Bali, Indonesia Surf Forecast 29 May - 14 June, 2019

28 May 2019 1 Share

Ben Macartney

Chief Surf Forecaster

Forecast Issued Tuesday, May 28, 2019

The final week of May continues underwhelm in the surf department, with small to tiny surf forecast across the entire Indonesian chain, right through to this weekend. Still, an absence of significant surf always opens up fun options across Indonesia’s most exposed, south facing coasts – it’s just a matter of getting to those areas before the tradewinds blow it out. And tradewinds are in force over the coming week; blowing resolutely ESE at 10 to 20 knots each and every day, so you’ll want to be up and amongst it nice and early to make the most of what’s on offer. This will all change come Sunday as a new round of small to mid-sized SSW groundswell starts to pick up; in all likelihood showing good size throughout Sunday afternoon ahead of a peak lasting throughout Monday.


Winter is coming to Indonesia, sooner or later. Photo: Sebastian Imizcoz.

Winter is coming to Indonesia, sooner or later. Photo: Sebastian Imizcoz.

Daily Summary

Wednesday 29
Small SSW swell slowly fades. Slow sets up to 2ft exposed breaks, more like 1 to 2ft or less elsewhere and near flat inside more sheltered areas. WIND: Early light and variable tending ESE 10 to 15 knots and up to 15 to 20 knots in the afternoon.

Thursday 30
Small SSW groundswell fills in. picking up to a slow 2 to 3ft+ along exposed breaks, grading to lower levels elsewhere depending on exposure. WIND: Early light and variable tending ESE 10 to 20 knots, freshening to 15 to 25 knots in the afternoon.

Friday 31
SSW groundswell slowly fades. Sets up to a slow 2ft+ along exposed breaks, otherwise smaller elsewhere with size depending on exposure. WIND: Early light and variable tending ESE around 10 to 15 knots, freshening to 15 to 20 knots.

Saturday 1
Residual SSW swell bottoms out. Up to a slow 1 to 2ft exposed breaks, bumping up marginally during the afternoon. Near-flat elsewhere with size depending on exposure. WIND: Light and variable tending ESE around 15 to 20 knots.

Sunday 2
Small, long-period SW groundswell. Sets to an inconsistent 2 to 3ft+ exposed breaks, inconsistent in the upper range. Building to 3 to 4ft+ in the afternoon. Grading smaller elsewhere with size depending on exposure. WIND: Light and variable tending ESE up to 15 to 20 knots.

Monday 3
Mid range SW groundswell slowly eases. Scope for sets ranging from 3 to 4ft+ exposed breaks early, fading into the afternoon. Grading smaller elsewhere depending on exposure. WIND: Early light and variable tending ESE 10 to 15 knots, up to 15 to 20 knots in the afternoon.

Overview
This week’s persistent lull in notable wave-activity is the knock on effect of an ambivalent storm-track that came into effect throughout the southern Indian Ocean around the 22nd and 23rd May; characterised by an absence of cohesive areas of low pressure and subsequently weak pressure gradients; prevailing across both polar and mid-latitudes.

As per the summary above, that’s going to translate into successive days of small-scale surf; characterised by slow sets in the waist-chest high range and the most exposed breaks, grading to sub-wait high elsewhere. Thankfully, there is some more substantial SW swell now spreading out towards Indonesia – and this presents notably better surf-prospects for early next week.

The evolution of a large, complex low pressure system over the southern Indian Ocean on Monday and Tuesday is the source of a more substantial SW groundswell early next week. The system is comprised of two distinct areas of low pressure; a mid-latitude low that skirted north of the Kerguelen Islands, underpinned by a deeper, polar storm situated southeast of Heard Island. Regardless of the latter storm’s impressive, 947 hPa central pressure recorded on Monday, the relatively short duration of its associated fetch looks like curtailing potential for any sizeable SW groundswell.

In contrast the former, mid-latitude low set up a robust, 30 to 35kt SSW to SW fetch that extended as far north as the 30S parallel; thereby placing it within closer range of Indonesia. Together, these sources should produce a few days of solid waves. The leading edge of the groundswell is projected to fill in across The Archipelago throughout Sunday 2nd and should hit peak size before slowly easing on Tuesday 3rd of June; in all likelihood delivering a few days of fun surf in the 3 to 4ft range and occasionally bigger at the more exposed breaks.

There isn't a whole lot of wave-action until a new SSW groundswell starts to show up on Sunday. Source: Wave Tracker.

There isn't a whole lot of wave-action until a new SSW groundswell starts to show up on Sunday. Source: Wave Tracker.

Long Range
Beyond that, some modest rejuvenation in storm-development forecast over the southern Indian Ocean into the final days of May and first week of June hint at some improvement in Indonesia’s surf-prospect during the first week of winter – but it may well be short lived. This activity centres around a pair of lows developing across the south-western to south-central Indian Ocean on Thursday and Friday; setting up dual SW fetch areas; both well aligned with Indonesian coasts. However, this activity looks like coming to a head on Friday through early Saturday, before both storms weaken and are ushered rapidly away to the southeast as the run up against a stubborn area of high pressure below the Great Australian Bight.

The upshot, in short, is scope for two mid-sized pulses of SW groundswell; the first arriving on Wednesday 5th and peaking on Thursday 6th; prospectively in the 3 to 5ft range across the most exposed breaks, before fading again on Friday 7th. This would be backed up by a second SW pulse substantially filling on Sunday 9th and Monday 10th – but whether or not this eventuates will become clearer in light of the storm’s evolution over the course of this week.


Tags: Indo Surf Forecast , Ben Macartney (create Alert from these tags)

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