Full moon = big swell in Indo

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Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby sjb1983 » Sun Aug 15, 2010 3:58 am

I have been living in Indo for 10 months and have heard many locals tell me "ahh, big waves because full moon!" - I have written a post about the idea that full moon means big swell in Indo.

It sounded like a load of balls but since I've been here I have to say, it seems to be true......weird.......is this an equatorial phenomenon? I have never considered it before........would be interested to see if anyone has any scientific backing for this theory!

cheers
Last edited by sjb1983 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:11 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby sjb1983 » Tue Aug 24, 2010 5:45 pm

full moon tonight and look at the surf report.............


STORMSURF Surf & Wind Forecast
Bali 9S 115.0E
Time/Date Surf Size Swell (height/period/dir) Sea (height/period) Wind (dir/spd)
06Z Tue 08/24 15.6 ft 9.2 ft @ 17.1 secs - 198 degs 9.2 ft @ 9 secs ESE 13 kts
12Z Tue 08/24 15.0 ft 9.1 ft @ 16.4 secs - 200 degs 9.1 ft @ 9 secs ESE 9 kts
18Z Tue 08/24 12.8 ft 8.1 ft @ 15.7 secs - 203 degs 9.0 ft @ 9 secs E 8 kts
00Z Wed 08/25 13.3 ft 8.7 ft @ 15.3 secs - 199 degs 8.7 ft @ 9 secs E 9 kts
06Z Wed 08/25 11.9 ft 8.0 ft @ 14.9 secs - 204 degs 8.3 ft @ 8 secs ESE 12 kts
12Z Wed 08/25 10.8 ft 7.5 ft @ 14.4 secs - 204 degs 8.3 ft @ 8 secs ESE 16 kts
18Z Wed 08/25 10.0 ft 7.1 ft @ 14.2 secs - 204 degs 8.1 ft @ 8 secs ESE 15 kts
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby sjb1983 » Mon Oct 04, 2010 4:07 pm

yeh looks like it eh, Roberto!
Where r u gonna go?!
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby sjb1983 » Mon Oct 04, 2010 4:16 pm

absolutely pumpin with the new moon (which is on Thurs 7th Oct).....

06Z Tue 10/05 5.9 ft 4.3 ft @ 13.7 secs - 214 degs 6.7 ft @ 7 secs SE 10 kts
12Z Tue 10/05 5.7 ft 4.2 ft @ 13.6 secs - 214 degs 7.0 ft @ 7 secs ESE 12 kts
18Z Tue 10/05 9.0 ft 6.1 ft @ 14.8 secs - 213 degs 7.6 ft @ 8 secs ESE 13 kts
00Z Wed 10/06 10.0 ft 7.0 ft @ 14.4 secs - 211 degs 8.3 ft @ 8 secs ESE 12 kts
06Z Wed 10/06 9.4 ft 6.9 ft @ 13.7 secs - 211 degs 9.3 ft @ 9 secs ESE 10 kts
12Z Wed 10/06 13.6 ft 7.7 ft @ 17.6 secs - 208 degs 10.0 ft @ 10 secs ESE 12 kts
18Z Wed 10/06 17.1 ft 10.3 ft @ 16.7 secs - 206 degs 10.3 ft @ 10 secs ESE 11 kts
00Z Thu 10/07 16.9 ft 10.4 ft @ 16.2 secs - 206 degs 10.4 ft @ 10 secs ESE 12 kts
06Z Thu 10/07 15.9 ft 10.2 ft @ 15.5 secs - 206 degs 10.2 ft @ 10 secs SE 10 kts
12Z Thu 10/07 14.9 ft 9.8 ft @ 15.2 secs - 206 degs 9.9 ft @ 10 secs ESE 13 kts
18Z Thu 10/07 14.1 ft 9.3 ft @ 15.0 secs - 206 degs 9.9 ft @ 10 secs ESE 10 kts

00Z Fri 10/08 12.6 ft 8.7 ft @ 14.6 secs - 206 degs 9.9 ft @ 10 secs ESE 7 kts
06Z Fri 10/08 15.2 ft 9.6 ft @ 15.8 secs - 204 degs 9.6 ft @ 10 secs SE 8 kts

......like clockwork! new moon / full moon = pumping!
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby thomas_rj » Sat Oct 09, 2010 1:24 am

extreme low tide gives taller waves? at the same beach (ie. assuming banks do not change their shape) it should brake the water more forcefully leaving more energy to pump it up into the air?
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby sjb1983 » Thu Feb 03, 2011 4:09 am

waves always seem better on incoming tides...maybe the extreme push of the tide has something to do with it....not sure...
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby Chris F » Thu Feb 03, 2011 8:52 am

Bigger waves on a tidal push is something surfers have known about for years, especially at beaches in the Bristol Channel, which has the second largest tidal variation in the world.
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby shlimsy » Wed Mar 23, 2011 9:58 pm

check this book out, its called beyond the moon by mcnulty,,
its explains the tides etc and shows how they arent driven just by the moon,, some areas have two high tides a day,,and its explains it in laymans and doesnt start crippling the brain with algebra and all other crap.
driven by the moon to an extent yes but thats not where its stops !!
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby sjb1983 » Fri Aug 05, 2011 5:50 am

@Chris F - having grown up on Gower, we live by that rule of 'always surf on the push!'
http://www.livebali.net
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby manbearpig » Sun Nov 27, 2011 12:46 am

full moon = big swell??? beat it kook!
you are talking rubbish, but i bet the indos who built their warung too close to the high tide line agree with ya.
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby swiggy » Thu Dec 08, 2011 3:32 am

manbearpig wrote:full moon = big swell??? beat it kook!
you are talking rubbish, but i bet the indos who built their warung too close to the high tide line agree with ya.


I guess you have never been to indo eh? There are some really weird tidal influences there, you have a lot of very deep channels between islands with a lot of water moving around. Crossing between islands on ferries etc. can be sketchy, there are huge whirlpools and stuff in some of the straights.

Desert point is a prime example. Will be waist high mush at high, then as the tide drops to low it will get better with every set until it is solid double overhead. Tide comes up and swell disappears again. Don't underestimate the effect of larger than normal tides. For a place like indo where there is often pretty constant groundswell for months on end, the best waves do often come on a full moon spring tide. Does a full moon make or guarantee swell? No, but it has a big effect on it in indo.
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby manbearpig » Thu Dec 08, 2011 1:44 pm

manbearpig wrote:Does a full moon make or guarantee swell? No


at first i thought you were disagreeing with me, but you were just teasing me till the last sentence.
but thanks anyway for the lesson on how a changing tide can affect a surf spot (for example desert point, you big left barrel hellman you! :mrgreen: )
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby swiggy » Fri Dec 09, 2011 12:05 am

:-D Haha mate my point was that you are pretty much guaranteed good surf on a full moon, and even a massive swell on a neap tide might not be as good as you expect. That straight between bali and lombok is super deep, like miles deep. And you can see across it, crazy currents going on there. Same between Bali and Java, if you fell off the ferry into those whirlpools you'd be fucked :shock: . I know the UK has big tides, but some indo spots seem to be even more tide-sensitive.
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby manbearpig » Sun Dec 11, 2011 8:43 pm

I was calling out the OP for claiming the full moon was responsible for his swell forecast.
I fully agree with what you saying about the tide affecting breaks! :mrgreen:
except the part about guaranteed good surf on a full moon, for that you would also need swell!! even indo swell magnets can go flat this time of year
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby shackattack2 » Fri Dec 30, 2011 5:08 am

Very true Swiggy. Spots on Nusa lembonagan (pretty close to deserts) jump up massively with the tide
http://tomsandbasil.com/
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby sjb1983 » Mon Feb 06, 2012 8:19 am

shlimsy wrote:check this book out, its called beyond the moon by mcnulty,,
its explains the tides etc and shows how they arent driven just by the moon,, some areas have two high tides a day,,and its explains it in laymans and doesnt start crippling the brain with algebra and all other crap.
driven by the moon to an extent yes but thats not where its stops !!


sounds like a cool book. I think I will check that out when I get back to the UK. cheers for the tip!
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby sjb1983 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:07 am

I should change that to full moon & new moon...this month's new moon (Fri 20th April) saw the swell of the year - Slater flew in from Oz to surf it, making headlines for a throw-away comment about pollution in Bali rather than his surfing. Added to that, the full moon on Fri 6th April was the peak of a monster swell also - check the Windguru archives and a tide chart for the lunar calendar- was crazy!
Just a coincidence? ;)
Cheers,
Sjb

PS Here's a photo of the 2nd swell on MSW - balisurfingcamp's Uluwatu Surf Report 20th April
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby manbearpig » Thu May 03, 2012 12:10 pm

sjb1983 wrote:Just a coincidence?


yes.

if you include 3 days either side of the full and new moons, that accounts for 50% of the time each month so hardly surprising if a big swell turns up.
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Re: Full moon = big swell in Indo

Postby pitmonkey » Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:15 pm

I'm no oceanographer but I read part 1 of an article by Tony Butt called 'Surf Myths' in issue 87 of 'The Surfers Path' recently where he explains that if there's any swell in the water it'll be enhanced by a bigger tide. Full moons bring big tides, which in turn encourage an increase in size, but it doesn't generate swell of itself. Seems there's definitely truth to the rumour, but there's a lot of psuedo science circulating regarding the facts too.
...time is timeless...
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