As of 8:00 a.m. PDT Hurricane Adrian remains a category 4 hurricane, tracking WNW (285°) at 9 mph wi

As of 8:00 a.m. PDT Hurricane Adrian remains a category 4 hurricane, tracking WNW (285°) at 9 mph with maximum sustained winds of 135 mph. No significant change in track is forecast for the next two days, which puts Adrian just East of the 160° swell window early Saturday morning.

Adrian currently has hurricane force winds extending outward up to 30 miles, and tropical storm force winds outwards up to 90 miles. By the time it reaches the swell window it is forecast to be downgraded from a major hurricane to a hurricane, with maximum sustained winds of 105 mph. That weakening continues as the storm tracks further WNW, and by 5:00 a.m. on Sunday, the storm will have dissipated to a tropical storm with maximum sustained winds of 70 mph.

First, the bad news: Adrian’s brief, weakening life-span within the swell window will fail to produce any significant surf for Southern California. Given the hurricane’s proximity to the Point Loma buoy (about 1,100 nm when it hits the 160° window), we can estimate that 10-second wind swell will take approximately 3 days to reach the station. This swell train is actually visible in the Point Loma detailed wave forecast, appearing as a 1.3 feet at 10.3 seconds SSE (165°) on Wednesday, June 15th. Pretty weak stuff Adrian…

The good news is that a solid ground swell is already headed our way from the South Pacific, and will provide 18-second energy for Wednesday and Thursday of next week. Look for 19-second forerunners to appear from the South (185°) early Wednesday, then swell heights will increase throughout the day, settling into a steady 4 feet at 16 seconds (187°) by Thursday. There’s a lot of energy in this swell, and the current forecast shows the surf holding through Friday into next weekend.

Keep an eye on the Point Loma South buoy next Wednesday to see if the observed readings match the forecast. It’s the best indicator of the Wavewatch model’s accuracy, and can quickly tell you if the swell will live up to the hype.

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