Tuesday, October 27, 2015

10 17 15 morning call

Fun waves on both shores yesterday, and today is the start of a week of big waves on the north shore.

Gonna jump straight into the buoys.

Here's the graph of the NW one.

Doesn't really show, but yesterday evening it was "only" reading 10f 11s from 360. This morning at 4am it reads:
8.5ft @ 14s from 349° (NNW)         
4.9ft @ 10s from 11° (NNE)
4.2ft @ 18s from 356° (N)

Here's how Pat Caldwell explained so many different periods and the arrival of the short period first.

"A tropical depression fed a deepening mid latitude low pressure near the dateline late Friday 10/23 as it raced NNE and dropped sharply in central pressure near 40°N, 165°W. It reached hurricane force by Saturday night for the area north of 45°N, with gales north of 35°N, and near gales to 30°N, all aimed at Hawaii, late Saturday into Sunday morning.
The closer, near gale to gale winds over the 330-350 degree band should build the surf locally Monday night with moderate wave periods, climbing near to above the north shore, October to March, seasonal average Tuesday morning.
The primary wave energy is expected from the remote, stronger winds. Ascat satellite Saturday night and Sunday showed a large area of severe gale to hurricane force winds north of 40°N. Highest seas were aimed just east of Hawaii. Jason altimeter measured seas of within 30-35 feet at 06Z 10/26 over a region estimated to be near 25 feet by the Wave Watch III model, ww3. Historically, ww3 has under-estimated the swell prediction for the Waimea buoy output point from winter-caliber systems east of the dateline. Given the jason validation, the possibility of ww3 underestimating the event is even higher.
The long period swell from the remote source should build the surf rapidly mid Tuesday afternoon. This component of the swell should be from within 345-360 degrees, with the angular spreading component due to swell trains missing Hawaii to the east adding energy from 350-010 degrees.
The event should peak overnight Tuesday night at extra-large levels, meaning high enough for breakers on select outer reefs. The full moon high tide of 2.4 feet, one of the astronomically higher tide levels of the year, should see the maximum in the coastal wave run-up in the wee hours early Wednesday pre-dawn.
Heights should remain above average Wednesday, then fall below average by Thursday as it rapidly fades out from 340-010 degrees. "

He's amazing at putting into words complicated weather maps, I just don't understand why he has to do that in this day and age.
I don't personally complain because for me it's like poetry and I thoroughly enjoy the mental exercise to try to picture the fetches he's talking about, but if he would just have the possibility to use a chart and put a couple of arrows here and there, it would be a lot easier to understand.
Like the one below with the giant screaming octopus.
Anyway, if some of you are interested in learning more about wave forecasting, uncle Pat is a must-read.

And after reading that, I must take back what I wrote yesterday and trust his knowledge and believe that this swell is going to be too big to be sailable at Hookipa on Wednesday for the first day of the Aloha Classic. It will depend a lot on the wind too, of course, so maybe I should stop guessing and just wait for the day.
The contest waiting period lasts until Nov 10, so plenty more days and there's still time to sign up for the contest. For example you could do that tonight at the registration party at the Paia Bay coffee.

More buoys:
7ft @ 13s from 337° (NNW)
3.9ft @ 11s from 341° (NNW)
3.4ft @ 10s from 338° (NNW)
2.9ft @ 7s from 347° (NNW)
4.5ft @ 7s from 357° (N)
4.2ft @ 10s from 29° (NNE)
4.2ft @ 14s from 335° (NNW)
0.8ft @ 22s from 352° (N)
3.6ft @ 15s from 190° (S)
1.4ft @ 12s from 245° (WSW)
1.1ft @ 7s from 298° (WNW)
Still relatively small numbers in Maui, but as you can guess from both the NW buoy graph and the 7f 13s reading at Waimea, that is going to change soon.

Epic day on the north shore? Not even close. Gonna be sideon and ugly. The wind map 2pictures below shows a wide WNW fetch still pumping waves for Thursday/Friday's WNW swell and the wind direction on the islands.
Windsurfers might still be able to enjoy it, especially if they take a close look at the MC2km map at 3pm.

In the meantime, let's not forget about the south swell. 3.6f 15s is once again a serious reading for a south swell. Unfortunately that is in Oahu and lately Maui has seen much smaller sizes than that. But it's still far from flat, that's for sure.

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