Maui Surf

Windy Trades Produce East Swell, Friday Forecast

December 13, 2012, 5:11 PM HST
* Updated December 13, 5:20 PM
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By Carlos Rock

Looks windy. Click to enlarge.

Windy conditions prevail as strong trade winds in the 15-30+ mph range also produce east swell for Maui.

The east facing shores and reefs on Maui actually benefit from the extremely windy conditions lately as a combined NE swell was on tap to produce waves in the 5-9 ft range.

The only downside is the strong onshore wind and the crowds. There are only a few spots that are actually still surf-able with the wind swell, spots that are off the beaten path.

The breezy conditions are not all that bad as they keep the island cool and also bring in some much needed rain typical of winter time in Hawai’i. It sure makes it easy to sleep at night with the cool windy weather and knowledge of a good swell as a direct result.

Windy conditions usually mean east swell. Click to enlarge.

So with this knowledge and the right equipment, the island of Maui is subject to some type of surf year round, meaning it is possible to surf every day of the year. That is why it is important to have a range of boards to be able to ride all types of conditions from the perfect and glassy overhead high days, to windy blown out and choppy, to knee high fun ones in Lahaina.

Surfers tend to live one swell at a time, and for now, this windy east swell is what is available this winter.

Unfortunately the east swell doesn’t do much for the North Shore, but spots at Ho’okipa do wrap some of the east swell into the reefs there, keeping surfers happy while a new WNW swell develops for Friday (12/14).

Pipeline. Photo: Heff.

This new WNW swell is set to finish up the Billabong Pipeline Masters on the north shore of Oahu.

 Hopefully this same WNW swell direction will also materialize here on Maui and we avoid a repeat of the last swell. Only time will tell.


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