Sunday, September 25, 2016

9 25 16 morning call

Morning session at Hookipa was - as I wrote in the beach update - not the most thrilling.

Here's Fabrizio (who's from my same home town) showing a stylish bottom turn before going back home to watch a Napoli game.


Later on the windsurfers took over. This is the biggest wave out of this gallery by Jimmie Hepp. Must have been the wave of the day, since the other ones looked a lot smaller.


I had a morning shift at work and in between helping customers choosing the perfect rental board for their ability/preferences, I checked the Lahaina webcam several times and it looked absolutely gorgeous. Still head high sets at the harbor, as glassy as it gets all morning, what a swell this has been.

I drove there in the late afternoon and scored an uncrowded session at one of my favorite breaks. I was first by myself (which I always love, specially there) and the later I was joined by west side shaper Josh Weinsfield. We trades waves, we trades boards and we admired the spectacular sunset go off.

Josh was really impressed by my board. I got it on craigslist and that thing has made surfing the small south shore waves even more fun! Ladies and gentlemen, meet the Lil Rascal by Proctor surfboards. Mine is a 5.7 and it's not for sale.


Significant buoy readings 7am
Waimea
1.6ft @ 11s from 331° (NNW)

Pauwela
2.2ft @ 11s from 347° (NNW)
3.8ft @ 8s from 67° (ENE)
NW swell disappeared at the NW buoy and got smaller at Waimea, so you would think it's gonna decrease in Maui too. And it's probably going to be a bit smaller than yesterday, but I remember the weak NW fetch that generated it staying in place for long time, so it's not going to be flat.
A bit hard to surf, but the windsurfers will have the help of the added windswell when the wind will pick up later in the day.

Lanai
1.6ft @ 13s from 193° (SSW)
As you can see, there's still traces of the angular spreading swell and Lahaina looks good again on the cam. I have no doubt where I'm gonna spend the morning.
.

Current wind map shows:
- the weak NW fetch that has moved and now is a weak (but close) N fetch. North shore surfers who don't like to drive should be very thankful for this fetch. Never got strong, but stayed in place for many days and will cause the north shore not to go flat most of this week.
- a narrow windswell fetch
- a fetch down south that could bring a small south swell in a week.


MC2km maps not updated at 7.30am (sorry about the late call, btw), according to the NAM model on windguru, windsurfing should happen today. But not if you look at the HRW one (too onshore). And it looks even worse if you look at the GFS one at the top of their page. One of those days in which you have to wait and see, I guess.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

6.20am Hookipa has shoulder high peaks with a light wind on them. Kinda clean, but not the most thrilling ride of your life.

9 24 16 morning call


Just one (gorgeous) early morning session in Lahaina for me yesterday, as I hit the bottom of the energy level.
Hookipa looked kinda fun for windsurfing at lunch time, but even though I did have an hour before work, I couldn't pull it off.
This is the biggest wave I've seen in Jimmie Hepp's gallery on facebook.



Significant buoy readings 5am:
NW
3.2ft @ 11s from 330° (NW)

Waimea
1.7ft @ 11s from 325° (NW)

Pauwela
4.7ft @ 8s from 79° (ENE)           
1.4ft @ 12s from 328° (NW)

If that 3f reading at the NW buoy is not a glitch, we might see a little bump compared to yesterday at Hookipa. But I wouldn't expect nothing much bigger than the occasional head high set.

Lanai
2.3ft @ 15s from 204° (SSW)

W Hawaii
2.2ft @ 14s from 170° (S)

SE Hawaii
3.3ft @ 14s from 145° (SE)

Still good numbers at the buoys for this lovely south swell. Surfing the Lahaina side is still definitely an option today. Check the webcam for wind and size visual indications.

Wind map shows:
- the weak NW fetch responsible for the steady supply of small waves on the north shore until at least Wednesday. It got a little closer, which is good from the energy dissipation point of view, but its winds are still pretty light, so don't expect anything huge.
- the windswell fetch
- a fetch down south that is shooting east of us
- an intense cyclone south of Japan that is going to move west and don't do anything for us (that's why I didn't circle it)


MC2km map at noon shows plenty wind for wind related sports on the north shore.

Friday, September 23, 2016

6.20am I didn't see anything bigger than waist high all the way to  lahaina, which instead seems to still have some sets up to head high.

9 23 16 morning call

Back to the "normal" two sessions yesterday, I definitely felt the tiredness of the six of the day before.

The waves were pumping on the Lahaina side, Mala looked like the best spot, but packed.
My second session was at Maalaea that instead only had three guys out. It was head high when I took this picture, unfortunately it went down to waist to chest high ones when I paddled out.

This guys is riding a 9.0 Bic longboard (a very high performance shape) with no center fin for more speed.


Blog reader Ralph Sifford was one of the three surfers.


Another nice one for the finless rider.


Significant buoy readings 4am.
Waimea
1.1ft @ 15s from 283° (WNW)

Pauwela
3.8ft @ 8s from 60° (ENE)
3.1ft @ 6s from 63° (ENE)
0.6ft @ 15s from 326° (NW)
0.6ft @ 12s from 65° (ENE)

A tiny bit of energy from NW at those buoys above, but mostly windswell on Maui's north shore. Surfline calls for 2f 11s from NW tomorrow. This energy will come from the weak NW fetch I pointed out on the wind maps of the past few days.
 
Lanai
2.4ft @ 15s from 202° (SSW)

W Hawaii
3ft @ 14s from 159° (SSE)

SE Hawaii
3.8ft @ 14s from 165° (SSE)

Angular swell still up at the buoys, even thought the period went down a bit. I'm very impressed by the energy of this swell, I wasn't expecting so much of it from a swell that was mostly aimed somewhere else, really.
Lahaina will be the call again for me, stay tuned for the beach reports.
 
Current wind map shows the weak (but getting wider) NW fetch, the windswell fetch and down south a fetch that I would have not even circled if it wasn't for how strong the current angular spreading swell has been. That fetch is shooting towards South America, I'm really curious to see if we're gonna get something in a week or not.
 
MC2km maps not updated yet, the two models at the bottom of the Windguru page show a day of strong easterly wind. The top one also show a lot of rain.
 
Which is confirmed in the early morning. The sound of the hard rain actually woke me up earlier than usual. Or was it because I went to sleep exhausted at 7.15pm?
Gonna be another good day, you guys... don't waste it!
 

Thursday, September 22, 2016

9.40am lahaina totally going off and clean.

70am lahaina side waist to head high and clean. Occasionally overhead.

9 22 16 morning call

Six sessions.

That's how I'm gonna describe my surfing day on the Lahaina side yesterday. Five would have been a record already.

Olowalu was firing, here's some shots. You don't often see sections and turns like that there.


The morning high tide backwash was doing all kind of things to the wave, like creating sudden unexpected overhead peaks.


There were some moments in the afternoon too. I saw one wave that looked like a perfect lower Trestles right, sun reflections on the wave included.


I thought I had my last session and was done for the day at least three times. I was chilling out after my fifth one, when my buddy Peter came out of the water saying:"let's go look for a high tide spot!"
Looks like we found it. I got some gopro clips of those perfectly clean little waves (the quality factor was through the roof), but absolutely no time to edit them. Good, we got some small days ahead next week, I'll have some material to post.


Significant buoy readings 4am.
Pauwela
3.6ft @ 8s from 73° (ENE)
2.5ft @ 6s from 58° (ENE)
2.4ft @ 7s from 61° (ENE)
0.6ft @ 14s from 39° (NE)
Only windswell on the north shore. I didn't even check Hookipa yesterday and I won't this morning either.

Lanai
2.9ft @ 17s from 197° (SSW)

W Hawaii
3.4ft @ 15s from 169° (SSE)

SE Hawaii
4.6ft @ 16s from 191° (SSW)

Fantastic numbers at the buoys, this angular spreading swell is still pumping.

Current wind map shows a weak NW fetch, the usual windswell fetch and one down south that COULD give us another angular spread swell in a week. Just like this current one, it's not gonna hit the Samoa buoy at all, so the only way to find out if it happens will be by checking the local buoys.


MC2km maps not updated yet, it should be a light to moderate trades day.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

6.30am lahaina side has inconsistent beautiful waist to chest high long period lines. High tide might even be killing it a bit.

9 21 16 morning call

Double Lahaina session plus a cheeky longboard session at sunset at Hookipa for me yesterday. Much better quality on the south shore with some sets pushing in the shoulder high range.
This is how the windswell looked at Hookipa at sunset instead.



Significant buoy readings 3am:
Pauwela
4.7ft @ 8s from 66° (ENE)
Only windswell on the north shore today. Below I'm posting the very interesting readings at the different buoys of what I'm gonna call the "angular spreading" swell.

NW
1.2ft @ 15s from 135° (SE)

N
1.6ft @ 17s from 161° (SSE)

Mokapu
0.8ft @ 18s from 153° (SSE)

Lanai
2ft @ 17s from 200° (SSW)

W Hawaii
3.5ft @ 15s from 166° (SSE)

SE Hawaii
3.2ft @ 17s from 184° (S)

To elaborate on those apparently confusing (at least the direction) readings, it would help a lot to know the positions of all the buoys, so here's a little map to refresh your knowledge.
I put lines to indicate the swell direction at some of them. As you can see from the readings, the swell is almost straight south at the SE buoy. If you remember the original fetch (I put the map on yesterday's post), the swell at this point has already spread angularly a lot compared to the originating source and has changed its original direction that was around SW.
After hitting the SE buoy, the swell will continue to angularly spread and come from a slightly more easterly direction as it moves north.
Check how similar the directions are at the W and N buoys (166 and 161) and by the time the swell hits the NW buoy it is even more east (135).
This is a great graphical example of how swells fan out of their original direction of creation.


But why does the Lanai buoy indicate a direction of 200 instead? Because of that buoy is located close to the coastline and it registers the refraction of the swell over the southernmost tip of the island.
I tried to represent that below. The bottom long line indicates the supposed SSE approaching direction. Some energy will already refract around the east and west tips of Kahoolawe (I only showed the bending over the last one) and also around Makena point.
When the swell approaches Lanai (still supposingly from a SSE direction) it will refract over the land and become first S and then SSW, like indicated by the buoy.
In 15 years that I live here, I have shamingly never been in Lanai so I have no idea of how the coastline looks over there, but it looks to me like there might be some fun lefts over there these days.


The bottom line of this whole discussion is: there is a south swell!
I was talking with a blog reader yesterday and I couldn't believe he told me:"you surfed Lahaina? I didn't know there was a south swell?"
"What? Did you check the blog this morning?"
"Yes, but you wrote check the webcam..."

Ok guys, when I write check the webcam, I mean that you should do that if you want to have a more precise idea of the size of the waves at the harbor and the local wind conditions, NOT to see if there's a swell or not. That information is at the buoys.
So yes, there definitely is a south swell today and there will be tomorrow too.
How big? 2f 17s at the buoy. If that is not clear enough for you, you check the webcam or go surfing and try to memorize what that was.
It's not only about the size. It's the consistency, how many waves in a set (yesterday there were a lot of single wave sets), how clean, how powerful and fast. 2f 17s is a killer reading for the south shore and I'll be all over it today.
Sorry, can't make it more clear than that.

Current wind map shows a depressing lack of significant fetches.


Below is the map of today as forecasted 9 days ago on Sept. 12. I post this to show how unreliable these long term model runs are. Check the differences: that possible hurricane dissolved and that massive Tasman Sea fetch did not happen at all. Just FYI.


Mc2km maps not updated, these are the two models at the bottom of the Windguru page. It won't be particularly windy, but it all depends on the direction that the wind will have. The difference in the Haleakala amplification effect between 74 and 67 can be very significant.
I would recommend to check MC2km later when the maps will be up for a more reliable forecast.