Northwest Swell to Build Warning Level Surf

January 16, 2013, 3:48 PM HST · Updated January 16, 4:05 PM
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Ho’okipa Beach Park. File photo by Carlos Rock.

By Wendy Osher

A high surf ‘advisory’ is expected to be upgraded to a high surf ‘warning’ by Thursday night or early Friday.

On Wednesday afternoon, forecasters with the National Weather Service continued a high surf advisory for the north facing shores of Niihau, Kauai, Oahu, Molokai and Maui; and for the west facing shores of Niihau and Kauai.

The NWS advises that a “much larger” very long period northwest swell will build on Thursday, Jan. 17, with warning level conditions expected upon its arrival.

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Surf heights on Wednesday afternoon were expected to be in the 10 to 15 foot range along the north facing shores, and 10 to 12 feet on the west facing shores of the western-most islands.

The elevated surf will create strong breaking waves, shore break, beach erosion, and dangerous rip currents.

As a precaution, beach goers, swimmers, and surfers are cautioned to heed the advice of Ocean Safety officials, and exercise caution.

A friendly reminder issued by NWS officials advises the public to, “Know your limits. When in doubt…don’t go out.”

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