Monster Waves Expected to Hit California Coast

Monster Waves Expected to Hit California Coast

A man surfs in Newport Beach, Calif., in a file photo. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin


Updated: 12/30/2023

Giant ocean waves are expected to hit the Southern California coast beginning Dec. 26, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).
While the stormy weather had cleared throughout the region the day after Christmas, and temperatures lingered in the high 60s, a storm brewing west of the Golden State could bring waves as high as 15 feet later in the week, the NWS office in Oxnard said.
“Any beaches that face toward the west are getting the highest surf,” NWS Meteorologist Mike Wofford told The Epoch Times.
The beaches most at risk of seeing 10- to 15-foot waves include Santa Monica, Redondo Beach, and Manhattan Beach, he added.
“It looks like the highest [waves] are going to be Thursday,” Mr. Wofford said.
The region will also see high tides reaching 6.7 feet, adding the possible threat of beach erosion and possible flooding in parking lots adjacent to beaches during high tides.
The weather service issued advisories Tuesday to alert the public to possible coastal flooding and high surf. Those will change to warnings later in the week, according to the NWS.
It’s not rare to see high tides and monster waves at the same time, but it is rare to have the amount of swell energy approaching the coastal region, Mr. Wofford said.
Storms coming from west of the Pacific Ocean are generating strong winds that are expected to produce large ocean swells and possible coastal flooding through Saturday.
Light rain is expected along California’s central coast with a chance of rain as far south as Santa Barbara.
Rain is also expected across the region, followed by a slight chance of precipitation in Pasadena on New Year’s Day, according to the weather service’s advisory.
The California Surf Map, a wind and wave forecasting website, showed waves potentially as high as 17 feet on Wednesday morning in northern California’s Humboldt and Del Norte counties in the northernmost region of the state along the Oregon border.
Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin


Jill McLaughlin is an award-winning journalist covering politics, environment, and statewide issues. She has been a reporter and editor for newspapers in Oregon, Nevada, and New Mexico. Jill was born in Yosemite National Park and enjoys the majestic outdoors, traveling, golfing, and hiking.

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