Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Tuesday 10 17 17 morning call

Great day of action for me yesterday. The south swell was slow (they always are because of the long distance of travelling, but the angular spreading ones like this one are even more inconsistent), but when the set came there was some solid size at select spots. I surfed one of them and managed to catch this absolute gem.


Here's a challenging drop from a fellow surfer.


After that I joined my friend Kathy for a SUP foiling session that had some moments of epicness. Doesn't look epic to you? That's because you're looking at it with the eyes of the surfer.


Let's see if this helps you understand the beauty of foiling. The clip below shows a wave that was waist high at the takeoff and knee high for the rest of it. Not only it was knee high, but it was so soft that the only other vessel that could have ridden it all the way, is a one man canoe. It would have done that by going straight to the shore though, instead of going left and right (which means, I was going much faster than a straight line to the shore).
At the end I could have cut back left again and beach it, but there were three surfers on my line and I made a personal rule to not get anywhere close to regular surfers when I'm on the foil.
Enjoy the quietness.


Still not convinced?
Then look at the epic surfing wave of the first image. It was head high (well overhead at the take off), clean, blue and with a perfect line. It was obviously a great pleasure to ride it on my newly acquired Tom Parrish 6.10 step-up (craigslist screaming deal!).
Then look again at the super soft knee high wave I rode in the video clip.
Well, I know it's hard to believe, but I had more fun on the second one. Because I felt like a Pelikan gliding in front of the wave, like in the image below. We do a very similar thing on the foil. They use the lift of the air being pushed by face of the wave, we use the lift of the water being pushed by it.


But since everyone is different and like different things, I'll keep reporting about all the water sports and here's Jimmie Hepp's photo of the windsurfers at Hookipa from this gallery, which he very aptly called "big and bumpy".


Unfortunately, the surfline page reporting all the buoys (link n.11 of the GP's meteo websites list on the right) is down again, so I got to get creative here.
Why do I like that page so much? Look at what you get if you go on the NOAA page of the W buoy, for example. Do you see any sign of the southerly energy? No, because the dominant one is the windswell pounding at a solid 8-9f 10s. If you only check the buoys in this way, you would never know that there is a south swell.
Surfline instead takes the raw data from the same buoy and separates all the different swells that are hitting that buoy.
Since that page is down today, we'll have to go by the forecast that is still calling for declining 3f 15s for today.



For the north shore I'm gonna use this plot by PacIOOS instead. 10f 10s are the impressive numbers of the "windswell" still pumping also today. Notice the change of the direction to 39, which reflects yesterday's and today's fetches orientation. If it wasn't for the wind creating chop on the breaking waves, that would have been an epic direction for all the rights on Maui's north shore. The kind of direction that allows you to catch a wave at Green Trees and kickout in the channel.


Wind map at noon shows again strong trades. Kihei should be sheltered again.


North Pacific shows a strong fetch oriented towards Alaska. We might get some angular spreading out of it, but yesterday's fetch was the one that generated the most energy aimed at us. The related NW swell is forecasted by Surfline to peak at 6.4f 16s from 345 on Friday 8am. Good direction for the Bay.


South Pacific shows a beautiful wide fetch SE of New Zealand. Very distant though, so only a couple of feet of long period swell predicted by Surfline in a week.


Morning sky.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Monday 10 16 17 morning call

A surf session and another north shore downwind foiling attempt for me yesterday. Here's the howling wind at Ukumehame on my way to work.


 My second downwind attempt was even worse than the first one. The water was just too rough to even catch a glide on a bump on the inside of the reef (trust me, you didn't want to cross it). I did get the foil out once, but it was by complete chance as a big bump appeared behind me and pushed the board making the foil come out, but I was unprepared and managed to control it just for a few yards before falling. My next attempt will be in Kihei, whenever the conditions will arise. In the meantime, foiling on small waves remains a lot more fun way to practice.

Talking about practice, tons of windsurfers are doing that at Hookipa in view of the upcoming Aloha Classic of which I'm happy to report the press release:

Riders are set to travel from across the globe for the final, and biggest, event of the 2017 IWT season which takes place from October 29th until November 12th.

Here's a photo by Jimmie Hepp from this gallery that shows the remarkable size of the waves.


4am significant buoy readings
South shore

W
5ft @ 14s from 101° (ESE)

SW
4.3ft @ 15s from 151° (SSE)

SE
3.7ft @ 15s from 176° (S)

Solid numbers at the outer buoys. As usual, disregard completely the directions, as they are influenced by the very strong windswell hitting the buoys. Without local south facing buoys (like Barbers and Lanai), the only way to guess the direction of a south swell is to remember the position of the fetch. Below is the collage of the maps of October 8,9,10 and 11 that shows that we're now receiving the angular spreading of a massive fetch aimed at Central America, while later on we'll receive a more direct swell from a smaller fetch oriented towards us.


"but you don't say how big it's gonna be!" is a comment I hear often about my analysis.
Well, the buoys tell us what's in the water. In this case it's a 4-5f 14-15s swell and that would make for well overhead waves in case of a direct hit. But Maui has Kahoolawe blocking some of the southerly energy, so the real size will depend a lot on that. I don't feel like guessing it, specially because we don't have exact information about the direction. The beach reports are the ones that report the observed size. In the meantime, just live with the information provided: there's gonna be waves on the south shore today.

North shore
Waimea
3.6ft @ 14s from 321° (NW)

Mokapu
8.8ft @ 10s from 58° (ENE)

Pauwela is not reported again by the Surfline buoy page, but we can look at Mokapu (closest east facing buoy) to gather that the windswell is pumping at around 9f 10s. Is it still windswell at 10s?
Scientifically, there's no difference between wind and ground swell. It's just a convention to call it windswell when the period is below 10 and ground swell when it's above. And that does make for quite a few differences, which are explained in this article on Surfline.

As reported by the Waimea buoy, there's also a moderate NW swell in the water, which I forgot to mention yesterday (it wasn't showing yet at the NW buoys when I made the call).

The fetch that made it is in picture below from October 11.


So a pumping windswell and a moderate NW swell will make for another day of big rough waves on the north shore.

The waves will be rough because of the strong wind that will blow again as depicted by the wind map at noon.


North Pacific shows a NW and the windswell fetch.


South Pacific shows a strong fetch oriented towards South America of which hopefully we'll get some angular spreading. My faith in the angular spreading of big swells aimed somewhere else has increased lately, seen the waves we received in the past weeks out of fetches that were oriented similarly. This is not an exact science, you guys. That's why experience and local knowledge are so important in making the right call.


Morning sky.


Sunday, October 15, 2017

9am other than launiupoko a bit slow,  the traffic isn't bad at all and they're removing the cones already. The wind is the problem. Bit all over the place, but you can get lucky. Heard kihei get waves and no wind

6 30am lahaina has waist high waves with occasional bigger sets and sickness in the water. ukumehame windy. Traffic on the Pali and the rest of the highway will be a nightmare because of a marathon. Front street is closed. Didn't look at Hookipa

Sunday 10 15 17 morning call

I did a bit of everything yesterday: shortboard surfing, SUP foiling and even a super fun 20 minutes (that's how long the moderate sideon wind lasted) windfoiling session at Thousand Peaks. That was a first.

In 2004 Pete Cabrinha Billabong XXL award (and a $70,000 check) for riding a 70 feet wave at Jaws.


Now he chases one foot waves at Thousand Peaks with his Kai GoFoil. Remember, don't look at it with the eyes of the surfer. As long as you see someone up on his foil, he's having fun.




The winswell is pumping, look at the size of that wave in the afternoon at Hookipa! Photo by Jimmie Hepp from this gallery.


4am significant buoy readings
South shore

W
1.6ft @ 18s from 135° (SE)

SW
2ft @ 13s from 145° (SE)
1.4ft @ 17s from 45° (NE)

SE
2.8ft @ 14s from 185° (S)

New long period southerly energy recorded by a couple of outer buoys (the NE direction at the SW buoy is completely wrong as the buoy is heavily confused by the strong windswell), while a background 13-14s energy is still there. The waves on the south shore might be influenced too by the windswell and the local wind might easily be influenced by the strong trades. It's gonna be hard to find clean conditions, but there might be spots/moments of clean conditions.

North shore
Pauwela
7.2ft @ 10s from 44° (NE)
4.7ft @ 7s from 64° (ENE)
 
Pumping windswell on tap for the north shore.

Wind map at noon shows strong easterly trades.


North Pacific shows a tiny and weak NW fetch and a big and strong windswell one.


South Pacific looking good with a strong fetch partially oriented towards us. 2f 16s predicted by Surfline in a week.


Morning sky looks relatively clear, but the trades wind will bring squalls.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

7 30am lahaina has waist high waves and clean conditions. ukumehame had a bit of sickness on it, but no wind. Hookipa looked at least head high and not too messy from the distance.

Saturday 10 14 17 morning call

Another absolutely lovely SUP foiling session for me in conditions that I would have not even taken into consideration for regular surfing. I live very close to Hookipa and since I got the foil bug, I'm not even looking at it anymore. Might have to move somewhere else at one point...

I don't have a photo of the day, so I'm gonna use one of those mesmerizing images of Teahupoo by Ben Thouard. Not exactly a foiling wave.


5am significant buoy readings
South shore

SW
2.6ft @ 14s from 179° (S)

SE
2.3ft @ 14s from 160° (SSE)
Still southerly energy at the outer buoys, the south shore will have waves also today. It's been a very good week there. Next week should be even better.

North shore
Pauwela
8.3ft @ 9s from 60° (ENE)

Good news: the Pauwela buoy wasn't down, it was only not reported at the time I checked it yesterday. The windswell is pumping and the north shore had some sizey waves yesterday with an additional northerly component that I don't see on any buoy today. But 8f 9s from 60 will still make for confused high breakers on the north shore today.

Here's the summary for the day from the NOAA page for Oahu:
Rough and choppy short-period surf will continue along east facing shores for most of the next week. A long-period south swell will gradually build through Sunday, and surf heights are expected to reach advisory levels along south facing shores late Sunday through Monday as the swell peaks. A small northwest swell is expected Sunday and Monday, with a slightly larger north-northwest swell possible from late Thursday into Saturday. Another south swell is possible next weekend.
Wind map at noon shows again easterly trades.



North Pacific shows a strong windswell fetch.


South Pacific shows a strong fetch oriented towards the Americas of which hopefully we'll get some angular spreading.


The big clouds moved away, morning sky looks pretty clear.

Friday, October 13, 2017

8am ukumehame has now howling offshore winds. No idea about lahaina. There were some beautiful very long period sets.

6am ukumehame has inconsistent knee to waist high sets.

Friday 10 12 17 morning call

Another double SUP session for me yesterday. Great fun and practice for the upcoming downwinders, I was able to pump my way all the way to the beach a few times. This video below shows Dave Kalama doing what I hope to be doing next week. I know it looks a lot easier than it is and it doesn't even look that easy at all. Lots of cardio and legs.
Btw, this is the first time since 2001 (my first year here, in which I didn't know better how bad that ususally turns to be for windsurfing) that I'm excited about a strong wind forecast!


The sky cleared up quite nicely after the big rain yesterday afternoon. Sunset photo by Jimmie Hepp shows Molokai in the background.


3am significant buoy readings
South shore

SW
1.8ft @ 14s from 161° (SSE)

SE
2.2ft @ 13s from 171° (S)

Still some southerly energy at a couple of outer buoys, more action on the south shore today. Yesterday it was good all day knee to occasionally belly high.

North shore
NW101
4.6ft @ 11s from 29° (NNE)

N
9.3ft @ 8s from 79° (ENE)

Waimea
4.1ft @ 9s from 14° (NNE)
2.4ft @ 11s from 10° (N)
1.1ft @ 13s from 10° (N)

Mokapu
5ft @ 9s from 58° (ENE)
2.6ft @ 11s from 35° (NE)
 
Bad news: the Pauwela buoy is down.
Looking at the reported buoys, we can guess that today there will be some considerable easterly windswell energy with the addition of a bit of northerly energy too. Can't be more specific without the local data and won't be able to post a beach report from Hookipa, as I have a work appointment at 6am on the other side.
 
Wind map at noon shows esterly trades.


North Pacific shows a strong winswell fetch. Bumps are forming out there.


South Pacific shows a strong fetch aimed to central America of which we should get some angular spreading.


Morning sky still shows the massive cloud north of us pouring down rain. Keep an eye on it (link n.6 ).