2022 New Years Holiday Weekend Surf Outlook


• Europe keeps pumping, fun surfing for the Caribbean
• US East and West Coasts Remain Dull, Surfing Fun for North Hawaii Coasts
• Australia’s Gold Coast monitors the development of cyclones and strong waves

Unless you had a connection outside of the North East Atlantic, your Christmas surf was probably a failure. But with another long holiday weekend to come, hopes remain high for surfing before regular work schedules resume next week. La Nina and a handful of other atmospheric signals have combined to keep a lid on most storms and swells around the world in recent weeks. But we are starting to see signs of a model change that offers better potential for surfing in the coming days.

Signing of 2021 in Puerto Rico with the hope of a radiant 2022. Photo: Babby Quinones

First, the North Atlantic continues to tip in a way that is good for Europe and the Caribbean, not so good for the east coast of the United States. And the North Pacific is still dominated by record high pressures, limiting waves while bringing rain and snow to California; however, a few fun impulses sneak into Hawaii. But the big story is Down Under, where a subtropical cyclone could develop just off the Gold Coast, helping to provide pumping waves on Australia’s east coast until 2022.

Here’s a look at what’s going on during our global army of forecasters’ holiday weekend:

United States and the Caribbean

Southern california By Director of Forecasts Kevin Wallis:

“The last day of 2021 is expected to be similar to much of December – cold with overland wind and unstable weather as a short period WNW swell creates poor surf quality. However, 2022 will start on a better note as the high pressure system moves briefly over the region this weekend, creating good weather, slightly warmer daytime temperatures and a lighter wind. Saturdays should be pretty fun on some beachbreaks, as the short lived NW swell diminishes throughout the day. On Sunday, expect light wind and a little surf of a mix of small swells – just enough to sail a longboard – and potentially more surf in the first week of the New Year.

Forecast: Côte-Nord | Orange County | San Luis Obispo | San Francisco

Northern and Central California By forecaster Matt Kibby:

“While the spots north of Point Conception won’t ring in the New Year with an explosive swell, they will at least see sunnier skies and better winds than recent times. A modest mix of short to mid-range NW and WNW swells keeps the surf going through the weekend – just make sure to avoid the deep high tides in the morning. New Years Eve is expected to be the largest size of the three days, although many spots in NorCal will face a light northerly wind. The first two days of 2022 bring more modest waves, but widespread offshore flow to the north and central coasts is keeping the waves clean in most areas. “

Hawaii By Director of International Forecasts Jonathan Warren:

“Expect a fun NW swell for the start of the New Year. Conditions appear to be excellent along Hawaii’s north coast as trade weakens and veers southeast offshore. It will even become light and choppy around showers, creating periods of glassy conditions. However, these winds are onshore for the South Shore, creating a local swell that merges with the small swells of the SSW. A modest NW Pulse Friday delivers head-up chest sets in the best spots on the North Coast. This size is maintained until Saturday morning before the arrival of a new stronger NW swell. Expect the bigger waves to eventually reach two to sometimes three feet above the remarkable reefs on Saturday afternoon and evening. The head-up-to-ceiling surf continues through Sunday morning, then subside throughout the afternoon.

Watch Live: Pipeline | Sunset | Waimea Bay | Maverick’s | trestles | San Onofre

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Carissa Moore takes advantage of the vagueness of the weather between Christmas and New Years. Photo: Sean Davey

Northeast and Outer Banks By Atlantic Forecast Director Kurt Korte:

“Unfortunately, it looks like more small surfs are closing 2021 in the northeast, where top breaks see one to two foot surf with pockets of light winds – enough for those who want to get a few longboard waves before they ring. New Years. The weekend looks a bit brighter as a frontal system creates a southerly swell late Saturday and Sunday. Keep an eye out for conditions on Sunday afternoon as the winds will be a bit more favorable on the breakouts further east of the region. On the Outer Banks, the southerly swell provides decent surf windows for some fun over the next few days.

Forecast: Puerto Rico | Florida | External banks | New Jersey | New York | New England

Florida, Southeast and Caribbean by Mike Watson, Director of Atlantic Forecasts:

“The Florida surf stays small over the holiday weekend from a small mix of ENE / E swells that will provide just enough thrust for the bigger boards at the best spots. The southerly winds also add texture. waves, with a wind slightly more southerly and a swell of wind developing on Sunday before a strong cold front. The best spots in the northern half of the state may be with waist-high peaks by the end of the weekend, but most of the coast is still quite small.

Watch Live: Rincon | New Smyrna | Lighthouse | New Jersey | Long Island | New England

Bustling wave heights and swell periods throughout New Years weekend and through the first week of 2022.

“The Southeast ends the year with a blurring southerly wind that looks better in the Crystal Coast area. The approach of a strong cold front caused a rebuilding southerly wind wave, but blustery on Saturday. A good gale is forecast for Sunday, but the winds are quite strong with difficult conditions – check out the easternmost spots or the wind-sheltered spots to the southwest if you’re looking to get wet.

“It’s a great time to be in the Caribbean, with some fun swell days to be expected. Regular storm activity over the North Atlantic maintains a series of NNE pulses ahead of the new year. With moderate to cool trade winds for most areas, look for places that can attract swells from the NNE but also offer some protection from the easterly trade winds. “


UK forecaster Jamie Bateman, based in Wales:

“The Central Atlantic remains very active this week, sending a lot of swell and wind to the UK and Ireland. Storm force SW winds are forming and pushing north towards the UK creating a strong SW swell for the weekend. The swell direction means that the south-west facing exposure in South Pembrokeshire, Gower, South Cornwall and Devon will experience most of the swell while North Cornwall and Devon will see more than one a look. The surf peaks on Saturday afternoon around the double aerial chain with smaller surf along the north-west facing coasts before subsiding a bit on Sunday. Mild air and SW / SSW winds are expected throughout the area so most of the exposed beaches will remain ashore for the weekend. Wales will be mostly on land, but these SSW protected windbreaks will be worth a look. Ireland’s west coast will be predominantly land and large, possibly with a manageable wind window on Friday afternoon. The northwest of Ireland will miss most of the swell but look to improve the surf and conditions on Sunday as the swell moves more to the W / WNW. Elsewhere, Scotland sees a small swell from the N with difficult winds while the North East of England sees a fun surf peak on Saturday with offshore wind.

Direct: Nazaré | Mundaka | Anglet | Anchor point | Strandhill | Crantock

Santa Claus delivered to the Canaries and Manuel Lezcano on Christmas Eve. More days of clean but smaller surf line up. Photo: Rebosola Santa.

Forecast: Portugal | France | Spain | Morocco | Canary Islands | N Cornwall | S Devon

“The same storm sends westerly swells across the European continent on New Year’s Eve and all weekend. With the direction of the swell to the west, Portugal picked up the biggest surf as well as favorable conditions to continue its fine race. A smaller version of the swell also reached France, where winds and conditions should be favorable, especially in the morning. Swell direction is less ideal for most waves around northeastern Spain, but there will still be some locally fun surfing with offshore winds. The swell is partially shaded over Gran Canaria, but light windy days and good conditions respond to this fun swell wave. ”


Katie Jackson, Forecast Manager for Australia:

“A tropical depression in the Northern Territory looks like it could do the trick for Australia’s east coast over the weekend and continue to supply until the start of the new year. While a tropical cyclone is not expected to form (possibly a subtropical storm), it still looks promising for serious surfing from Fraser Island to Coffs Harbor this weekend. The piles may and will change with the storm passing nearby, but look for air waves well overhead that form from an eastern source on the sunny and golden coasts and in the northern part of the sea. New South Wales. All of this will be supported by a southerly wind – can you say a point break? The southern half of New South Wales and the Sydney area are picking up smaller waves and overland winds this weekend before larger swells move early next week. “

Live cameras: Noosa | Burleigh Heads | Kirra | Snapper rocks | Duranbah

Current forecasts for New Year’s Day call for strong waves along the east coast.

“While there isn’t much for surfing in WA, late 2021 and early 2022 are shaping up well for a summer beach break. Local SE to S winds are creating conditions drift through Saturday, but minimal waves. The next wave of waves arrives Saturday night and offers more options in the south-facing areas on Sunday. Waves are bigger than last week for the area, but Perth has major difficulties. The most energy is in the southwest openings with a clean sea for the morning. “

Forecast: Sunshine Coast | Gold Coast | Sydney | Surf Coast | Western Australia

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