Tuesday, October 25, 2016

10 25 16 morning call

Yesterday I had two surf sessions. In the first one I caught 6 waves in 30 minutes at Hookipa and didn't manage to do a single turn. For the second one I went to Lahaina and did multiple turns on each single wave I caught (waist to chest high).

Jimmie Hepp didn't post an album from yesterday, so I have no idea what happened on the north shore (and couldn't care less, to be honest with you). To grab a worthy photo I so went on the page of
photographer Ben Thouard, where of course I unwillingly learned who's the new WSL world champion. Bummer, it's so difficult to stay away from these kind of news. No problem, I'll enjoy watching the Portugal contest on demand no matter what, I still don't know who won that one. I just finished France yesterday...

Here's the Tahiti shot from Ben.

3am significant buoy readings
South shore
1.9ft @ 14s from 191° (SSW)                      
0.5ft @ 20s from 274° (W)
1.9ft @ 14s from 191° (SSW)                      
1.2ft @ 18s from 325° (NW)
1.9f 14s from 191, this must be the very first time in which I see two identical readings at the two local south facing buoys! The other readings are the wrap of the WNW swell I'll talk about below and will have no effect on the waves in Lahaina. Eventually Kihei might get something, you need to check the webcams if you're interested in that.
Anyway, yesterday it was more like 1.5f 15s, so today it should be similar if not a tad bigger. I'm expecting waist to shoulder. I'll drive there for the dawn session, expect a more precise beach report (if I'll be able to see the waves in the dark...).
North shore
7.2ft @ 16s from 303° (WNW)
1.9ft @ 18s from 305° (WNW)

3.9ft @ 8s from 69° (ENE)
1.6ft @ 6s from 51° (ENE)
1.4ft @ 13s from 322° (NW)
1.2ft @ 4s from 53° (ENE)

Below is the graph of the NW (right) and Pauwela (left) buoys. The red arrows indicate that the new WNW swell went from 1f to 6 at the NW one from noon to midnight yesterday. Considering the high period (18-20), a qualitatively similar increase should happen roughly 12 hours later at the Pauwela buoy, but seen the westerly original direction (303), the size will be quite different and hard to guess. My guess is around 4f at noon in Maui, we shall see.
Btw, how come there's no long period readings at Pauwela at 4am yet? There is, but the (stupid) automatic program only picks the highest 4 readings in size. So the 1.2ft @ 4s totally insignificant reading made the cut instead of the 0.5-0.7ft @ 20s from 315° we can see from the orange line on the Pauwela graph.

Here's a map that shows that the Molokai shadow line for Hookipa is around 305 degrees. That means that Hookipa is still going to probably get some size this afternoon and tomorrow. Not a good direction for Honolua instead (I had to disappoint some excited surf rental customers yesterday by revealing them that the shadow line for the Bay is 335), but it's possible that Wednesday the swell will be big enough to wrap around Molokai and squeeze in there. I have a temporary west side informer these days, hopefully he'll send me a report (thanks countryman!). If you want to learn more about the shadowing angles here's a post you might find interesting.
And if you're not familiar with the concept of refraction, here's the couple of posts that come out if you click on the label "refraction" in the labels section of this blog.

If you don't remember the position of the fetch that generated this powerful WNW swell, here's the map of October 21st, the day of the fetch's maximum strength. Because of the block of the strong high pressure to the right of it, that low never did what most lows up there do: it never travelled east and the swell is going to stay west the whole 2-3 days that it's going to last.

Below is what Surfline predicts: 5f 15s at 8am tomorrow from 310. And that is size and direction they think it's going to have AFTER the refraction upon the upstream islands. They're usually pretty good, the Pauwela buoy will tell us in the next couple of days if they were right.
The graph also shows a pretty conservative 2.2f 18s at 2pm today. I think it might rise a bit more than that.

Current wind map shows the strong flow off Kamchatka (day 3 of that) and more northerly energy from that stubborn low up in the Gulf of Alaska. I also like that Maui is not immersed in an area of strong trades like it has been all last week. That should bring the windswell down. Only temporarily though, since the trades are about to crank up again. The forecast for the Aloha Cloassic looks really good with plenty wind and waves. Someone told me that in La Torche they got no wind insrtead.

So which of the wind models I posted yesterday was right? Well, not knowing what happened on the north shore, I'm not quite sure, but the iWindsurf graph of Hookipa yesterday seems to indicate some pretty strong wind gusting up to the 30's, and that makes me think that the best prediction was done by the HRW one.

Which is the one that I propose to you again. This is at noon today and it sure doesn't look like a particularly windy day.

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