Entries in Waves and Surf (3)


Smooth Waves Weekend With Crescent Moon Venus

Green ground swells along Florida east coast.

I had a very nice long Thanksgiving weekend with my family, and catching some good football games, even with the Dolphins losing in Dallas. I also enjoyed some personal time out shooting amazing views of the Atlantic Ocean with glassy waves, fanatic sunsets and the Moon and Venus in the evening twilight sky. A great weekend and a lot to be thankful for.

Jeff Gammons taking in the waves and ocean sitting on rocks.

Thanksgiving Eve the winds shifted offshore along the Florida east coast ahead of the next weak front making for smooth ocean surface waters. The remnant ground swell still was moving in from the east, and combined with the offshore winds, the waves were super clean. The rocky coastline of South Hutchinson Island also made for some interesting photography with the waves, and produced some relaxing sounds at the same time that would put you to sleep in a nice beach chair.

Crescent moon and Venus November 2011

Saturday evening after the sunset, there was a nice treat in the twilight sky looking to the southwest just above the horizon. A beautiful crescent moon with the planet Venus just above the moon to the left vividly hanging in the sky. After waiting out for the perfect light and fighting the mosquitoes off with the spray (yes we still have them here in South Florida during the Fall) I was able to capture a stunning shot over Lake Okeechobee. This pictures has made the rounds on Twitter, Google+ and FaceBook with thousands of views the last 48 hours. Thank everyone for sharing the picture!

Deep orange Florida sunset over lake okeechobee

Lastly, the sunsets over the last few evenings have been just as amazing. In late November and December, the farmers burn off the sugarcane fields (not the best for air quality) which the lingering smoke hangs low in the dusk sky making for wild looking sunsets. I even squeezed in a sunset timelapse over the weekend that came out great! Watch out for my 2011 weather highlight web video coming soon here on the website.

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving weekend, and I guess I can officially say Happy Holidays to you. :-) 


Hurricane Katia The Large Florida Swell Machine Photos

Hurricane Katia swells along Hutchinson Island, FL.

Hurricane Katia 2011 Making Florida Waves

Hurricane Katia tracked well east of Florida and the eastern United States over the last several days, but Katia sure has been a large wave producer. Large ground swells have been pounding Florida beaches from Palm Beach County northward to Jacksonville the last 48-72 hours. Dozens of reports have come in from lifeguards and beach patrols up and down the Florida east coast of rescues from swimmers.

Large ground swells from Hurricane Katia Ft Pierce, FL.

Large breakers just offshore are welcomed by the surfer community, but the very large and powerful shore-breaking waves have made for dangerous swimming conditions and have forced lifeguards to close many of the beaches.  While filming yesterday on Hutchinson Island, I witnessed several swimmers get themselves into trouble with the powerful shore breaks and current. It didn’t take much for these waves to knock someone off their feet and into the ocean current, and I was surprised by many of the parents letting their children play so close to the breakers.

Skim boarder rides large shore waves.

Skim Boarders Take Advantage Of The Shore Break

The large shore break was very dangerous, but also welcomed by the many skim boarders I came across at many beaches from Vero Beach to Jensen Beach. I spoke with a few of the guys as they saw me shooting video and pictures of them riding the waves, and they said this was some of the best swells all summer next to Hurricane Irene’s wave event last month.

The winds remained offshore the entire day keeping the water smooth, and producing impressive spray-back on the large swells. The afternoon sea-breeze storms came trekking in from the interior enhancing the offshore winds, but also bringing some crazy lightning and heavy rains for over an hour. This pretty much shutdown the beach activities for many, but for myself, I was out after the storms now capturing some nice views as the complex of storms moved offshore into the Gulf Stream.

Large shore breakers from Katia 2011.

More Waves From Possible Hurricane Maria?

Be careful out there this weekend, as the swells are expected to remain elevated through Sunday. Next week could be setting up for yet another large wave event for Florida, as The National Hurricane Center forecast Tropical Storm Maria to become a hurricane, and track just to the east of the Bahamas. This would once again likely increase swells along the Florida coast, so stay tuned.


Greenish-Blue Surf Beach Day Florida Style

Vivid blue-green wave.

I spent today on the coast under full sun and summer-like temps, after being cooped up in the house all day Friday nowcasting for the tornado outbreak in Mississippi and Alabama on Friday. I got to the beach while the winds were still offshore before the easterly sea breeze kicked in. This made the small ground swell glassy and allowed me to get some cool photography shots of the waves before getting all choppy. 

I shot about 50 pictures of the blue-green surf, along with several bodyboarders. The photo above is one of my favorites of the day, but I have a few more that I’d like to share, and I will post them in the upcoming wave surf gallery soon.

While on the beach shooting pictures today, I was being updated now and then from Jim Edds on yet another significant tornado outbreak taking place, but this time in the Carolina’s. It was hard to think that here I am enjoying a fantastic beach day, and 400-500 miles up the east coast a large tornado event was unfolding. Spring 2011 severe storm season is truly showing itself now, and there looks to be more to come next week.