Lots of swell over the weekend with average winds

South Australian Forecast (issued Friday 16th January)

Best Days: Keen experienced surfers down South tomorrow, Sunday morning across both coasts, Monday morning down South, Tuesday down South


Both the South Coast and Mid Coast remained poor yesterday with onshore winds and easing amounts of S/SW swell.

Today much cleaner conditions were seen down South as the swell held in enough to offer small fun sliders at Middleton and Waits. The Mid Coast was clean early but tiny.

This weekend onwards (Jan 17 -23)

There's been no real change to the moderate-large SW groundswell due across the South Coast over the weekend with a vigorous polar front being steered up towards us the last couple of days, under the influence of a strengthening node (peak) of the Long Wave Trough across Victoria.

A fetch of gale to severe-gale W/SW winds has been confirmed by satellite observations, with the system currently passing under the state.

A strong SW groundswell will result, filling in tomorrow and peaking around midday/early afternoon. The Mid Coast should pulse to 2ft on the sets through the day, while the South Coast should see 4-5ft sets at Middleton and 6ft bombs at Waits.

The swell should dip back a touch through Sunday morning, but a reinforcing and secondary pulse of S/SW groundswell is on the cards for afternoon, holding into Monday morning.

The source of this will be a secondary cold front firing up right on the tail of the initial system, continuing to aim a fetch of SW gales through our southern swell window tomorrow and early Sunday.

Most locations down South should persist in the 3-5ft range Sunday (4-5ft+ at Waits) before easing back from 3-4ft Monday. The Mid Coast is expected to ease from 1-1.5ft Sunday, down to 0.5-1ft Monday.

Conditions unfortunately won't be great, with onshore W/SW winds due during tomorrow morning across the South Coast, swinging more SW through the day. There's a chance for an early W'ly at dawn around Victor but this will be very short-lived.

Sunday looks workable as winds linger from the S/SW down South but without much strength, creating lumpy/wobbly conditions. The Mid Coast should be clean with a morning SE'ly, but without much size as touched on above.

As the S/SW groundswell starts easing Monday conditions will improve with an E/NE-NE breeze due during the morning, but Tuesday looks the cleanest and straightest with a fresh and gusty N/NE offshore. This may tend variable ahead of a late onshore change, with a glass-off more than likely mid-afternoon.

Size wise, exposed breaks will be the go with the swell easing from 2-3ft at Middleton and 3-4ft at Waits.

Wednesday will be a good lay day with the swell bottoming out under dicey winds, but into Thursday a new pulse of short-lived SW groundswell is due. This is forecast to be generated by an unfavourably tracking mid-latitude low from under WA, south of the Bight and then down past Tassie. A fetch of gale to severe-gale W/SW winds will be aimed temporarily through our swell window, kicking up 2ft waves at Middleton with 3-4ft sets at Waits and 1ft waves on the Mid. Winds look to swing back to the SE, favouring the Mid over the South Coast.

Longer term a more substantial frontal progression is forecast to push up and towards us later next week, generating plenty of swell for next weekend, but more on this Monday. Have a great weekend!