Everybody loves a big swell. The anticipation begins. When will it arrive? How big will it be? Who will charge? But everyone who was here in 06 or 04 knows that the biggest question of all is: will the swell destroy the bank? That's the rub. See right now we've got about-to-be-named Cyclone Odette headed straight down the coast. If she stays just offshore – could be epic. But if she hugs the coast (as current models project) – kiss the Superbank goodbye.
Here's what Swellnet.com is saying about what's coming on Sunday and Monday.
"As the 26C isotherm currently extends a considerable distance down the NSW coastline (see chart below), the waters immediately off the SE Queensland and Northern NSW coastline may be sufficiently warm enough to support a Tropical Cyclone, which increases the probability of a very significant weather system occupying our immediate swell window for a sustained period. Additionally, a coastal crossing cannot be ruled out at the present time."
Translation: Coastal crossing, bad, very bad.
Atmospheric computer models have maintained their current projections for the last few days, and if they continue to hold steady with this scenario, we are likely to see a very significant swell event arriving later in the weekend towards a peak in size early next week. Wave heights of 10-15ft at exposed locations are completely plausible given current computer model guidance, but this will be re-evaluated in the coming days. The projected close proximity of the cyclone’s position to the mainland (by Sunday night – see chart below), would increase the confidence in these wave height estimations, but the associated downside would be strong winds from the E/SE thru’ SE. The chances of heavy rainfall is also dependent on just how close the cyclone tracks to the coastline.
Translation: Odette, be a good cyclone and stay far offshore, please!
Meanwhile, back here at Snapper, the waves are 3-4 feet but tattered by a nasty North-East wind that's likely to hang around for a couple days. What's been run so far is the trials (won in a feel-good upset by Aboriginal local Dale Richards over highly touted Jordy Smith), Rounds 1 and 2 of the Roxy Pro (Carissa Moore dominated, Sofia Mulanovich and Rochelle Ballard went down,) and an experimental new Kelly Slater created contest format where two different man-on-man heats are run at the same time (newly unsponsored Bede Durbidge was the standout.)
So there you have it. No men's main event heats have run yet and all eyes are on the weather maps. The Superbank, meanwhile, steels itself for what could be another major thrashing.