Summer, What Summer? / by craig levers

 Lots of this going on... 2017 Champ Ella Williams finding a reform in turbulent, junky westie conditions

Lots of this going on... 2017 Champ Ella Williams finding a reform in turbulent, junky westie conditions

For 'Summer' so far, this has been the primary starter of conversations amongst my mates. While the general population do talk about the weather, Surfers TALK about the weather. We have to know a lot about patterns and weather systems, our source of enjoyment and wellbeing stems from wind and swell aka- WEATHER. 

And this Summer has been exceptionally crap. 

Here's what NIWA say:

Overview

The tropical Pacific continues to exhibit mainly ENSO-neutral conditions. Sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the central Equatorial Pacific Ocean remain marginally below average. In the sub-surface ocean, the pockets of cooler than average temperatures that were present in November 2016 have contracted and warmed. Thus, it appears that any La Niña-like oceanic signal has peaked and is subsiding back toward neutral.

The atmospheric setup is mixed as stronger easterly trade winds in the central Pacific along with enhanced convection over parts of the Maritime Continent are consistent with La Niña conditions. The Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) is weakly positive and is consistent with ENSO-neutral conditions. 

International guidance now strongly favours ENSO-neutral conditions (77% chance) over the next three month period (January - March 2017). By March-May 2017, the chance for neutral conditions rises to 87% with a meagre 8% chance for El Niño conditions and 5% chance for La Niña conditions. In summary, ENSO-neutral conditions are likely over the next 3-month period and should continue into autumn.

What does that even mean?

Well, the scary thing, as a surfer, I understood those three paragraphs perfectly. In non-surfing terms it means more of what we have had this last month. More blustery westerlies, more changeable days and more no surf days. We're less likely to get low pressure systems out of the Pacific that create east coast swell as well. To be honest, when I started researching this week's blog I thought I was going to be writing about an eminent change, a late summer about to bloom. Time to move to Gizzy fellas!   

We had one day, the only day of Offshores so far this summer, last Saturday. I went for a swim with the camera...  
 

 The wet side of the Keyhole

The wet side of the Keyhole

 The Dentist's Chair was putting on a great show

The Dentist's Chair was putting on a great show

 Piha Bar showing some form! 

Piha Bar showing some form! 

 Even better

Even better

 ...even betterer...

...even betterer...

 Mischa Davis, 2017 National Longboard Champion, on her Hughsie retro shorty

Mischa Davis, 2017 National Longboard Champion, on her Hughsie retro shorty

 Former gut sliding champ, now stand up surfer Adrian Bray, having a relapse...ENSO-neutral will do that to you

Former gut sliding champ, now stand up surfer Adrian Bray, having a relapse...ENSO-neutral will do that to you

More bush walks and mini photo missions for this fella. But I have to admit despite the less than even average outlook on the local surf front I'm liking the idea of going to Gizzy or even further afield in search of clean walls to surf. And the weather is always subject to change.  

 This week's very mini mission around the Mercer Loop to make a pano stitch from Auckland's highest sea cliffs 

This week's very mini mission around the Mercer Loop to make a pano stitch from Auckland's highest sea cliffs 

From The Galleries

This will be a good place to be over the next few months; Castle Point, Wairarapa. This image was used as a feature spread in The Big Little Beach Book. Click on the image to see it larger...and of course purchasing options :)