High Surf Expected for Weekend

Large groundswells will hit Malibu beaches, according to National Weather Service.

Unusually high surf is expected along Southern California's coast this weekend, National Weather Service forecasters said today.

"There will be two separate significant groundswells that could affect much of the coastal areas beginning Friday evening," according to an NWS advisory.

Initially, a 3- to 4-foot southerly swell with a very long period of 19 seconds could generate surf of between five and seven feet along south-facing beaches in Los Angeles County, especially Malibu and Zuma beaches, according to a National Weather Service advisory.

"But this southerly swell will be over-run by a potentially more significant west-to-northwest groundswell, which should develop from a few storm systems in the central Pacific," it said.

That swell could reach heights of between 15 and 20 feet across the outer waters, with a 14- to 15-second period, and should generate particularly high surf along the Central Coast -- 12 to 18 feet by Saturday morning, with sets of 23 feet "during the peak of the event" on Sunday.

It also could trigger surf of between seven and 12 feet along Santa Catalina Island Saturday night, it said.

The high surf will slowly diminish Monday, then more rapidly Tuesday morning, according to the advisory. Until then, there will be "a high risk of rip currents, making swimming in the ocean hazardous for anyone," it said, and "fishermen should stay off jetties as waves can sweep people into the ocean."


--City News Service


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