Grim outlook for the Garden State

Victorian Surf Forecast by Ben Matson (issued Tuesday 27th January)

Best Days: No great days due to a persistent SE wind. Wednesday PM, Thursday AM at the southern ends of the Mornington Peninsula and Phillip Island if you're desperate.

Recap: Great waves Saturday with light winds and a solid swell. Early W/NW winds Sunday morning gave way to onshores for the rest of the day as the swell eased. Similar winds padded out Monday (brief window of W/NW in Torquay) ahead of a persistent southerly, which has held into today as the swell eases very slowly.

This week (Jan 28 onwards)

Nothing great is expected in the surf department for the rest of the week, due to a persistent south-east wind regime.

We are still expecting a small, long range SW groundswell to building slowly on Wednesday and hold into early Thursday. Winds are expected to swing more E/SE during the day, but apart from the far southern ends of the Mornington Peninsula and Phillip Island, there’s not a lot of protection from this airstream (there’ll still be a leftover southerly bump in the water too). As such I wouldn’t bother surfing unless you’re going to be in the near vicinity.

This swell will then ease through Thursday afternoon and nothing of interested is expected on Friday, although winds could go light and variable as a small aberration in the synoptic field propagates its way clockwise around a large Tasman low sitting east of Bass Strait. But with no new swell on offer, and leftover conditions from the previous days’ winds, there won’t be much to write home about.

On the Surf Coast, this persistent SE flow will generate a local windswell but with mainly onshore winds there won’t be a lot of quality on offer. So don’t bother surfing along this stretch unless you’re totally desperate.

This weekend (Jan 31 - Feb 1)

The last two weekends have offered great surf, and I hope you’ve made the most of it as this weekend doesn’t look very flash at all.

The aforementioned Tasman Low will dominate our winds and weather through the weekend, and with no major new swell expected in the water (bar a small long range westerly swell that won’t really show up away from exposed beaches) we’re looking at a predominant mix of short range, junky local swell both days. 

I’ll update this outlook on Friday in the faint hope that the weather model improve the situation (for example, by pushing the Tasman Low further west, and creating a local westerly airstream in conjunction with a short range S/SW swell generated just off Tasmania’s West Coast), but that’s extremely optimistic thinking. For now it’s really not looking very flash.

Next week (Feb 2 onwards)

Nothing major on the charts for next week at this stage. A small polar low (and a couple of follow up systems) are expected to squeak through the eastern periphery of our southern swell window over the weekend, and may set up a S/SW swell for the first half of next week - but I fear they’ll develop too far east and aim the swell up into the Tasman Sea.

Otherwise, our broader swell window will be under the influence of a blocking pattern - which is perfectly normal for this time of year - but the upshot of this is mainly small swells, where you’ll have to work around small windows of opportunity in the local wind field. I can’t see anything worthwhile yet! See you Friday.


goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot commented Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 at 11:42am

Epic forecast

sarge4's picture
sarge4's picture
sarge4 commented Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 at 2:55pm

Ben can you please just make up something positive to give us some hope at least......


thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 at 2:58pm

sarge4's picture
sarge4's picture
sarge4 commented Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 at 3:15pm

Oh dear