Plenty of E'ly swell this week with some onshore winds degrading quality in the short term
South-east Queensland and Northern NSW Surf Forecast by Steve Shearer (issued Mon Feb 12th)
Features of the Forecast (tl;dr)
- Extended run of trade swell continues, softer mid week, rebuilding again Thurs/Fri
- E’ly winds tending E/NE-NE south of Byron through Tues/Wed
- Lighter winds possible Wed/Thurs (may offer up beachbreak opportunities) more likely in SEQLD
- Back to SE winds Fri, lighter on the weekend
- Smaller but fun E swell over the weekend
- More E swell next week
- Small S swell pulses Tues/Wed next week
Chunky E’ly tradewind swell held in nicely all weekend with most of the size determined by large new moon tides. Sat saw 3-4ft surf with SE winds, with a few light patches around rain squalls. The south-east flow was more entrenched Sun, even bumping up the Points a bit after overnight E’lies with more 3-4ft surf. Similar sized today - maybe a touch bigger- with winds more E/SE-E’ly and only the Points offering up a rideable wave.
This week (Feb 12-16)
Not much change from the way things looked on Friday. Large high in the Tasman directing plenty of E’ly-SE’ly tradewinds through the Coral Sea and South Pacific slot. Typical summer wind pattern with E-E/SE winds in the sub-tropics, tending more E/NE-NE south of Byron from tomorrow . A moderate front and trough disrupts the pattern mid week before the next reinforcing high resets the ridge late this week. To the north the monsoon trough remains active but there’s no real developments which impact our surf potential as far as cyclones go in the short/medium term.
E’ly tradewind swell and plenty of it this week. As mentioned below the line over the weekend the tropical low anchoring the fetch motored further west than modelled on Fri which has shaved off a bit of size from the top end but we’re still looking at a chunky 3-4ft with occ. 5ft sets of E’ly swell through tomorrow, likely easing a notch into Wed before rebuilding again into Thurs/Fri into the 3-5ft range.
Quality is the issue with a straight E’ly flow through tomorrow, tending more E/NE-NE south of Byron.
As indicated on Fri we may see softer winds Wed and Thurs morning under weaker, troughier pressure gradients along the coast but it’s not possible to have 100% confidence in that call. Or even if it cleans up enough to open up the beachies if it does lay down. Given the medium confidence , best to keep tabs on local winds and we’ll update in real time below the line.
Winds looks to shift back E/SE-E through Fri - probably more S/SE-SE north of the border.
As always during these events, the Points will be the safest bet with crowds to match.
This weekend (Feb 17-18)
Look like a light/variable SE-E flow this weekend with a chance for morning land breezes both days. The tradewind fetch retreats eastwards later this week with an easing in size expected as a result, likely bottoming out in the 3ft+ range both days. Looks like a fun weekend of waves with winds light enough to open up a much broader range of surf spots and spread the crowds out.
Next week (Feb19 onwards)
E’ly tradewind swell continues into next week, although they do look to soften in the Coral Sea under some modelled scenarios as a tropical depression near Samoa drags the fetch to the SE. We’d expect them to maintain in the 3ft range at a minimum for at least the first half of next week. Possibly stronger if the trade fetch rebuilds in the Coral Sea as it does under the EC scenario.
A moderate/minor strength front passes into the Tasman later Sun/Mon (see below), which looks to supply some small S swell pulses, likely Tues into Wed. We’ll fine-tune specifics through the week but at this early stage it looks unlikely to exceed 2-3ft at S facing beaches.
Back to high pressure in the Tasman with SE winds for most of next week.
Otherwise, looking longer term, nothing major on the radar.
Check back Wed and we’ll see how it’s shaping up.