Victorian Surf Forecast by Craig Brokensha (issued Wednesday 19th January)
Best Days: Tomorrow morning for the desperate east of Melbourne and similar Sunday morning across exposed beaches
Features of the Forecast (tl;dr)
- Easing, small mid-period SW swell and SE windswell tomorrow with fresh E-E/SE tending stronger SE winds
- Tiny, fading surf Fri with light E/NE-NE tending SE winds
- Tiny weekend with morning NE winds and afternoon SE sea breezes
Yesterday's moderate to large W/SW groundswell showed up strongly across western Tasmania, on the Cape Sorell wave buoy but it didn't really translate to any real size on the Surf Coast, well not to the forecast expectations. Inconsistent 3ft to occasionally 4ft sets were seen on the magnets but with deteriorating conditions with a moderate W/SW tending fresher S/SW breeze.
The Mornington Peninsula saw strong 6ft sets though a touch under the expected 8ft. It looks like the swell had a bit too much west in it but alas, quality surfing options were limited to a handful of breaks.
Today the swell has eased as some new south-east windswell develops under strengthening E/SE tending SE winds. There are OK waves east of Melbourne for the keen out of the wind.
This week and next (Jan 20 – 28)
Looking at the forecast period ahead and you better enjoy easterly winds, as that's what we're looking at for the coming few days, extending well into next week before a change pushes through later in the week/next weekend.
The reason for this persistent run of winds from the eastern quadrant and minimal groundswell is a large, persistent blocking pattern setting up across the south of the country.
Currently a strong high pressure ridge is edging in from the west while inland troughs squeeze its northern flank, directing a squeezing easterly pressure gradient across the south-east of the country.
This high will remain stubborn and near stationary across Tasmania through the end of the week and weekend, combining with a secondary ridge moving in from under Western Australia into next week.
The inland troughiness will move ever so slowly south and into the Bight, pushing the high pressure belt further south which puts a bigger block across our swell windows in the Southern Ocean.
This will lead to a run of small to tiny surf across the exposed beaches east of Melbourne while the Surf Coast will pick up sporadic pulses of weak south-east windswell as winds strengthen through Bass Strait.
So looking at the coming days and we'll see the current mid-period swell (from the final stages of the strong low linked to yesterday's swell) fading through tomorrow, mixed in with weak levels of easing SE windswell on the Surf Coast. 2ft+ waves are due across both regions (2-3ft on the lower Surf Coast) and a fresh E/SE-E'ly wind will favour selected breaks east of Melbourne through the morning.
Friday will be cleaner with a lighter E/NE-NE breeze but swell wise there'll be no size left on either coast. Expect 1-1.5ft surf across both regions (1-2ft lower Surf Coast), fading through the day.
The weekend may see some inconsistent, background swell providing 1-2ft sets on the Mornington Peninsula, tiny on the Surf Coast and winds will be favourable each morning, light from the NE ahead of afternoon SE sea breezes.
Winds will continue out of the north-east into early-mid next week while the trough in the Bight may form into a mid-latitude low, bringing an onshore change later in the week. We'll have a closer look at this Friday. Swell wise there's nothing over 1-2ft expected on the Mornington Peninsula with tiny surf continuing to the east.