Friday, December 12, 2014

Winter Swells Arrive to SD Beaches

Finally, we get some solid winter swell energy unloading at our W/NW Exposed reefs and beaches!

December 12, 2014
By Chris Racan

Over the past few days we have seen some solid energy from a NPAC storm system that passed our swell window a few days ago...Weekend Outlook.
Cardiff By The Sea, Winter Swell
Friday-Sunday(12/12 - 12/14) will offer up a mixture of size and conditions as our local storm system clears out leaving the new W/WNW swell close on it's heals. The best size and conditions will be Saturday morning if you knew where to be.  Beach breaks will be hollow and closed out with the mid-long period swell.  reefs will be the best shape/size with the morning offshore winds. Sunday will still have plenty of swell leftovers and as the period falls off a bit we could see some better conditions at the beach breaks. 

Short-Range Forecast - Week of December 15th 2014
Look for waves to continue to be solid all week next week.  We may see a slight drop off Monday before our next swell fills in more on Tuesday.  Will actually be a much needed rest day for our noodle arms after this current swell. 

Swell model forecast, as of 12/12/2014

Long-Range Forecast - End of Month, December 2014
NPAC is busy spinning up some nice storms which will send us some decent energy by mid-week next week and keep swell back to back lined up through at least the end of the month.  
THERE'S A BIG ONE OUT THE BACK! Christmas Swell 2014!
Check out the forecast...If the swell models hold true we will be looking at a solid swell producing storm to enter our swell window by next weekend and holding a really nice direction pushing right at So Cal for 5-7 days straight!  LOOK OUT LA JOLLA COVE!!  Merry Christmas to all if this holds true sending us a SOLID Christmas swell 2014.  Fingers crossed!

As always, stay tuned for more updates and stay Stoked! 

Billabong Pipe Masters - Live Now

Soggy, SW/S wind batting down our new shot of W/WNW swell.  Look for cleaner conditions late today with better conditions Saturday morning.  Could see some large sets!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Bad Swell Mix with worse conditions coming.

Well, bad now but gets even worse soon. This weekend we will have a small mix of NW wind swell around 2-3' @ 10 seconds which may peak up a bit for Sunday but still looking at soft, waist-chest high surf if your lucky enough to find it. Mix that with some early May Grey and your left with a recipe for couch potato syndrome for the weekend. Wish I had good news to report for forecast but looks like this windswell will fade as we approach mid-week with literally nothing behind it. Next weekend we see good weather but 0 surf! There is a little S-SE swell running but it is pretty much passing SD completely.

Good luck and happy hunting if your taking you 10'0" out for a spin.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

San Diego Surf Forecast - Mid March 2013

Last Weekend Hopefully Left You Surfed Out and Now Resting in Preparation of Some New South Swells on the Horizon!   SPAC Heats up early in March to Send us some fun Surf.

March 13, 2013
By Chris Racan

Last Weekend we saw waves nearly everywhere as we got a nice warm-up shot of SPAC energy and a healthy dose of NPAC Mid-period energy.  
Cardiff By The Sea, CA
Thursday-Saturday (3/7 - 3/9/13) offered up the best size and conditions if you knew where to be.  Now we are left with the dwindling energy from a storm that was brewing nicely in the NPAC but got completely blown to pieces before it entered our swell window.  The good news is that the SPAC is churning out some early season storms that will surely send us some really great energy, although it may come as steep, long-period, south but never-the-less we will get waves at our south facing breaks come mid next week.

Short-Range Forecast - Mid week through weekend of March 18th 2013
The near future is looking very grim as far as waves are concerned in SD as we await the energy from the SPAC system to slowly roll it's wait north to us.  This week we will have only remnant wind swell hitting our beaches through the work week with the best chance at something fun to ride being on Saturday, but even Saturday is looking like chest high surf will be a lucky find!  This week is a great chance to get your spring clean-up done, take the kids to the zoo, splurge some time with your wife/sweetheart or both and save the surf excuses for later in the month.  At any rate if you must get wet be sure to bring your biggest/thickest board, hopefully you have a 12'0" laying around.

Long-Range Forecast - March 19th and beyond
South Swell @ Black's Beach - La Jolla, CA
SPAC is busy spinning up a nice storm which will send us some decent energy by mid-week next week.  Look for forerunners to show up at select south facing beaches by Tuesday afternoon and then the bulk of the energy to show through Friday at least.  This swell is marching a long way to grace our beaches and it is coming from a rather preferred angle for south swells.  Look for the bulk of the swell to arrive from 195-205 degrees at around 3-4' @ 16-18 seconds.  This will look like overhead, clean, groomed lines at south facing spots.  There is bad news though... Weather is looming.  A storm system is set to come ashore central/southern California at about the same time as the bulk of this south swell so conditions will be hit or miss.  be sure to time your break right for best conditions.  

As always, stay tuned for more updates and stay Happy! 

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Surf Forecast & Update - Beginning of March 2013

March is setting up to bring some fun swells to San Diego and beginning this weekend with our first shot of South Swell for 2013

By Chris Racan

I hope you all have been getting your share of waves over the first two months of the year as there have been plenty of waves to be had.  In fact, I can't recall a day that wasn't surf able.

Looking ahead we are seeing the SPAC start to produce some favorable storms that will turn on our South swell maker early in the year.  Plus, there is still a great deal of energy aloft in the NPAC to keep us getting some smaller winter swells as well.  March is historically great for pulsing in those glassy AM combo swells that we all love so much.

Short-Range Forecast - Weekend of 3/1/13-3/3/13
March Combo Swell - Small but look at the shape!
The weekend will start out with some long period south swell gracing our beaches with energy likely to be showing up around 2-4' @ 16-18 seconds from 190-210 degrees.  I would definitely suggest getting to your south swell spots and checking out how the sand has shifted.  Some breaks will be phenomenal and others might need some serious South energy to realign the bottom contour.  Either way this is a great little bit of energy for exploration of your favorite south swell spot.  We will also be seeing a shot of W-NW by late Friday as well.  This swell is coming from far off, deep in the NPAC, but will send us some long period swell likely peaking Saturday and showing up around 2-4' @16-18 seconds from a favorable 270-280 degrees.  Combo conditions will be in full effect Saturday and with the forecast of 80 degree weather and offshore we could be in for a heck of a fun day in the water if you know where to go!
Where to surf this weekend:  Ocean Beach, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, La Jolla Shores, BLACKS, Torrey Pines, Del Mar (21st St), D Street, Ponto, and Oceanside.

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Long-Range Forecast - 3/4/13 and Beyond
Swell Forecast for Monday 3/4/13 
Out the Back!  There looks to be some really good energy lining up in both the NPAC and SPAC for us.  we should be in store for surf able conditions for the foreseeable future.  There may be a brief shot of cold/weather later in the week next week but other than that a combo of South and North swells should be marching in to our beaches in pretty nice succession and with moderate weather as well.  The best shot of swells in the near future looks to be setting up for around March 9-11 and will ikely be another, yet bigger, combo setup.  Stay tuned for more updates.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

O' Winter Where art Thou... Dismal Forecast for Surf in San Diego

Not Much In the Water with Regards to Surf! :(

I hope you have been getting your share of these past swells that have been littering our coast since the beginning of the year because the short-range forecast looks pretty bleek.  That being said we have been scoring some pretty nice conditions and sneaky size over the past 6 weeks so we can't really complain to badly. 

Short-Range Forecast - 2/14/13 - 2/17/13
President's weekend usually draws a few extra bodies into the water to surf but this year old Abe is leaving us skunked!  Perhaps our day of observation of founding presidents of our great country are not meant to be spent surfing?  Although, I would hope that Abe and his manly facial hair dabbled in the surf way back when, or at least enjoyed a good swim in the empty waters of those days.  Never-the-less, the weekend outlook is looking bad!  Get your spring cleaning done early, go golf, or maybe go shopping but surfing will likely not be in the cards for most of us.    Through the weekend we can expect knee high surf with occasional waist high during prime tides.  Sunday afternoon looks to be the best chance of anything surf-able with a super small 1-2' @ 16 seconds swell showing up from 280-290 degrees.  If you have a 12' 0" you are in luck this weekend!

Long-Range Forecast - President's Day and Beyond
If you are lucky enough to have Monday off of work for President's Day you might want to go check out some of the outlet sales, plant your garden, fertilize your lawn, or anything other than surf.    There is not much swinging into our coast for the early part of next week.  We might see some wind/weather for Wednesday and the chance for some sloppy storm surf, if your into that and know where to score onshore bumpy swell. :)   THURSDAY morning looks to be the best chance this week to score some quality waves. Thursday am we should have offshore winds, a smallish 3-5' @ 10-12 seconds mid period swell from pretty due west (270 degrees).   Naturally, Thursday am will have a high tide of 5' to soften up the already soft wind swell but still there will be beach breaks and structures that will be able to turn this energy into ride able surf.  Friday and all the way through next weekend we see diminishing conditions again and nothing much to report.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

San Diego Surf Forecast - Jan 30 2013

Winter is still here with cold water, chilly mornings, and FUN W-NW swells on tap.
January 30, 2013 - By Chris Racan

Blacks Beach, La Jolla, California - January 2013
Can you believe the first month of 2013 is almost finished?  Overall, 2013 has blessed San Diego with some fun surf so far.  There is currently some mid period swell in the water showing up at our W-NW facing beaches at about chest high with occasional plus sets.   If you have a good winter wet-suit then you have hopefully been scoring the offshore morning sessions as they have been a blast!  But, since I haven't seen that many people out for the early am sessions I can only draw on 2 conclusions; either everyone has no job and is surfing later in the day when it gets warmer, or no one has a good wet-suit and have been opting out of the chilly morning sessions.  Either way, there has been great conditions overall for us here in SD.

Short-Range Forecast
Swell map forecast for Sunday (2/3/13)
Looking ahead we have a nice swell on tap for us as we head into Sunday/Monday which will bring some long period W-NW swell to our beaches with best size/conditions for Monday morning likely.  Sunday will have the longest period as the swell builds up its momentum in front of the full force on Monday but that will mean long waits and as usual an over hyped crowd at most breaks for Sunday.  Look for the buoys sunday to be showing 4-6' @ 16-20 seconds from 280-300 and then Monday buoys are forecast to be showing 3-5' @ 14-18 seconds from 280-290.  This swell will leave leftovers for Tuesday and some marginal wind swell for Wed next week.

Shop for the Holidays at Surf Fanatics!

Long-Range Forecast
Swell map forecast for Wednesday (2/6/13)
A second storm system is set to build and pass through our swell window for a few days with winds aloft around 40-60Knts which could send us a really nice swell starting Thursday and peaking next weekend (2/8 - 2/10/13).  If the storm follows the preferred course, as predicted, then this swell will have more energy than the past few we have seen and will come with a favorable 270-280 degree angle.  Stay tuned for further developments on this system.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Long Period Swell on Tap for the Weekend - Surf Forecast for 11/18/13

"Whistle While you Work..." This will likely be the tune that comes to mind for all of us who will be in the water awaiting the super long period W-NW sets we are expecting this weekend.

Mavericks Invitational is slated to run this Sunday 1/20/2013
Check out these long periods!  24 seconds hitting SoCal?  Crazy
The waves have been near flat for almost a week here in SD leaving most of us frothing for something to ride.  There is a swell headed our way for the weekend but it might not be the macking swell we all want.  The swell is going to have some really long period energy (20-22 seconds) which will send in some good waves but only to select spots and at really long intervals.  look for 20-30 minute lulls between sets all weekend long and sometimes a bit longer as the forerunners show up on Saturday.  The tail end of the swell will hopefully be better suited as the period falls off to 18 seconds by late Sun/Mon, but even then, the size of this swell will play a detrimental  role in the fact that we will likely only see 2-3' of energy from this swell. Which would translate to 4-6' faces with the occasional standout 8' (set wave) during the inconsistent sets.  However, the spots that like this type of energy will have some super good sets coming through if you know where to be!  Get into your 5/4, booties, and hood to wait out the long lulls that this type of swell usually has.  These are the swells that really demand local knowledge of where to be, what tide, and especially where to sit in the lineup to assure you are next up for the long period set waves.  Hope you had followed my instruction from past posts on really getting to know your spot! If you line all of this up correctly, while dodging the crowds, then you will score some good waves this weekend.
Where to surf this weekend - Terra mar, Grand-view, Swamis, Cardiff, Blacks, La Jolla Reefs, South Mission Jetty, Sunset Cliffs, Little Waimeas, and BAJA!

Looking ahead - Long-Range Surf Forecast

Billabong at
Multiple storms on the horizon in the NPAC...
The long period swell that will hit our coast starting Saturday will last through Tuesday of next week at least. After this storm grooms the NPAC for us with its incredibly long period we will see a few storms brew up right behind it.  Looks like winter storm patterns will kick back into gear with storm after storm whipping off the coast of Japan and up into the Bay of Alaska.  The direction of these storms will play a huge role in just how large the swells will be that hit our coast but at least there will be enough energy to keep us surfnig through the end of January.   The SPAC has some minor storms brewing as well but unfortunately there will not be enough storm energy to send much our way in terms of surf.  February is notorious for spitting out some size able South swells for us but this season it is not looking so hot.  But, the NPAC will be seasonally more active then usual!

Stay tuned and as always stay stoked!

Surf Travel and Board Bag Fees Explained...

Surf Travel and Board Bag Fees Explained...

It is out there!  Go find it...
Every winter when the weather and water gets colder here in Southern California we are always feeling that urge to get on a plane to somewhere tropical with blue water and warm waves.  The daily grind of 4/3 suits with booties and hoods gets old really fast!  When exploring options for a tropical getaway it is important to factor in the travel fees associated with lugging your coffin bag on board with you.  We also know that travelling for surf can sometimes be super expensive, even if the destination itself could cost merely $10/day to live/surf, the airlines love surfers because they can rape us in baggage fees.  I have spent a lot of time travelling as a surfer and being on a plane almost every week from country to country with your boards can really rack up some coin!  Whether you are going to Costa Rica, Mexico, Hawaii, Bali, or beyond it is always nice to know what to expect in terms of costs.

Easy trips can be had from LAX airport for relatively cheap so start by researching surf spots that you want to check out, then research flight costs, and then finally look into access/hotels.  Often times I have found that you will get much better deals, location, pricing, etc when you land in the area you want to explore and find a local hotel.  This is not always possible, based on locale, so be sure to look into it further before you just hop a flight to Fiji and find that you are screwed.  But, most places have resources available that cannot be found online and have the best bang for their buck.  Example, Las Flores in El Salvador has a few plush hotels you can book (Las Flores Surf Lodge, Mira Flores, etc) but if you want there are cheaper options thatare closer to the break (on the sand), much cheaper ($5/night vs. $200/night), and a much closer feel of the culture of the place.  Just do your homework before you go. :) 

Below you will find a list of major airlines and their baggage fees, surfboard fees (either by board or bag), and some important notes.  Hopefully, this will help you when selecting the appropriate airline for your next surf adventure.  
Note - My personal favorite is Singapore Airlines.  Not only are their destinations they connect you with awesome but they have impeccable service and $0 board bag fees!  Go to Bali :)

Women's Swimwear

Aeromexico $0 $0 $76/bag Max length: 9′
Air Canada $0-$25 $35-$100 $50/board WILL NOT accept bags over 6’6″
Air France $0 $75-100 $55-150* *Depending on destination
Air New Zealand $0 $150 $0* *Free if only checked bag, otherwise $150/bag
Air Pacific $0 $0 $50/bag Max length: 9’6”
Air Tahiti Nui $0 $75 $0* If under 6’6″. If over, $150/bag.
American (US or PR) $25 $35 $150/bag Max weight: 70 lbs.
American (to/from Mexico) $0 $40 $150/bag Max weight: 70 lbs.
American (to/from Europe) $0 $60 $150/bag Max weight: 70 lbs.
Alaska Airlines $20 $20 $50/bag up to 6’6″, $75/bag 6’7″+ Max length: 115 in (length X width X height)
British Airways $0 $0 $0* *WILL NOT carry boards over 6’3″
China Airlines $0 $0 $150/board for under 9′, $225/board for 9′+* Varies slightly by destination
Continental (US, PR, Canada) $25 $35 $100/bag* *$200 if over 70 lbs.; Max length: 9’6″
Continental (International) $0 $40 $200/bag* *$400 if over 70 lbs.; Max length: 9’6″
COPA $0 $0 $75/bag* *Two boards max per bag
Delta Airlines (within US and Canada) $25 $35 $150/bag* *2 boards per bag max; Max size: 9’6″ and 70 lbs.
Delta (to/from Caribbean) $25 $40 $150/bag* *2 boards per bag max; Max size: 9’6″ and 70 lbs.
Delta (to/from Europe, S. and Central America) $0 40-$100 $150/bag* *2 boards per bag max; Max size: 9’6″ and 70 lbs.
Delta (to/from Brazil) $0 $0 $100/bag* *2 boards per bag max; Max size: 9’6″ and 70 lbs.
Hawaiian (interisland) $17 $17 $25/bag *Two boards max. per bag
Hawaiian (to/from North America) $25 $35 $100/bag* *Two boards max. per bag
Hawaiian (International) $0 $0 $100/bag* *Two boards max. per bag
Interjet $0 $0 $0 (None)
JetBlue $0 $30 $50/board (None)
Korean Air $0 $0 $200/bag (None)
LAN $0 $0 $0* *$50 if exceeds 50 lbs.
Qantas $0 $0 $0* *If included in baggage allowance. Cannot exceed 9′
South African Airways $0 $0 $0* *WILL NOT carry boards over 6’6″
Southwest $0 $0 $75/bag (None)
TACA $0 $0 $125/bag* *Three boards max. per bag.
United Airlines (Domestic) $25 $35 $100/bag Max length: 9’6″
United (to/from Europe) $0 $100 $200/bag Max length: 9’6″
United (to/from Mexico) $0 $40 $200/bag Max length: 9’6″
United (to/from other international destinations) $0 $0 $200/bag Max length: 9’6″
US Airways (Americas) $25 $35 $200/board (None)
US Airways (Transatlantic) $0 $100 $200/board (None)
Virgin America $25 $25 $50/board *Additional charge if more than 50 lbs.
Virgin America (Domestic) $25 $25 $50/board *Additional charge if more than 50 lbs.
Virgin Atlantic (International) $0 $60 $0* *If included in baggage allowance.

Safe Travels and Happy Hunting!

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