The relative lack of land mass in the Southern Hemisphere mutes the seasonal extremes surfers from Northern latitudes suffer, and Indonesia has an ‘off season’ unrecognisable to most of us in quality and consistency. Nonetheless as today tips us into Southern Hemisphere winter the charts are lighting up on schedule with hints of some solid winter systems developing.
Magicseaweed forecaster Francisco Silva breaks the latest chart down:
“During the remaining waiting period for the Oakley Pro Bali we expect two distinct swell pulses. The first of these swell systems is forecasted to arrive on Monday/Tuesday (24th and 25th of June) and easing on Wednesday. This swell has been generated by a storm that, even though not having a vast fetch, as been following a path optimal to Indonesia, that will continue to deliver waves until the arrival of the forerunners of the following storm. From Friday (21st) until Sunday (23rd) the storm has been travelling along with the waves, which, despite not showing an impressive strong wind field, should give some consistency to Keramas in the beginning of the week.”
For Keramas the swell window is particularly important. Located to North East of the Bukit Peninsula and having Nusa Penida Island just in front and the North Western Australia to the South, Keramas is left with a relatively narrow window in which to receive direct swell from the Indian Ocean.The main swell window is between 210 and 185 degrees, but on powerful swells (far from unusual here) we can see action outside of this at reduced size. With swell direction so crucial the storm path and main travelling direction of the fetch take on increasing importance. As always we’re looking for a strong, slowly moving storm, but it’s crucial that its main wind direction at some point aligns with our ideal path. With a very narrow window swell energy lost in dispersion will have a big impact on the wave field that will hit the beach.
This event has been blessed with very good conditions, having an almost perfect large scale atmospheric configuration. We have generally seen (and will continue to see it in the remaining waiting period) two high pressure systems located over Africa and Australia extending over the Indian Ocean and creating a barrier around Madagascar’s latitude. This allows the storms to follow their normal Easterly path, but at the same time aligns them perfectly with our swell window (bear in that the Earth is not flat, take a look at the
great circles chart to see how this window extends west)”
For the end of the week a new system is on track for Indonesia, this time from a storm that is developing now further to the west. Current models indicate that we are looking at a much faster evolution system, characterized by an overall stronger wind field, but that will leave the Indo path very quickly. Nevertheless, if the storm evolves as forecasted, we could still be looking at some good conditions for the end of the contest waiting period. This swell system also looks set to offer a more favorable direction, falling within the Keramas swell window.”
“The same swell will impact the other side of the Bukit and shifts our focus to Padang Padang. We are looking at a storm that should start to develop at the end of Saturday and should continue in Indo’s path until next Monday. We are not expecting a massive storm but in the range of early season candidate swells from the build up to last years competition. On current numbers we’ll definitely see waves on the reef at Padang (and of course bigger on more exposed west facing breaks) albeit not into competition range”
Regardless the specifics we can be assured quality waves for the climax of the Oakley Pro Bali and, looking longer range, every reason for the worlds best surfers to struggle to find incentive to head to the airport once it’s over.
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