Easter's looking good!
Sydney, Hunter and Illawarra Surf Forecast by Ben Matson (issued Monday 15th April)
Best Days: Thurs onwards: fun building E/NE swell with mainly light winds. Biggest Sat/Sun, easing Mon.
Recap: The weekend delivered some fun smalll S’ly groundswell, with Saturday seeing inconsistent 2-3ft sets across the exposed south facing beaches, easing to 2ft on Sunday and 1-2ft today. Surf size was much smaller at beaches not open to the south. Winds were generally light so conditions were clean.
This week (April 16 - 19)
There’s really just one swell event worth considering this forecast period. And the good news for those of you heading away over the Easter break, is that it’s timed perfectly from Thursday onwards.
Prior until then, we’ll see small weak residual swells across the open beaches. There’s a smattering of minor, poorly consolidated E’ly fetches scattered across the Tasman Sea and they’ll all contribute a foot or so of peaky surf for the next few days, but it’s not worth getting too excited about.
Our Easter swell is being generated by a broadening E’ly fetch atop a large, stationary Tasman high, that’s expected to remain slow moving inside our swell window up until the weekend. Which means we’ll see E/NE swell through the entire holiday period.
Thursday will begin small, but should build into the 2ft+ range by the afternoon, and Friday should be a little more definitively 2-3ft at exposed beaches, maybe even some 3ft+ sets late in the day.
A modest front will exit eastern Bass Strait on Thursday and we may see a minor S’ly swell in the mix late Thursday and into Friday, however I can't see much, if any size showing.
The parent low to the front - whilst expected to momentarily strengthen in the southern Tasman Sea on Thursday - will be aimed mainly outside of our swell window so I’m not expecting any significant energy from this system either (though, I'll keep an eye on it in Wednesday's update).
At this stage, the local synoptics look like they’ll remain weak all week so I’m expecting light variable winds and sea breezes every day.
This weekend (April 20 - 21)
In addition to a plateauing E/NE swell over the weekend, which should reach 3-4ft at times (max size late Saturday or early Sunday), we are likely to see a small E/SE swell from a secondary ridge forming in the Southern Tasman Sea on Friday, in the lee of Thursday’s front.
Nothing amazing is expected from this source but it’s worth mentioning in these notes in the event the synoptics change with future model updates.
Current indications are that winds will remain light all weekend under a broad troughy pattern, so conditions should be clean both days.
Next week (April 22 onwards)
There’s plenty of surf on the long term radar, though nothing concrete yet (size, timing).
We’ll see a continuation of activity in the northern Tasman Sea next week, related to our current developments, though it’ll likely be positioned closer to the Northern NSW Coast and thus less favourably aligned for Southern NSW.
However, the broadscale steering patterns look conducive for further synoptic developments in the Tasman Sea, so it’s quite likely we’ll see fresh easterly swells from brand new sources next week.
All in all, we've got an active period ahead despite the lack of any significant size.
See you Wednesday!