Friday, January 13, 2017

1 13 17 morning call

I'll take the risk of becoming monotonous and will declare yesterday another fantastic day of surfing in Maui. My numbers were again 3 sessions in 3 different spots for 5 hours in the water. These photos are from Honolua where, once again, half of the set waves were 10's. Until the wind went from 5 knots offshore to 5 knots onshore around 4pm and then all of sudden they were all average.

Honolua local Ryan is always on the good ones. Kinda easy yesterday... they were all good!

Young brazialian ripper slashing the tail. He doesn't speak a word of English, and I don't speak a word of Portuguese, but we managed to have a chat in Spanish.

This guys is a tad too late and is going to get shut down.

Relaxed stance on a beautiful wave for veteran Jeff Lackey.

Here's a couple of gopro selfies.

This is how it looked after the wind switched. In the water there were two swells, a new NW one around 15-16 seconds and an old NNE one around 12-13. The NW one was bigger but definitely more west than the Honolua to Molokai shadow line which is 335. Can you tell which swell the set in the photo belongs to? Here's how you learn: you see a set, you try to guess the period and then you count the seconds between waves taking a reference point which could be a surfer in the lineup or a rock. After you do this a few times, you'll be able to immediately guesstimate the period of what you're seeing. Obviously, you can't do it with a photo, but try to guess the period of this set anyway, I'll give you the answer at the very bottom of this post.

These are Julia and Joana, two young brazialian rippers that are in Maui for training, being coached by ex pro surfer Leonardo Neves. They check the blog every morning, obrigado for that.
After filming them for hours, Leonardo got in the water to catch a few and ripped extremely hard.

As you can see from the HSA page, tomorrow Saturday Jan 14, there should be one of the two days of the "Legends of the Bay" contest. The categories involved are: Boys U12, Boys 12-13, Boys 14-15, Boys 16-17, Girls U14, Open Women & Open Longboard, while the open Men will have to wait another call for later in the waiting period.

Here's a sentence of that page that caught my attention:
Priority system is in place at HSA Maui. We will run the four man priority system at all Maui events! Please refer the WSL rules on the link to the left if you have any questions. Mahalo.

As soon as read that, I signed up in the longboard division. And then immediately after I thought:"wait a moment, this is this Saturday, the day of the huge swell!"
No big deal. If it's too big for me, I won't paddle out and I will just take photos. I won't let my judgement be influenced by the fact that I'm in the contest. As a matter of fact, if I see something really good on the way, I'll stop there and disregard the contest completely. But if I end up doing it, it'll be a nice challenge to try to stay as zen as possible towards it and not be affected at all by how I do. I'm just having fun...

Back to yesterday, the same trades that made the Bay so perfect created the conditions for an aerial fest at Hookipa and Jimmie Hepp was there to capture the action.

I'll take a couple of Meola's and a Hendrickson, please.

6-7am significant buoy readings
South shore

2.3ft @ 13s from 243° (WSW)           
1.6ft @ 9s from 229° (SW)
0.4ft @ 20s from 285° (WNW)

3.4ft @ 12s from 290° (WNW)           
2.8ft @ 8s from 175° (S)
2.1ft @ 20s from 311° (NW)

4.3ft @ 12s from 292° (WNW)
2.2ft @ 18s from 281° (WNW)
The south swell is still here, but probably down to about 12 seconds in period. All the bouys are "overwhelmed" by the big WNW swells and cannot detect it, but if you check the webcams, you'll know. The reason I reported the West buoy is because it could be that Kihei will get some of that westerly energy. There's three Kihei cams in the webcams section of this blog, please send me a message if you know of more.

North shore
12.7ft @ 19s from 267° (W)           
7.9ft @ 13s from 297° (WNW)
11.5ft @ 19s from 285° (WNW)
6.6ft @ 10s from 296° (WNW)

5.3ft @ 20s from 310° (WNW)
4ft @ 13s from 321° (NW)

3.2ft @ 13s from 320° (NW)           
3.1ft @ 20s from 307° (WNW)

3.1ft @ 12s from 350° (N)
3.0ft @ 8s from 90° (E)
3.0ft @ 14s from 325° (NW)
0.9ft @ 22s from 321° (NW)
Looks like we got some numbers to discuss here! But first let me answer that question I left open from yesterday's call. I was elaborating on the fact that the NW101 buoy went up to 11f while the Surfline forecast for Maui's offshore waters was only up to 6 feet for the day. The Pauwela below  graph is almost impossible to read, but one thing is clear: the black line (sum of all the energies in the water) didn't go much over 6 feet. Surfline was correct.
As far as today goes, the most relevant and impressive number is obviously the NW101 one: 12.7ft @ 19s from 267° (W). The close-by NW001 registers 11.5ft @ 19s from 285° (WNW) instead, and we assume that the direction is between those two. Let me remind you that straight west is 270, so this should definitely be a swell that hits places that have an opening to the west. Plus, with a size of 12f and a period of 19 seconds, this swell can sure wrap!
Here's a sentence from the post where I discuss a bunch of shadowing angles:"Google Earth shows the shadow line fromLanai to Kalama park in Kihei as 273 degrees. Anything from there to straight west, doesn't get blocked/refracted and will have a more direct impact."
Read the rest of the post if you want to dig into that deeper.

Let's talk about the timing of this extra large swell. Below is the graph of the NW101 buoy that shows a rapid rise from 2.5 to 12.5 feet in the last 12 hours. I'm not even going to try to calculate exactly the time of the equivalent rise in Maui. I will only remind you guys that the GP's rule of thumb is 12h at 18 seconds and vice versa, but... there's three buts:
1) that applies for NW directions. From a straight west it will take less time
2) the energy that's hitting the NW buoys will not be the same that will be hitting us. It would be if it came from a more traditional NW direction, but not in this case. We would need a buoy straight west of us to know what's coming. That's why I posted the readings of the W buoy. Buoys map is at link n.0 of GP's list of meteo websites on the right column of this blog
3) even if we had the exact information of what's coming towards us, good luck at calculating the energy reduction due to the refraction over the upstream islands! Hanalei is reading 5.3ft @ 20s from 310° (WNW), so I think we will definitely get something on the north shore too.

I posted the Surfline forecast yesterday and that showed a steep rise, but only in the late afternoon.
After all I saw (and wrote!), it seems to me that it might happen earlier during the day. The buoys will tell.
In the meantime, let's not forget the other two swells that Pauwela is registering:
1) 3.1ft @ 12s from 350° (N) is the old and dying northerly swell. Thank you dear, you've been awesome
2) 3.0ft @ 14s from 325° (NW) is the moderate NW swell that picked up yesterday.

Both are soon to be overwhelmed by the westerly giant. Happy hunt!
Current wind map shows:
1-2) two westerly fetches in front of each other. West is not the best direction for Maui, because of all the islands blocking, but we'll make it work
3) the hint of a trade winds windswell fetch
4) a strong Tasman Sea fetch for the pleasure of the off season Fiji guests
5) a weak south fetch that won't do anything for us, but it's there and I have this disease that makes me circle all fetches directed towards us even if they won't do nothing.

MC2km map at 8am shows beautiful light offshores for another epic morning of surfing.

MC2km map at 2pm shows those easterly trades trying to round the Pauwela point.

PS. The period of the Honolua set in the photo of the "quiz" was 12 seconds. 90% of the sets belonged to that swell. Direction is everything for that place.

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