brings a S’ly change late Wed into Thurs with a quick fire S swell building into the 2ft range with S winds quickly tending N as a new high cell moves over the state.

Cold fronts moving past the state later next week are expected to generate some small S swell pulses, likely arriving Fri and Sat. No great size is expected.

Longer term and we’ll be  tracking an increase in cold front activity below Tasmania later next week. Recent model runs have supressed that activity more to the south, with more zonal fetches but we’ll keep tabs on it over the weekend, looking for the seasonal shift which will see the Southern swell window become more active.

Check back Mon for a full update.

Till then, have a great weekend!