Surf easing back to tiny to close out Summer, more action next week

Steve Shearer picture
Steve Shearer (freeride76)

South-east Queensland and Northern NSW Surf Forecast by Steve Shearer (issued Mon Feb 26th)

Features of the Forecast (tl;dr)

  • Easing swells this week with generally small E swells and light winds to close out Summer
  • Small S pulse favouring NENSW later Tues/Wed
  • Robust S swell favouring NENSW for size early next week, easing slowly into Wed/Thurs
  • Should see rebuilding trade swells by mid next week


E swell hung in on Sat with mostly 3ft surf and some bigger 4ft sets reported between Tweed-Byron. Winds stayed light most of the day as a trough stalled across the North Coast. S-SE winds kicked in Sun, with some small E swells to 2ft and a small flush of S swell across NENSW to 2-3ft. Light breezes this morning with a clean mix of S and E swells to 2ft with the occ. 3ft set at swell magnets. Looks like a quiet end to a very consistent summer. Details below. 

Still some very good waves on Sat

This week (Feb 26-Mar 1)

We’ve got a weak, troughy pattern in the Tasman Sea, with a minor cold front passing to the SE of Tasmania and a new high pressure cell poised to enter the Tasman in it’s wake. The high cell is weak so we’re looking at a fairly uninspiring end to Summer, with some mid week NE windswell for Southern NSW and small background E swells for the sub-tropics. After that quiet spell extends into the start of Autumn a stronger frontal intrusion into the Tasman looks likely next week with some robust S swell accompanying it. Details below. 

In the short run we’re looking at SE winds as the high sets a weak ridge along the coast, with winds clocking around E through E/NE during Wed. A quiet start with a small mixed bag to 1-2ft with some S swell filling in from todays front across the MNC. No great size expected with some 2ft sets at S facing beaches. 

The high quickly moves into the centre of the Tasman and develops light E’ly flow across the sub-tropics. A few small sets from the S at S magnets Wed morning to 2ft, tiny elsewhere under light land breezes tending light E’ly in the a’noon. 

Not much surf to to close out Summer. We’re looking at tiny, weak swells from Thurs onwards- functionally flat for most people. You may find the odd knee-waist high set at the nest swell magnets with light winds tending N’ly in the a’noon. 

This weekend (Mar 2-3)

Tiny surf continues into and across the weekend. Small and clean both mornings with W-NW winds and a’noon seabreezes. If you found a little bank making sense of micro-swells then you’ll be in luck for a slide- otherwise, a good weekend to take care of non-oceanic business. 

There will be a S’ly change pushing up the coast as a strong front and low enter the Tasman, which may reach the MNC later Sun a’noon. If the evolution of this system gets pushed forwards then we mat see a late kick in new S swell on Sun. We’ll update on Wed. 

Next week (Mar 4 onwards)

Depending on the strength of the low (GFS has a much stronger and more extensive fetch than EC) we’re looking at a solid blast of S swell for Mon- potentially up in the 5-6ft range across S exposed breaks in NENSW. Plenty of wind on tap too, as a strong new high pushes across the Bight and develops a ridge and SE surge up the coast. So, regional Points only.

Tues and Wed should see conditions settle down as the high moves into the Tasman and pressure gradients ease across Southern NSW.

Plenty of strong S swell Tues, with a slow easing expected into Wed and Thurs as winds shift through E-E/NE. 

We’ll fine-tune those details as we move through the week. 

Further ahead and we should see high pressure become slow moving in the Tasman. A moderate trade-flow looks to set up in the Coral Sea, with workable trade-wind swells in the sub-tropics for the second half of next week. Either way, nothing dramatic in the tropics on the radar, so we’ll come back Wed and see how it’s looking. 


boater's picture
boater's picture
boater Monday, 26 Feb 2024 at 3:31pm

Did anyone see/surf a kick in southerly swell in Nth NSW about lunchtime? Can't see it on the buoys but defs filled in

Jono's picture
Jono's picture
Jono Tuesday, 27 Feb 2024 at 3:01pm

Can see the period come in stronger here on the Tweed Offshore buoy:

boater's picture
boater's picture
boater Tuesday, 27 Feb 2024 at 9:39pm

Oh yeah that’s it, thanks

dazzler's picture
dazzler's picture
dazzler Wednesday, 28 Feb 2024 at 8:00am

Swell has finally finished. What a great run of waves. Points & beaches, crowds as expected however managed a few uncrowded (relatively) sessions here & there.

Best part is picked up new board about 2 weeks ago. Surfed it 8 times in 10 days up to yesterday & very happy!