Saturday, April 16, 2016

4 16 16 morning call

The swell picked up a little earlier and a little bigger than I thought yesterday and the action at Hookipa was intense.
Photo by Jimmie Hepp.

As soon as I realized that, I adapted my plans and timed a surf and windsurf session to perfection before the waves got out of control. Then I watched and took pics for an hour, it was too good to pass. These are the best two and both of them show Kai Lenny.

Wasn't the swell supposed to peak Saturday morning? That's what it would seem if you merely look at the size numbers of the Surfline forecast below. But also in this field (or specially, I should say) size is not everything and we need to take into account also the period. Hovering with the mouse over the arrowed points would give you a complete reading and for those two points I marked, that was:
A) 2pm Friday: 4.5f 18s from 315
B) 8am Saturday: 7.8f 15s from 313
Now, which one will result in bigger waves?

I refuse to use formulas when it's down to this. They're not accurate, at least not consistently accurate.
I'll go by personal knowledge/experience and, despite the shorter period (which gets amplified less when it hits the reef), a swell like B should still generate bigger waves at Hookipa that a swell like A.

So is this morning going to be bigger than yesterday afternoon?
Nope, because yesterday's forecast wasn't correct. Yesterday afternoon Waimea recorded readings like 7f 18s and that is a hell lot bigger than predicted.

Here's the latest buoy readings (probably 4-5am, the time stamp is not correct) and graphs:
7.7ft @ 15s from 306° (WNW)
4.2ft @ 10s from 85° (E)

6.9ft @ 15s from 320° (NW)

from which we can be sure that the swell did peak yesterday. Look how steady the size is at the NW buoy, while the period slowly goes down. That's easy to compare: same size, smaller period (and same direction!) makes for smaller waves on the reef.
7f 15s is still a solid size though, so the Butterfly Effect ladies should use caution.

MC2km map at noon shows ligther and more onshore wind than the past week. Not sure windsurfing will happen at Hookipa, but with the skill level in the water these days, everything is possible.

Wind map shows another strong NW fetch and a weak leftover N one. The swell being generated by the first one will rise all day Wednesday up to 8f 15 from 317 during the night. The forecast graph looks a lot like the one of the current swell and that's because the fetches looks a lot alike. We'll see.

No fetches down south today, I'm still trying to trace that SE pulse, but the readings of most buoys are now masked by the strong NW energy in the water. Here's one though at the SE Hawaii buoy: 1.8ft @ 12s from 164° (SSE). Nothing to be excited about, but I'd check the lahaina camera to see what's going on on that side, if you don't feel like challenging the big waves on the north shore. Btw, Interscholastic Surf Contest at Lahaina harbor this morning organized by Hi-Tech. That's the shop where I work and I consider myself very lucky for that.

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