SWELL ALERT: Valentine's Day Sorted Thanks to Two Huge Swell Pulses


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Updated 350d ago

If you had plans for Valentine's Day this year, can it. Or, take your SO for some much needed together time in the water as the North Atlantic is going to be hyper-active in the next few days.

Hot from the last pulse of swell (courtesy of Storm Ciara), we're getting ready for another rifle shot to the heart of Euro surfing, as a new system tears through the Atlantic towards the UK. Kind of like in 2018 when a similar system tore into Europe as well, see HERE.

Forecast: UK + Ireland

Then we are faced with this on Saturday February 15. See the charts, HERE.

Then we are faced with this on Saturday February 15. See the charts, HERE.

“The North Atlantic is still extremely active, with a strong, meanderless upper airstream that is expected to stay that way until at least early next week,” says MSW forecaster Tony Butt.

See the North Atlantic swell chart, HERE

“On the surface there are two developing lows. The first is currently east of Newfoundland, moving steadily east-northeast and deepening, expected just west of Ireland by Thursday; and the second one right behind it, deepening explosively and expanding as it moves east from Nova Scotia on Wednesday and then arcs north, expected south of Iceland by Friday.

“Both these systems, particularly the second one, will generate more massive swell for west and northwest exposures, with stormy conditions in northern and mid areas, and cleaner conditions from Biscay southwards.

“The largest open-ocean wave heights will be in the northwest, but accompanied by the windiest conditions. At Mullaghmore the swell jumps to over 20 feet by early Saturday, holding steady and then increasing further during Sunday and holding through Monday. Winds are southwest at first, veering west later, strong to gale force.

We gonna see more of this soon? Potentially.

“In Devon, Cornwall and Wales, expect a similar pattern, with the first pulse hitting early Saturday, overlapped by a second, larger one on Sunday which continues through Monday. Wave heights at the most exposed spots peak at 15 feet or more and winds are southwest gradually veering west, strong to gale-force.

“Further south in Biscay things are not quite so hectic. A very long period initial swell arrives on Saturday, with periods over 20 secs and wave heights increasing during the day. Exposed reefs will really make the most of the period, hitting 15 feet or more, with light to moderate southwest winds. On Sunday the swell increases a notch and continues through Monday, perhaps exceeding 15 feet at the most exposed reefs, with fresh southerly winds, decreasing later.

“Down at Nazaré the very long period initial swell arrives early Saturday, pushing wave heights to well over 20 feet during the day, holding through Sunday and into Monday as the second pulse overlaps the first. Winds are light and variable for most of the time. The swell direction is a little more west than Tuesday’s swell.”

Tony's near-future prediction? “In the long-term, things could go either way; some models are showing a meander beginning to form in the upper airstream next week, while others showing a continuation of fluid conditions.”