Persistent north-west winds with building surf

Craig Brokensha picture
Craig Brokensha (Craig)

South Australian Surf Forecast by Craig Brokensha (issued Wednesday June 14th)

Best Days: Today both coasts (Mid Coast before lunch), South Coast tomorrow morning, South Coast Saturday and Sunday, both coasts Monday, South Coast Tuesday

Features of the Forecast (tl;dr)

  • Easing swell this afternoon and tomorrow with strong N/NW-NW winds
  • Building N/NW windswell on the Mid Coast Fri with strong N/NW winds
  • Large W/SW groundswell for Sat with strong N/NW-NW tending W/NW winds
  • Reinforcing W/SW-SW swell Sun with strong W/NW winds
  • Easing swells Mon with variable winds on the Mid, W/NW down South
  • Easing surf Tue with fresh N/NW winds, smaller Wed with stronger N/NW breezes


The Mid Coast saw a stormy mix of swells whipped up through yesterday, hitting the 3-4ft range but with strong onshore winds. The South Coast started slow but increased in size through the afternoon, surfable in protected spots.

This morning conditions are cleaner with 3-4ft sets off Middleton-Goolwa, while the Mid Coast is much better with a lighter onshore wind and lumpy/bumpy 2-3ft sets left in the mix. Winds are expected to shift NW and strengthen through the day so make the most of the early light winds in the gulf.

Decent waves for the keen this morning on the Mid

This week and weekend (Jun 15 - 18)

Looking at the end of the week and both coasts will see the current swell easing in size this afternoon, becoming smaller tomorrow, dropping back from 2ft across Middleton with 2ft sets on the Mid Coast under a strong N/NW-NW breeze.

Friday will remain small and to 2ft or so across Middleton down South, with some new mid-period W/SW swell possibly showing up through the late afternoon. The Mid Coast will see a building N/NW windswell thanks to strengthening N/NW winds, coming in at 2ft in the morning, likely reaching 2-3ft by dark.

This windswell and mid-period swell energy will be ahead of some stronger, larger W/SW groundswell on the weekend, generated by a slow moving Southern Ocean gyre that's developed to the south-southwest of Western Australia.

Multiple fetches of gale-force W/SW winds are and will be generated through our western swell window, with the strongest and best forming this evening under Western Australia, projecting into the Bight tomorrow.

This will generate a large W/SW groundswell for Saturday that looks to come in 3ft+ on the Mid Coast with 4-5ft surf across the Middleton stretch (more so 4ft off the Bay thanks to the direction).

Strong N/NW-NW tending W/NW winds will favour the South Coast and create poor conditions on the Mid Coast Saturday, similar Sunday with winds expected to be strong from the W/NW all day as the backside of the Southern Ocean gyre pushes across us.

This looks to bring some lesser quality, but still sizey reinforcing W/SW-SW swell for Sunday afternoon, easing Monday with the Mid due to hold 3ft Sunday, while the South Coast also maintains 4-5ft.

As the front clears east on Monday, winds should back off quite considerably, bringing variable winds on the Mid Coast and easing 2-3ft sets, W/NW down South with easing 4-5ft sets. Tuesday will be excellent with easing surf from 3ft or so across Middleton under fresh N/NW winds, smaller Wednesday with stronger breezes.

Now, the longer term outlook is tricky, but it looks like a mid-latitude low/front will push up and across us later week, bringing some new swell but with dicey conditions. More on this Friday.