How has this cold front brought no waves yet?! I can only surf on the weekends and its flat but it said flat today with a buoy reading of 5.4 feet. Can someone explain that to me please? Maybe Mr. SwellInfo
couple things can happen. if the system isn't offshore, it's not going to generate swell. second, system might not be strong enough to send enough swell to make it to the shore as something rideable. If it did, then you just need to check around with your eyes and make a decision from there. reports are only helpful if actually go and check.
You're paying attention to only part of what the buoy readings are telling you.
Some buoy readings like time and temperature have values that make sense all by themselves. You don't have to know any other information to understand what a water temp of 45°F at 8:50am means. Other buoy readings like wave height have both magnitude (height) and DIRECTION. One value is meaningless without the other.
Basically, there's no way a 5' swell coming out of the WNW will produce waves where you are.
There really isn't a "front" at all. We're sort of stuck under a big blob of high pressure just to our west, which is bringing down cold, continental polar air from Canada. That means northwest winds, little or no precip, and no waves. There is a weak low passing around the high to our south, but it's pressure just isn't deep enough to create any wind/fetch. That's where this little dusting of snow is coming from late today... the low bringing up some moisture from the south, interacting with the cold air being brought down from the high.
Looks like the jet stream will move a little North next week. Hopefully that will get some gulf moisture to mix with passing lows. At least that will increase the possibility of surf, if all the other factors (storm out to sea, winds, fetch, etc) play out, we could be looking good starting next week. MAYBE
ya that gets me sometimes too. i see 3 ft on the buoy and head to the beach w/o checking the swell direction. any time there's strong offshores, you have to be skeptical about what the buoy is telling you