Oswald gave us a good flogging
WOW, talk about getting blind-sided. Oswald did indeed decide to hug the coast as a rain depression as predicted last week..
But that high pressure system that filled the Southern Tasman, precisely when Oswald was tracking south, that one caught us all by surprise, and what a nasty surprise it was too.
This high effectively blocked Oswald's passage south, putting the system in a dangerous stall for three days.
It just sat on top of south-east Queensland and Far Northern NSW producing destructive winds and flooding rain.
But if that wasn't enough there was a twist to this sordid little tale. It's called Tropical Cyclone Garry, and it's been sitting over in the Coral Sea menacing The Cook Islands.
Garry had a trick up its sleeve. While ex-TC Oswald was stalled over our region, Garry fed it for three days with warm moisture-laden easterly trade winds.
Hey presto, Oswald rapidly intensified and we all got flogged.
By the way, if you were wondering how the surf was last weekend, it was rubbish; we missed nothing. Huge seas, radical winds and directionless short-period swell.
There is a silver lining to this massive cloud, but it's not a result of Oswald, rather it's that tricky Garry that is sending us waves.
As the conditions began to clean up during the week, the quality rapidly increased and there was much rejoicing.
In fact this weekend is starting to look like the pay-off for what we have just endured.
Ex-TC Garry is happily pumping long clean lines of mid to long-period (12-16 second) easterly trade wind swell, straight at us.
Granted it is going to be a guessing game where to go as Oswald utterly destroyed most of our established banks. But swell we will have.
We can expect a primary swell from the east all weekend varying from 1.5-2.5m. We could also see a wind swell from the south arriving throughout this area on Saturday afternoon or Sunday.
This swell is forecast at a decent 2m as well. Although predicted to be northerly at first, the wind will most likely swing southerly sometime during Saturday.
The crowds could be intense, as virtually nobody got a wave in last weekend.
Here's a heads up. The changing sandbanks and crossed-up swell has got some pretty serious currents and rips appearing at many spots right now. So keep an eye on your landmarks and if it's looking tricky give it a miss.
Ben 'Bear' Bennink is a former professional longboarder and retired NSSIA master coach. He writes for Pacific Longboarder Magazine and is semi-retired in Byron Bay where he is editor of inbyronbaytoday.com.