Monday, Oct. 23, 2006 | Today we have a fairly hefty mix of SW and NW ground swells along the coast. More NW swell is due this week and some smaller SW swells are due on the 27th and the 30th. We’re also keeping an eye on a southern hemi swell for the 2nd, as well as Tropical Storm Paul forming right now below Baja.

Right now, the California Buoy is checking in at 5 feet with 14-second periods. Closer to the coast, the Half Moon Bay buoy is at 9 feet with 17-second periods and Cape San Martin buoy is at 7 feet with 14-second periods.

The energy on these buoys is primarily the NW element of today’s swell combo. The southerly portion has seas running in the 3-4 foot range.

Overall, the swell energy in the water shows southerly periods averaging a very long 17 seconds from a wide angle of 215 degrees. NW periods are running 14 seconds from 305 degrees.

Note that the long-period nature of the swell energy will make for some dissimilarity in size between breaks of varying bathymetry. Spots that have steeper bathymetry that shoal well and refract the swell energy ideally will see bigger sets than the slower, longboard breaks.

Additionally, these long periods can produce some deceiving lulls at times; many waves may look surfable, while every now and then sets could roll through that produce waves far greater in size. The swell combo in the water now may also increase the risk of riptides, especially during the outgoing tides.

In SoCal, wave heights are running chest to head high at most south facing breaks with pluses running up to 2-feet overhead at times at standouts. West facing breaks are running chest high, head high though at times at dual exposure breaks. Note also that there is some island blockage affecting the OC region today due to the angle of both NW and SW swells.

Northern California and the Central Coast are seeing head high + surf at most west facing breaks, 2 feet overhead at standouts. South facing breaks are running chest to at times head high.

The tide is an issue as we are fully entrenched in a tidal swing from a New Moon that peaked Saturday. This spring tide is bringing highs well into the 6-foot range during the mid morning hours. This will…[more]

Water temperatures are averaging 65 degrees in San Diego, 64 in Orange County, 65 in LA, 65 in Ventura County, 64 in Santa Barbara, 60 along the Central Coast, and 59 degrees in NCal.

Winds as of 7:00 this morning were light and variable most everywhere. Offshore winds are expected to pick up today to around 6-9 mph, then turn lightly onshore in the late afternoon. Winds will be shifting this week as…[more]

SW about to peak…[more]

NW builds midweek…[more]

Small south swell for 27th…[more]

Small SW swell for 30th…[more]

Tracking SW for 2nd…[more]

Tracking Tropical Storm Paul…[more]

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