Bali, Indonesia Surf Forecast 14 - 26 April, 2016

13 Apr 2016 0 Share

Ben Macartney

Chief Surf Forecaster

COASTALWATCH | Bali, Indonesia Surf Forecast

Forecast Issued Wednesday, 13 April, 2016

The phrase “early season” has a certain ring to it. When applied to Indonesia, it conjures up images of glassy, small to mid-sized waves rolling through sparsely populated lineups. This scenario is already being played out across Indonesian shores and it should continue for the foreseeable future as a stable pattern of light ESE winds and small-scale SSW groundswell remains in place throughout the remainder of April.

SEE ALSO: These Guys Read The Indo Forecast & Scored

It might be small, but it still looks like a whole lotta fun across Indonesia this week. Photo: Jason Corroto.

It might be small, but it still looks like a whole lotta fun across Indonesia this week. Photo: Jason Corroto.

Short Forecast
A minor rise in SSW groundswell on Friday leads in a full weekend of 2 to 4ft surf across the Archipelago preceding a slow decline setting in early to mid next week. This coincides with a continued pattern of early light and variable to ESE winds throughout the outlook period.

Daily Summary

Thursday 14
Small SSW groundswell. 1 – 2ft+ exposed breaks. Grading smaller elsewhere depending on exposure and easing into the afternoon. WIND: Early light and variable tending ESE 5 to 15 knots.

Friday 15
Long-range SSW groundswell bumps up during the day. Inconsistent 2 – 3ft sets exposed breaks, picking up to 2 – 4ft. Grading smaller elsewhere depending on exposure. WIND: Light and variable tending ESE 5 to 15 knots.

Saturday 16
SSW groundswell 2 - 4ft exposed breaks early, bumping up during the afternoon. Grading smaller elsewhere depending on exposure. WIND: Light and variable tending ESE up to 5 to 10 knots.

Sunday 17
SSW groundswell. Sets to 3 – 4ft exposed breaks, easing during the day. Grading smaller elsewhere. WIND: Light and variable tending EES around 5 to 10 knots.

Monday 18
Easing SSW groundswell 2 – 3ft+ exposed breaks. Grading smaller elsewhere depending on exposure. WIND: Light and variable tending S around 5 knots.

Tuesday 19
Small SSW groundswell. Slow 2 - 3ft exposed breaks. WIND: Light and variable tending ESE 5 to 10 knots.

Bali virtual buoy: A minor building trend in SSW groundswell should see fun-sized surf in the 2 to 4ft range prevailing across exposed breaks all weekend.

Bali virtual buoy: A minor building trend in SSW groundswell should see fun-sized surf in the 2 to 4ft range prevailing across exposed breaks all weekend.

Overview
There’s not a lot of swell on offer across the Indonesian Archipelago this week. A continued run of small-scale SSW groundswell lends the focus to the most exposed swell-magnets over the coming days and going on current long-range modelling, this pattern will remain in place right through to the end of April. Wednesday morning saw tiny levels of SSW swell running at a glassy 1 to 2ft conditions across exposed breaks like Uluwatu. This sets the trend of Thursday as a minor SSW pulse maintains similar – perhaps slightly stronger surf in the 1 to 2ft range across the region – so it’s well worth targeting swell-magnets to get the most out of this energy.

SEE ALSO: Staggering Mentawai Swell

Friday marks the arrival of a similarly small, but much longer-interval SSW pulse. This episode is projected to show at peak periods of 18 seconds throughout the day, so again, the major breaks that focus this energy will fare the best; pulling in slow sets in the 2 to 3ft range all day. The swell’s origin was a slow moving extratropical low that set up southwest of South Africa mid-last week; briefly intensifying over the weekend before weakening again as it migrated east into the southern Indian Ocean last Sunday and Monday. This broader-scale storm-system exhibited a larger, longer-lasting fetch – and this slow-burner provides a gradual building trend in surf-heights; initially bumping up on Friday and holding peak size of 3 to 4ft across exposed breaks throughout the weekend.

This episode looks like the best of a fairly ordinary bunch in the near-term. The tail end of the groundswell should scale down again by Monday; still running at a clean 2 to 3ft across exposed breaks before fading a notch into the afternoon. Tuesday then sees the arrival of a similarly small, reinforcing SSW pulse that should maintain the 2 to 3ft status quo across the region all day.

Thursday marks the arrival of a new, small-scale SSW groundswell that holds similar – perhaps slightly stronger surf-potential for the region. The source is a moderate strength polar low forecast to intensify marginally as it drifts south below Madagascar over the next 24 hours; briefly establishing a narrow belt of zonal gales over the south-western Indian Ocean on Thursday before weakening out again on Friday. This holds potential for a full day of 2 to 4ft surf across exposed breaks; speculatively peaking this size on Thursday 21 April before fading again into Friday 22 and Saturday 23.

A larger low pressure system forecast to set up over the far south-western Indian Ocean this weekend holds stronger swell-potential for Indonesia late April.

A larger low pressure system forecast to set up over the far south-western Indian Ocean this weekend holds stronger swell-potential for Indonesia late April.

Long Range
Beyond that, there’s a new swell source exhibiting slightly more promise forecast to set up below South Africa later this week before intensifying as it tracks below Madagascar this weekend. Current GFS model runs indicate the low will support a broad area of WSW gales extending west of the Kerguelen Islands throughout Sunday before weakening as the system migrates further east on Monday. This is projected to give rise to maximum seas and swell in the 30 to 35ft range below the 50S parallel over this time frame. A long-period, SSW groundswell emanating from this source is loosely projected to arrive across Indonesian coasts over the weekend of Saturday 23 April; speculatively peaking in the 3 to 5ft range across exposed breaks on Sunday 24/ Monday 25.

Based on a forecast weakening of the storm system as it migrates across the south-eastern Indian Ocean early to mid next week, an easing trend into the 2 to 3ft range will follow on Tuesday 26 – speculatively culminating in smaller 2ft leftovers by Wednesday 27 April. Given the extensive lead time on this scenario there’s still plenty of scope for revisions to these estimates in next week’s update.


 


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