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Waves on the way to wrap up the Newcastle Cup this week

Felix Levesque, Monday April 5, 2021 - 12:45 EST

After a number of lay days over the Easter weekend, sizeable swell is building over the East Coast to give an eventful ending to the Newcastle surf competition. 

In terms of waves, we have two potential sources of swell that will affect Newcastle beaches this coming week. A deepening coastal trough, which looks to develop into a Tasman low, off the NSW coast later in the week, along with a supporting ridge of high pressure to the south will bring increasing easterly swell. The surf will probably build from a steady 2 foot on Tuesday, to 2-3 foot on Wednesday and reach a peak on Thursday and Friday morning in the 3-4 foot range, before easing into the weekend. 


Image: Model showing offshore swell reaching 5-6 meters on Thursday morning generated by strong winds circling a low pressure system over the Tasman Sea. Surf from this source should bring an initial peak in surf on Thursday and Friday in the 3-4 foot range. 

The second swell source will be a cold front passing to the south, sending a series of southerly swells over the weekend. Newcastle, which faces towards the south, could possibly have waves into the 4-6 foot range on Saturday, easing towards 4 foot on Sunday morning before a renewal late on Sunday, and into Monday which could push upwards of the initial peak. However, the contest director will want to have this in the bag by Sunday, the final day of the waiting period. 

Image: Model showing a sizeable swell with a strong cold front on Friday pushing up the lower Tasman Sea, bringing good sized waves to Newcastle over the weekend. 

So, an active Tasman will bring swell, but how will the conditions hold? Tuesday morning may feature light offshore winds, which could provide a few surfable options, but it may still be too small to be contestable. A southeasterly airstream will strengthen on Wednesday, bringing less than optimal surface conditions. This airstream may turn offshore early on Thursday, but conditions may still be a little bumpy. Contest organisers may look at getting the elimination round complete on either Tuesday or Thursday morning, ahead of a strong finish on Friday and into the weekend. 

Winds will turn mostly offshore from Friday to Sunday morning, bringing the most likely days for the contest to run. Good waves, and a clean surface groomed by the offshore winds will hopefully provide the iconic autumnal surf known to east coast surfers. While the forecast may change depending on the position of the low, and the strength of the cold front, activity in the Tasman brings the promise of a strong finish and final days to the Newcastle Cup. 

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