Maui Surf

Record-breaking System Generates Warning Level Surf

November 10, 2014, 9:50 PM HST
* Updated November 10, 10:12 PM
Listen to this Article
2 minutes
Loading Audio... Article will play after ad...
Playing in :00

no slideshow

Warning Level Peahi Swell of January 2011 / File Photo by Wendy Osher

By Meteorologist Malika Dudley / Email: [email protected]


The National Weather Service has issued a HIGH SURF WARNING through 6:00 am Wednesday morning for surf increasing to 20+ feet overnight for the north shores of Molokai and Maui. The west side of Molokai is expected to be impacted by 12 + foot waves building overnight.

Expect ocean water occasionally sweeping across portions of beaches, very strong breaking waves and strong longshore and rip currents. Breaking waves may occasionally impact harbors making navigating the harbor channel difficult. Large breaking surf, significant shore break and dangerous currents will make entering the water very hazardous. Boaters should be aware of an increased number of surfers in the water.

A SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY is posted for the windward waters of Maui and Molokai and the Kaiwi channel through 6:00 am Wednesday. Seas of 6 to 12 feet are expected with the largest waves expected Tuesday afternoon.


This swell we create hazardous conditions for smaller vessels. Inexperienced mariners should avoid navigating in these conditions.



**Click directly on the images below to make them larger. Charts include: Maui County projected winds, forecasted swell direction, height & period, tides, a surface map and expected wave heights.**




Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 8.05.59 PMMaui County Surf Forecast

North: Surf is expected overhead to possibly double overhead or more by the end of the day today. Best breaks could see sets with 30 foot faces by sundown.

West: Breaks that don’t catch the swells are forecasted to get smaller surf at ankle high or less.  Spots that are open to the north-northwest swell will get some wrap with waves expected overhead or more at the best breaks.

South: Ankle-slappers to possibly thigh high surf is expected.

Former super typhoon Nuri made history. After becoming extratropical and merging with a frontal system a couple of days ago, the storm became the strongest non-tropical storm ever recorded in the NPAC.

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 8.06.09 PMThough we don’t expect a giant swell, the system is expected to bring us a solid large northwest swell (310-335°) building through today and tonight, peaking overnight into Wednesday with 15 to 20 foot faces, maybe even bigger sets at the best exposures possibly hitting 30 foot faces. The west side will catch a wrap at the best exposed breaks.

A series of northwest and north-northwest swells is expected to bring swell energy through the weekend with a couple of reinforcing swells showing up on models for early next week as well.

Small leftovers are expected to bring us waves in the thigh high or less range and gradually fade through the week. There isn’t much on the horizon out of the South Pacific.

Keep in mind, surf heights are measured on the face of the wave from trough to crest. Heights vary from beach to beach, and at the same beach, from break to break.

**Click here for Malika’s full Maui County weather report.**


Expected winds at 7am - Image: NOAA / NWS

Expected winds at 7am – Image: NOAA / NWS

Expected winds at 4pm - Image: NOAA / NWS

Expected winds at 4pm – Image: NOAA / NWS

NWS forecasted wave heights at 7am - Image: NOAA / NWS

NWS forecasted wave heights at 7am – Image: NOAA / NWS

Swell 1 at 7am - Image: NOAA / NWS

Swell 1 at 7am – Image: NOAA / NWS

Swell 2 at 7am - Image: NOAA / NWS

Swell 2 at 7am – Image: NOAA / NWS

Swell 3 at 7am - Image: NOAA / NWS

Swell 3 at 7am – Image: NOAA / NWS

Surface map - Image: NOAA / NWS

Surface map – Image: NOAA / NWS

Make the most of your Maui vacation with these top-rated activities: Maui Top 20: Maui Visitor & Tourism Information
E-Mail Newsletters Receive daily or weekly updates via e-mail. Subscribe Now
News Alerts Breaking news alerts on your mobile device. Get the App


This comments section is a public community forum for the purpose of free expression. Although Maui Now encourages respectful communication only, some content may be considered offensive. Please view at your own discretion. View Comments