Fading surf with a good W/SW swell from late week

Craig Brokensha picture
Craig Brokensha (Craig)

South Australian Surf Forecast by Craig Brokensha (issued Monday January 22nd)

Best Days: South Coast magnets tomorrow for the super keen, Mid Coast Saturday and Sunday, South Coast Saturday and Sunday mornings for the keen, Monday morning South Coast

Features of the Forecast (tl;dr)

  • Fading surf over the coming days with favourable winds all day tomorrow, and both Wed and Thu AM
  • Moderate sized W/SW swell building later Fri, peaking Sat, easing slowly Sun
  • Fresh SW-S/SW winds Fri, moderate S/SE tending gusty SW Sat
  • E/NE-NE tending SE winds Sun and N/NE tending NW ahead of a SW change Mon


Good and improving surf on Saturday with Friday's large S'ly pulse still providing good sized 3ft+ sets in the morning as variable winds freshened from the NW ahead of an early afternoon change.

The surf ironed out under the increasing heat and offshore wind before the change ruined it for the rest of the day and yesterday.

Today conditions are a bit better with more east in the wind but a mix of average swells for the desperate, flat and windy in the gulf.

Great waves when the offshore kicked in Saturday

This week and weekend (23 - 28)

The coming days look small and average as the current swell continues to fade away, with 1-2ft sets max left across Middleton tomorrow, tiny into Wednesday.

Conditions should be clean tomorrow morning with a local offshore wind that will then shift NE during the morning and then variable NW into the afternoon and evening.

Wednesday morning looks clean again with local offshore winds but no swell.

Looking at the swell due into the end of the week though and a strengthening frontal system that's currently projecting towards Western Australia is producing a fetch of strong W/SW winds through our western swell window. At the core of the fetch, bursts of gale-force winds are forecast during tomorrow, with the system weakening and breaking down on approach to us Wednesday and Thursday.

The frontal system will continue on its slow way through our south-western swell window and clip the state on Friday, with a moderate sized W/SW groundswell due to follow, building strongly into the late afternoon, peaking Saturday morning.

There'll also be plenty of mid-period swell energy in the mix from the frontal system approaching us through the middle to end of the week.

The Mid Coast should build to 2ft+ into the late afternoon Friday with 2ft to occasionally 3ft sets on the favourable parts of the tide Saturday, while Middleton should build to 3ft+ later Friday and peak Saturday to 4ft or so.

Looking at the local winds and fresh SW-S/SW breezes are due on Friday as the swell builds thanks to the swell generating system clipping the sate, with Saturday being best in the gulf under moderate, morning S/SE breezes ahead of strong SW sea breezes.

Sunday looks cleaner for the South Coast with an E/NE-NE offshore and easing surf from 3ft, 1-2ft and slowing on the Mid Coast, cleaner Monday but smaller again.

Longer term some additional W/SW swell may be seen through mid-late next week but we'll have a closer look at this on Wednesday.