Last of the Southern Gyre swell this weekend with some fresh swell sources next week
Sydney Hunter Illawarra Surf Forecast by Steve Shearer (issued Wed 15th June)
Forecast Summary (tl;dr)
- More solid S swell Tues, easing slowly through Wed, with a rebuild Wed PM
- Size holds Thurs AM, easing during the day
- Offshore winds continue this week until Fri
- S’ly winds expected this weekend with long range, long period SSE swell biggest Sat, easing Sun
- SE-E/SE swell sources Tues next week, becoming solid Wed/Thurs, stay tuned for revisions
The long tail on the current S swell event has supplied plenty of good and still sizey waves since Mon. There were still plenty of 6ft sets on offer yesterday- bigger 6-8ft on the Hunter and deep-water adjacent reefs- with light winds providing premium surface conditions. Size has eased back another notch this morning with clean 3-5ft surf across most of the region and some bigger 4-6ft surf on the Hunter. A new pulse of S swell is filling in this a'noon, with sets to 4-5ft at S facing beaches in Sydney, bigger 4-6ft across the Central Coast and Hunter. Hope you are getting your fill.
This week (June 15-17)
Beautiful settled conditions at the moment with high pressure in the Tasman off the Central NSW Coast and a weakening low and frontal system just west of Tasmania poised to supply a couple more days of W’ly biased winds through the short term. The Southern Ocean gyre is now well to the S and SE of the South Island, generating one last pulse of long period swell for our region. There’s a fresh set of cards to sort through next week with a couple of swell sources on offer. Read on for details.
A front passing well to the south Mon, supplies another pulse of S swell which is already showing at S facing beaches, and that pulse will carry over into Thurs with sets to 3-5ft at S facing beaches, a little bigger on the Hunter and Central Coast. NW winds will swing more W’ly through the day as the low moves east of Tasmania and drives a fairly weak synoptic flow across temperate NSW. There should be plenty of fun waves to be had, with an easing trend apparent through the a’noon.
The working week ends with surf easing through morning. Leftover surf in the 2-3ft range will be clean early under W to SW winds but these winds will clock around SW to S through the a’noon as weak low pressure and a high in the bight combine to drive a thin S’ly flow along the NSW Coast. In the a’noon, long period SSE swell from the fetch under the South Island is expected to fill in. These South Island fetches always make me nervous, but considering the strength of the gyre, there’s reason for confidence in swell models and we should see sets to 4-5ft showing after lunch with quality hampered by S’ly winds. Some 6ft sets are on the cards at noted magnets.
This weekend (June 18-19)
No great change to the weekend f/cast. Winds still looking a bit iffy with weak low pressure in the Tasman and a high moving East from the Bight maintaining a S’ly flow along the coast for both Sat and Sun. There’s likely to be a brief window of SW winds early both mornings, more likely north of Sydney Harbour, before S’lies kick in.
Surf-wise, long period SSE swell peaks through Sat. Exposed S facing breaks will see some inconsistent 4-5ft surf, with more protected breaks smaller. Keep expectations pegged quite low due to the wind, but there should be enough energy and period in the swell to provide some fun waves at more protected spots.
Sunday sees the SSE swell slowly easing back with 3-4ft sets early, dropping back to 3ft or less during the a’noon. A bit of short period, local S’ly windswell is likely through the a’noon if you are desperate. Nothing amazing Sunday but there will be surfable options.
Next week (June 13 onwards)
Weak high pressure ridge along the coast early next week and the high in the central Tasman sets up a SE flow adjacent to New Zealand and extending into the Central Tasman. That now looks a little weaker than it did Mon.
Light onshore winds Mon are expected along with a faint signal of long period SSE swell and some short range SE swell, with all sources topping out around 2-3ft.
Tues looks a better bet, with the ridge slackening and an approaching front possibly seeing winds tilt more N to NW through the day. SE swell should perk up a notch into the 3ft range, bigger 3-4ft on the Hunter. That should see some peaky options on beachbreaks through the day.
By Wed we’ll be expecting a muscle up in E swell, as a sub-tropical low intensifies around the North Island of New Zealand early in the new week (see below). There’s swell producing fetches both on the inside of the North Island down to Cook Strait- better aimed at Central NSW- and a fetch north of the North Island, better aimed at subtropical regions. We’ll finesse those fetches as hey come into being but for now we are looking at good quality E swell building into the 4-5ft range later Wed under NW to W winds, possibly tending W/SW to SW as a small low spins up off the coast.
This size should extend into Thurs before easing Fri.
Models are still divergent into next weekend but it looks like the low will not have good high pressure support and surf will be small heading into the next weekend 25/26 June.
Check back Fri for the latest update before the weekend.