In the afternoon I tought a SUP lesson on the south shore and the waves were good over there too.
Talking about which, in yesterday's call I wrote:"I posted the Lanai buoy readings because uncle Pat called for 2f 16s from the SW. This below is the map of 7 days ago (march 8) and you can see the small fetch just east of New Zealand. But I don't see how the swell coming from that area can come from 235. Those 2f 14s at the Lanai buoy are clearly the wrap of the NNW swell."
Well, I was right about the small fetch east of NZ, but I was wrong about the wrap of the NNW swell (which seemed weird anyway... I just didn't know what to guess).
I did think about the cyclone Pam, but I remembered the fetch aimed to Hawaii to be too small to make those kind of waves. And I was right about that.
Well, the solution to the enigma is, like always, provided by Pat Caldwell (shoulda read it before!), who last Friday wrote:
Pam was slow-moving 3/9-11 in an area about 2400 nm away from Hawaii. The fetch aimed eastward was longer and stronger than the fetch aimed at Hawaii. Likely the swell for Hawaii is from angular spreading. Models show similar low swell holding Saturday into Monday 3/14-16.
Let's see what that means. The map below is from March 11. It was such a beauty that I made a whole post dedicated to it. This is the link to it, if you're too lazy to scroll down.
The one thing I didn't think, was what Uncle Pat described. So now I added a couple of black lines to show you what he meant. That tiny circle just below the start of the black lines is the small fetch of wind oriented towards Hawaii. But right on top of it, you can see a well bigger fetch of winds oriented towards east. Once those easterly going waves leave the fetch area, they start to spread both left and right (should be north and south). Of course the more they spread angularly, the more they lose energy. In other words, a place that is 2400nm right in front of the fetch will have waves bigger and more consistent than Hawaii. But nonetheless, there were some beautiful waist to chest high lines yesterday on the south shore.
I find those things fascinating. If you're reading this blog, maybe you do too.
Well today Lanai is reading at 7am:
2.2ft @ 14s from 235° (WSW)
1.4ft @ 9s from 268° (W)
0.8ft @ 11s from 261° (W)
0.5ft @ 3s from 184° (S)and that means that there's still waves. Which is confirmed by the lahaina webcam.
Pauwela instead is reading:
4.1ft @ 12s from 358° (N)
2.4ft @ 6s from 52° (ENE)
2.4ft @ 9s from 6° (N)
and as you can see from the photo report (post below this), it's pretty good out there, specially thanks to the early morning lack of wind.
There actually shouldn't be much wind at all all day, as the lovely light ESE flow indicated with an arrow in the map below seems to suggest.
Also notice the vast but not particularly intense fetch NW of us. That area should provide waves of 4-6f 10-12s out of around 320-330 for the whole week.
It's mid March, that's exactly what you would expect.