Abundance of swell with plenty of windows of opportunity
Sydney Hunter Illawarra Surf Forecast by James Casey (issued Wednesday 7th April)
Best Days: Friday morning, offshore winds and peak of the E/NE swell. Mid morning Saturday. Sunday mid morning with SW winds and a building S swell. Tuesday next week with light NW winds and an easing S swell.
- E/NE swell from sub tropical low to peak Thursday afternoon into Friday morning.
- As the low begins moving further out to sea winds will go offshore with a nice window Friday morning ahead of a strong S change.
- Moderate S swell for Saturday
- Larger S swell to build into Sunday afternoon and into Monday
- Light winds and easing S swell Tuesday morning
That S swell started filling in on Monday afternoon and yesterday there were some 4-5ft sets in the Hunter, 4ft sets in Sydney and the Illawarra. It really is amazing it reached our coast with that kind of size as those winds south of Tassie looked very zonal.
Winds were light and offshore in the mornings but did swing around to the SE as the day went on, making it a little lumpy on the surface. The swell was solid enough it didn’t really matter too much though. All in all it was a nice surprise.
Today we have smaller waves with that S swell easing. Sydney and the Hunter are around the 3ft mark while the Illawarra is more like 2-3ft. Winds were lighter earlier out of the S but have strengthened out of the SE.
The long range S swell generated to the south and west of Tassie over the weekend will continue to ease as the E/NE swell begins to take over as the dominant source. This E/NE swell feels like it has been a long time coming with the complex sub tropical low forming in the Coral Sea finally beginning to shift south this afternoon.
The swell will begin to build from the late tomorrow (Thursday) with it peaking around the 3-4ft mark on Friday.
Winds will be light and variable tomorrow morning before building out of the E as the day goes on. It’ll be more SE for the Hunter, closer to the complex sub tropical low, and more NE for the Illawarra, with an infeed of N winds ahead of an approaching S change. Sydney will have lighter winds more out of the E stuck between the two systems.
Winds will be offshore Friday morning creating nice conditions with the E/NE swell whipped up by the low. Don’t wait around too long though as a strong S change will make it’s way up the coast, hitting the Illawarra by the mid afternoon, reaching Sydney by the late afternoon and the Hunter by the evening. Once these winds hit you’ll need to stick to the southern corners as bumpy to choppy conditions ruin the smoother offshore conditions from earlier in the day.
The weekend and next week
Early Saturday morning will still have a bit of morning sickness with light S winds. By mid morning an offshore breeze will develop cleaning things up nicely. The E/NE swell will combine with a new mid period S swell whipped up by the strong winds with the S change moving up the coast on Friday afternoon. Expect waves around the 3ft+ mark, more like 4ft for the Hunter.
Another stronger SW change will move through on Sunday cooling the air temperature down but keeping things clean. Waves will be smaller early in the morning as the previous days S swell fades out and the new S swell begins to build.
This larger S swell will originate from S and and W of Tassie and continue to be reinforced by more local S winds east of Tassie and up the entire east coast. Waves will begin to build Sunday afternoon and peak into Monday around the 4-6ft mark before beginning to ease on Tuesday.
Winds will continue out of the SW on Monday but ease a bit as the day goes on shifting SE by the late afternoon. Tuesday looks to be the pick of the days though as NW winds clean things up in the morning before strengthening out of the NE in the afternoon. There’ll still be at least 4-5ft of swell early Tuesday, easing slowly throughout the day.
Winds look to be out of the N on Wednesday as winds filter in ahead of yet another S change due to arrive late Wednesday night into Thursday morning. More on that in Friday’s update.