Easing surf with average winds, great Friday
Victoria Forecast by Craig Brokensha (issued Monday 28th March)
Best Days: Wednesday morning keen surfers around Torquay, small Surf Coast Thursday, Friday both coasts, Saturday morning Surf Coast
Great clean 3-4ft waves across the Surf Coast Saturday morning with offshore W/NW winds, tending more variable ahead of a mid-afternoon onshore change. The surf kicked a little into the afternoon as well with a new SW groundswell ahead of a large increase in size Sunday.
This large powerful long-period SW groundswell was generated by a very intense mid-latitude low aiming 50kt+ winds through Victoria's swell window.
Cape Sorell recorded strong numbers with Significant Wave Heights peaking over 6m at 16s, and this resulted in large 5-6ft+ waves on the Surf Coast and 8ft+ surf on the Mornington Peninsula. Conditions weren't too favourable though with only a short-lived period of lighter winds from the western quadrant on the Surf Coast with onshore S/SW winds everywhere else.
Today the swell has eased back to the 3-5ft range on the Surf Coast with S/SE onshores and 6ft+ on the Mornington Peninsula.
This week (Mar 29 – Apr 1)
Moderate amounts of reinforcing SW groundswell will continue into this afternoon and tomorrow morning, generated by a broad and elongated fetch of strong SW winds on the backside of the intense low generating yesterday's SW swell.
A slow drop in size is due through the day though, from 3ft+ on the Surf Coast and 5ft on the Mornington Peninsula, down further from 2-3ft and 4-5ft respectively Wednesday morning.
Conditions will remain average tomorrow with a moderate to fresh S/SE wind, more S/SW Wednesday. There's a good chance for an early W'ly on the Surf Coast Wednesday morning for keen surfers.
A low point in swell activity is due Thursday morning with small leftover sets to 2ft on the Surf Coast and 3-4ft on the Mornington Peninsula under offshore NW winds.
Into the afternoon a small increase in SW groundswell is due from a pre-frontal fetch of W/NW gales ahead of a much stronger polar low forming south-western of WA.
This swell may produce the odd bigger set to 2-3ft on the Surf Coast through the afternoon and evening with 5ft sets on the Mornington Peninsula. Winds will likely swing more W/SW into the afternoon, but without too much strength.
Of greater importance is a long-period and strong SW groundswell due off the polar low, with a fetch of severe-gale to storm-force W/SW winds forming in our south-west swell window.
The fore-runners of this swell should be seen into Thursday afternoon, but a peak is due Friday morning to a strong but slightly inconsistent 3-5ft on the Surf Coast and 6ft+ on the Mornington Peninsula.
Winds will be good for both coasts through the morning with a N/NW offshore (N'ly early east of Melbourne), tending more NW and variable into the afternoon as the swell eases.
This weekend onwards (Apr 2 onwards)
Friday's long-period SW groundswell will be just the beginning of a much broader and multi-staged frontal progression moving in from the west through the middle to end of the week under the influence of a strong node of the Long Wave Trough.
What we'll see is a secondary strong polar front forming on the back of the low, followed by successive fronts piggy-backing over the top, generating a mix of SW and W/SW groundswell pulses.
Size wise we should see swell magnets on the Surf Coast offer 3-4ft waves Saturday morning, building more to the 4-5ft range out of the W/SW into the afternoon, with the largest increase due Sunday to 4-6ft.
The Mornington Peninsula should build towards 6-8ft Saturday afternoon, peaking Sunday in the 6-8ft+ range.
Winds will be great for the Surf Coast Saturday morning with a NW offshore, but a W/SW change is due late morning followed by a building ridge of high pressure and unfavourable S/SE winds Sunday.