Windsurfing, surfing, Maui, The Gorge, and random rants.

Monday, April 12, 2010

A complex forecast

[ Morning edition update - cloudy and very rainy in Makawao @ 6am. The trough is obviously still effecting us. Meanwhile the N. HI buoy (51100) is showing 10.6ft @ 15s from N (3°). That's bigger than originally forecast. So we know there will at least be waves today... ]

When I mentioned that the forecast for this week was complex, I wasn't kidding. I just read Pat Caldwell's surf forecast and I'm still trying to absorb all the details. Best to concentrate on the short term - a moderate swell is on tap for the north shore tomorrow (4/12) with 10-14 ft faces possible (the biggest sets maybe up to 16ft). But those heights reflect Oahu north shore. Lowers (which is where I plan to be if there's enough wind) will be smaller due to the direction (310-325) which means some blockage from W Maui and Molokai. Unfortunately we're going to have two other swells to contend with - another smaller short period swell from almost the same direction, and a even shorter and smaller NE swell will also be messing with us. By Thursday the charts are showing four different north-ish swells at various angles, heights, and periods.  Yikes!

OK, we wanted some waves, but one clean swell is all we really needed, thanks very much. So it should be interesting tomorrow with all these waves bouncing around. Last Nov we had a day with two largish swells from NE and N directions happening at the same time and every so often it seemed the waves would combine into a much larger then expected set. The wind was also very light and on shore and I got nailed by a big set on the inside. Tuesday's waves should be smaller and hopefully Uppers will absorb most of the NE energy so Lowers  might be a bit cleaner. Not that I'm suggesting Lowers will be better or anything like that - sometimes the outer reef at Uppers can be amazing. You never know...

And speaking of the wind, there's been a general lack of that lately. A trough (meaning cloudy crappy weather) passed over the islands today, and this typically shuts down the trades, which it did. Plus it brought frequent showers and overcast skies with it. Yesterday we headed to Hookipa hoping for perhaps our first official session there (not counting Julia's Butterfly Effect last year). But the wind never showed up. Though we did get in some fun afternoon surfing action so all was not lost. Today we had about an hour of wind on the north shore, and it actually rained in Kihei (but I guess they need some moisture down there so that's sort of good). The forecast calls for gusty north wind the next few days, and that's not so good. Northerly (as opposed to the usual ENE) wind blows out the waves and makes getting in and out a huge challenge. Plus a north wind is often not quite strong enough for Kanaha to work.

There is an alternative possibility to all this. A north wind can work at certain spots on the south shore and W Maui. Plus there's even a modest south swell happening this week (yes yet another swell but in this case a good thing). So... did I mention the forecast is complex?

Saturday @ Hookipa

Last Sat Julia and I headed to Hooks after our Uppers light wind small wave session, and conditions were quite a bit better up there. Our gorge compatriots Ingrid and Casey, who have been on Maui for over a month and are soon headed to San Carlos (nice!), had been out and apparantly had a great day of wave sailing. Trying to make up for my own personal lack of such, I took pictures of those still on the water. As you can see, not bad for a "small" day...

Jake Miller was on fire while we were watching.  One of his signature one-handed back loops...

Andre Paskowski

It's so nice to see people sharing a wave together!  I didn't see that much blood later either...

Mark Angulo

Diony Guadagnino

Patrick Bergeron

1 comment:

Roo said...

Great blog Jamin, only discovered it recently and enjoying all your posts. Looking forward to the Gorge blogs once the season starts.

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