As summer 2018 gives way to autumn and eventually winter there’s much debate about what type of low season we’ll get – especially among those of us who use the waters surrounding our lands for fun and frolics. Surfers, windsurfers and other sorts preoccupied with waves and wind will be watching and waiting keenly to see how things pan out and whether we get a ‘classic’ or damp squib.
Currently suggestions from meteorological bods are erring towards the El Nino side of the equation. What does this mean in practice? Well, traditionally (and generally) an El Nino event can signal an increase in tropical depressions spinning away along the Caribbean storm funnel. If an El Nino season does come to fruition then for those dwelling in that part of the world severe weather will certainly be unwelcome – especially in light of the devastation suffered recently. (In a lot of cases communities still haven’t recovered from the wraith of these previous hurricanes).
Severe weather is a double edged sword, however. While some parts of the globe end up battered and bruised by named systems other areas can be gifted conditions making it applicable for watersports. Long period hurricane swell, for instance, can be awesome if coinciding with a decent amount of breeze. Wave sailors in and around Europe for instance score incredible sessions off the back of hurricane activity regularly. In some cases riders wait all year for this period in the hope it’ll deliver the goods, although not at the expense of other country’s economies and livelihoods – nobody wants to see that. And if it’s not long period ground swell windsurfers can still make use of dispersing weather systems as they track across the ground bringing strong winds and milder temperatures.
El Nino whisperings suggest a spike in this kind of weather activity making it a potentially salivating prospect for windy riders everywhere in the Northern Hemisphere. It also halts the onset of colder weather. Although it should be noted that a chillier end to winter can often be felt when El Nino is in effect.
So will El Nino come to fruition? Only time will tell. In the meantime it’s best to stay tuned to the usual weather forecasting channels as they continue to update and give early predictions. The next question then has to be are you and your windsurfing gear prepared for a potentially busy season?…