Ocean Rhythms, April 17

The only thing you can truly rely on when making a forecast is that sooner or later reality is going to make a fool of you by dishing up exactly the opposite of what you called. In this case, the prediction that the dry, flat period we experienced all summer would continue was comprehensively mocked by the first flush of Autumn, which saw a week of small clean E swell, followed by a pumping swell caused by a semi-stationary low in the Tasman and now bucket loads of rain are falling out of the sky.

The axis of the Tasman low sat to the south of us, driving a week of swell from the SSE to ESE and accompanied by S’ly winds. This was enough impetus for all the sand slugs which had built up inshore over summer to get a major shunt, with most of it ending up exactly where it should be this time of year: carpeting the Point breaks and vastly improving wave quality. Just about every Point break in the region was enhanced by the sand flow, with some seeing the first real sand increase since the June black nor-easter swell last year. As long as we don’t get a major system from the ENE or NE to knock it out, that sand should settle and provide a stable platform for a tubular autumn. Here’s hoping.

The week of clean E swell prior to the Tasman low saw blue warm water push into the coast and with it came baitfish and pelagics. Big hook-ups were on the cards for those willing to put the time in at our exposed rock platforms that intrude into the oceanic currents. Local rock fisho Trev got connected to a chunky longtail tuna with muggins on hand to help land the fish (again). Tailor, some of them XOS were also in chasing garfish and aggressively hitting lures and baits off the rocks. The warm water also pushed into the river with whiting and trevally on offer on the incoming tides. That’s changed now after current rainfall with the Richmond in a moderate fresh and dirty water likely for the next 2 weeks, at least. It’s to be hoped that the current push by well meaning people to rehabilitate the Richmond River can eventually lead to a vastly improved water quality for this much loved but very degraded water-way. It’s going to be a long road with a lot of work to be done. But it can be done. Thats all for this month, see ya on the stones or in the water.

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