Clean mornings before a strong SE surge this weekend

Steve Shearer picture
Steve Shearer (freeride76)

South-east Queensland and Northern NSW Forecast by Steve Shearer (issued Wed April 17th)

Features of the Forecast (tl;dr)

  • Easing swell combo Thurs with early light winds
  • Light winds Fri morning with clean leftovers 
  • Increasing S-SE winds this weekend with plenty of short range SE swell both days, smaller on the Points
  • SE swell extending into next week
  • Dynamic outlook next week with trough/low forming in the Coral Sea or South Pacific and possible strong E swell- low confidence on specifics, check back Fri for latest updates


We saw small, clean surf through Tues morning mostly in the 2ft range before light onshore breezes kicked in. Really nice looking lines this morning with both S swell to 3ft and inconsistent, long range E swell sets to 3-4ft(bigger 4-6ft surf reported across the MNC) under offshore winds which are expected to tend light E/NE-NE through the a’noon. 

Clean lines on the Sunshine Coast

Quality and size available on the Mid North Coast

This week (April 17 - 19)

No great change to the f/cast outlook this week. We’ve got a monster high (1033hPa) in the Bight and a weaker high cell in the Tasman, with some small troughs of low pressure lingering about the coastline. We’ll see a frontal intrusion later Fri bring mod/fresh SW/S winds before a new high pressure ridge quickly fills in behind the front.

In the short run we should see clean conditions tomorrow morning with offshore winds, tending W/SW then light/variable after lunch. Expect  slow surf from the E with sets to 3 occ. 4ft when they come and some small sideband energy from the S offering 2ft energy  at S exposed breaks. 

Get in early Friday morning for offshore W/SW-SW winds and small leftovers to 2ft. The rest of the day looks ordinary with mod/fresh SW-S winds making a mess of S facing beaches. There’ll be some small E/NE swell around from a weak fetch feeding into a small area of troughy low pressure off the Fraser Coast - not much more than a foot or two but supplying smaller peelers for the Points. 

This weekend (April 20 - 21)

A windy weekend ahead as a strong high pressure ridge builds up the coast. We’ll see mod/fresh S-SE winds establish and with the SE surge some building short range swell, up into the 3-4ft range on Sat, smaller into more protected Points.

Same again for Sun as mod/fresh S/SE-SE winds become established under a strong ridge. Size should ramp up further as a trough deepens in the Coral Sea, with windy 4-5ft surf in SEQLD, a notch smaller in NENSW. 

Next week (April 22 onwards)

Plenty of action in the tropics and subtropics next week  with some model divergence for later next week.

High pressure moves into the Tasman to start the week and maintains the firm ridge so we’ll see SE winds to open the week. Monday for sure, Tues through the morning before NE winds kick in.

Continuing SE swell both days likely in the 3-4ft range Mon. A small glancing blow of S swell Mon a’noon from a poorly positioned fronts below the continent should see some 2 occ. 3ft sets at S swell magnets Mon a’noon.

Easing through Tues. 

The rest of the week now looks increasingly dynamic and fluid, so expect revisions Fri.

The gist of it is a trough line in the Coral Sea, which may deepen into a low pressure system and drift towards the North Island (GFS scenario) or move towards the QLD coast as a coastal trough and intensify a NE infeed into the SEQLD, then NSW Coast possibly as early as Tues.

Big variations in outcomes there, with anything from rain, onshore winds and NE swell to quality E/SE swell for the sub-tropics next week and into the weekend.

We may see a return S’ly flow from a low forming in the trough line off the Gippsland or Far South Coast next weekend. 

Lots of dynamic possibilities with very low confidence in outcomes this far out.

Check back Fri and we’ll see how it’s shaping  up. 


Fresh55's picture
Fresh55's picture
Fresh55 Thursday, 18 Apr 2024 at 9:17am

Can we get a run down of latest forecast update anyone. Saying some big wild weather coming Monday

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather Thursday, 18 Apr 2024 at 12:58pm
PL's picture
PL's picture
PL Thursday, 18 Apr 2024 at 10:33am

Current forecast showing 5m swell Monday afternoon on the SC. Crikey.

Slackjawedyokel's picture
Slackjawedyokel's picture
Slackjawedyokel Thursday, 18 Apr 2024 at 3:13pm


Island Bay's picture
Island Bay's picture
Island Bay Thursday, 18 Apr 2024 at 3:13pm

Very very nice.

scrotina's picture
scrotina's picture
scrotina Thursday, 18 Apr 2024 at 6:56pm

very very nice? surely this will be a bank buster

adsi's picture
adsi's picture
adsi Thursday, 18 Apr 2024 at 9:26pm

Yeh looks pretty windy too, will be too big and blown out nearly everywhere. Sure there'll be the usual spots pumping