Rogue Waves

bajabills

Calm Seas and foamers, its fun time...
Apr 30, 2012
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Bill
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blackman fishmachine
Wow, I didn't know we were having a
Spellin bee. If you got somethin werth wile to say on topic then join in, but for you who don't, clam up , fish, or wash someone's boat. You'll be better appreciated.
 
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Kid Paella

Almost A Member
Jan 24, 2015
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Kevin
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Crystaliner 29 R/S
Great show on the topic recently on the History Channel. Pretty interesting how Captains in the old days wouldn't report getting hit by them out of fear of being branded a drunk. No luck finding it on line, but if you happen to find it, well worth watching and yes, they are very real.
 
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bajabills

Calm Seas and foamers, its fun time...
Apr 30, 2012
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Bill
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blackman fishmachine
After seeing "The Perfect Storm", years ago, which is still one of my fav's of all time. , I wondered about it, if it was even possible for a deep water swell to actually "break". Apparently the movie was a real life / death tragedy.

So I only knowing one person who could answer this question with experience on the worlds seas as "captain" and "master mariner" of 1000ft container ships, world wide,ice breakers, around the bearing sea ( when it use to freeze completely a decade or so ago), and yes purse seiners here in SD, back in the day. He said yes they do occur.
"White Squalls" according to many are impossible, but do occur. He has personally known of container ships capsizing, by getting hit broadside. That fact is true , that deep water swells can and do break, and rogue waves do occur. Even they must change course at times to not get rolled. Here's why.

Remembering that a rogue wave is a wave of abnormal size, larger than what is occurring as normal for the day. As with any swell, some form of disturbance created it, being
Wind from one direction, or wind from another direction, usually. Or hurricanes afar off or simultaneously, that's bad enough, now throw in an earthquake on land, or offshore.
Or close to the coast. In any combination of these , chances are a rogue may occur. Especially on strong gale type winds on top of a large swell. Or cross swell. Lots of disturbances at work make things abnormal.
 
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jim isbell

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Jun 25, 2015
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I heard a very complex calculation, that boiled down to this: they WILL be the worst, ever, the year following a strong El Nino.....Just kidding
 
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jig77

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Jun 18, 2012
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huntington beach
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michael
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Mako 20'
They exist... Read about the recent loss of the El Faro. Instant communication lost in moderate sea conditions during their last transmissions. With all their redundant communication system and distress signals and no survivors, it can only point to one thing.
 
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sickcat

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Aug 5, 2003
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Kerry
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Yellow spot
They exist... Read about the recent loss of the El Faro. Instant communication lost in moderate sea conditions during their last transmissions. With all their redundant communication system and distress signals and no survivors, it can only point to one thing.

The El Faro lost propulsion in front of a category 4 hurricane and the captain had declared an emergency as they were taking on water. They have found the ship almost 3 miles deep and it appears to be in one piece sitting upright. I don't know if they have recovered the data recorder yet and when they do it should shed some light on what happened but at this point seems that it was a combination of things that led to the el Faro sinking.
 
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tap

"The Roving Angler"
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Jun 1, 2006
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Researchers have found that rogue waves occur more frequently in combination with strong oceanic currents, such as the Bengali in Africa, that run in the opposite direction of the wind/swell. These currents keep forcing swells to come together and making them steeper over a long fetch. Such conditions prevail in many areas usually during seasonal periods and ship insurers have put notices out to mariners regarding the hazards.
 
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BiggestT

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Sep 8, 2004
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Researchers have found that rogue waves occur more frequently in combination with strong oceanic currents, such as the Bengali in Africa, that run in the opposite direction of the wind/swell. These currents keep forcing swells to come together and making them steeper over a long fetch. Such conditions prevail in many areas usually during seasonal periods and ship insurers have put notices out to mariners regarding the hazards.

That would make sense. Wind against current stands up the waves and makes them steeper. Those conditions do not exist off SoCal.
 
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MYNomad

Heading South
Dec 12, 2007
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Rick
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I know that many of you guys have more miles under your keels than I, but I have many thousands of miles offshore and never once saw a rogue wave. Moreover, I have never known or met anyone credible who has. As I understand it (not claiming to be an expert), a wave (really swell) can't "break" except in relatively shallow (relative to the wave height) water -- even a 100' swell can't break in 1000 feet of water -- it will just propigate along its way until it gets to shallow water. This is exactly what happens with tsunamis -- no visually obvious surface indication until in shallow water, then it can easily raise to 50' or more.

In short, rogue waves are fun to think about, and to tell stories about in the middle of the night when hundreds of miles from port, but there are many greater dangers to worry about.
 
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BiggestT

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Sep 8, 2004
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I know that many of you guys have more miles under your keels than I, but I have many thousands of miles offshore and never once saw a rogue wave. Moreover, I have never known or met anyone credible who has. As I understand it (not claiming to be an expert), a wave (really swell) can't "break" except in relatively shallow (relative to the wave height) water -- even a 100' swell can't break in 1000 feet of water -- it will just propigate along its way until it gets to shallow water. This is exactly what happens with tsunamis -- no visually obvious surface indication until in shallow water, then it can easily raise to 50' or more.

In short, rogue waves are fun to think about, and to tell stories about in the middle of the night when hundreds of miles from port, but there are many greater dangers to worry about.

Offshore swells won't break like a wave hitting a beach where they pitch over, but with wind they cap and break with whitewater sliding down.
 
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jim isbell

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Jun 25, 2015
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They exist... Read about the recent loss of the El Faro. Instant communication lost in moderate sea conditions during their last transmissions. With all their redundant communication system and distress signals and no survivors, it can only point to one thing.
When I started this thread, I was careful to note that there is no doubt they exist--the questions was, have we seen them in our local waters, sounds like, from many reports on this thread, we have
 
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stairman

......
May 16, 2009
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doug
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yak and lowe duck hunting skiff but they identify as sportfishing crusiers
ben's rock comes up damn near vertically from 200 feet of water and the very top can actually come out of the water in large swells in peak tide periods at minus tides.....drifting by it at any time you should keep the motor running. It's a small spot but a sphincter pucker-er. I fish that area on a dead calm mid January day one time with large swells of long period ...the sets were breaking looking like the wave on hawaii five 0(yeah i'm old) but only about once every 20 minutes.....glad the pangadero had local knowledge. The two swells or maybe three would have constructive interference when they all lined up.when their periods were not coinciding they wouldn't even lump up over the rock. rogue wave...not really

island on their lee side can also have constructive interference at a point well off the island...some of you have surely approached catalina from the mainland and noticed that right before it starts laying down from the effect of the island blocking the swell it got rougher then it had been earlier in the crossing> the reason I say some is because not everyone is observant as they should be or think they are. The swells bend around objects in their path and the bent waves coalesce about five to seven miles from the island in a criss crossing pattern that can lead to weird peaks and troughs. It happens to waves in bays creating a rhythmic rise and fall or sloshing in the bay.Oceanside harbor was notorious for that before they fix it with a few well placed underwater jetties. I pulled my trailer in that place one time and had it set for depth just like always and as I approached and started getting the boat on the trailer the water in that part of the bay rose nearly two feet and half way up my trucks tail gate floating the boat sideways off the trailer.

being ignorant has consequences......be vigilant and prepared
 
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LTBOLTMAN

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Oct 15, 2006
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Davis Bahia 25 Pilot House
I came across this vid several years ago and when I was up in Morro Bay stopped in the surf shop and talked with the guy who filmed it...pretty gnarly waves out of nowhere
 
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LTBOLTMAN

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Oct 15, 2006
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I had one on 9 6to8 foot in calm water maybe a sub wake I think ?
we encountered some smaller waves going the opposite direction to the swell and figured they had to come from a sub we saw off in the distance; those subs must really push some water
 
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tanner.s

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Oct 18, 2012
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Tanner
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I came across this vid several years ago and when I was up in Morro Bay stopped in the surf shop and talked with the guy who filmed it...pretty gnarly waves out of nowhere
That's a cool surf shop, always stop on and buy stuff when I visit Morro. I don't know about 70ft+ but that was a massive swell, could definitely have been a rogue wave caused by an earthquake or something.
 
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Kid Paella

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Jan 24, 2015
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I know that many of you guys have more miles under your keels than I, but I have many thousands of miles offshore and never once saw a rogue wave. Moreover, I have never known or met anyone credible who has. As I understand it (not claiming to be an expert), a wave (really swell) can't "break" except in relatively shallow (relative to the wave height) water -- even a 100' swell can't break in 1000 feet of water -- it will just propigate along its way until it gets to shallow water. This is exactly what happens with tsunamis -- no visually obvious surface indication until in shallow water, then it can easily raise to 50' or more.

In short, rogue waves are fun to think about, and to tell stories about in the middle of the night when hundreds of miles from port, but there are many greater dangers to worry about.
While I can't argue with that assessment (although I do believe that we have enough evidence that they do exist), I'll never forget the times we used to dive at Cortez Banks. Granted, although that appears to be open ocean and deep water, the reef actually comes up to around 30-50ft. from the surface, so that would account for why the monster waves out there actually do appear to break. To this day, still one of the most awe inspiring things I've ever seen is watching the waves out at Cortez break. Hard to believe that guys actually surf them now!
 
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LTBOLTMAN

Team Tail Chasers
Oct 15, 2006
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Davis Bahia 25 Pilot House
weather fronts and opposing strong currents can create a situation for rogue waves and in those situations I don't think deep water depth matters
 
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karlow

Twins 2017
Apr 29, 2004
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karl
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I have two stories form one source. Last year Joe was out lobster hoping with two friends on his 18' Greggor.
They were on their way back from Catalina. It was flat as a lake. The little boat was picked up by an estimated 5 ft wave causing the motor to cavitate. When he told me that story, I told him what I had saw on the news that day. A 15 ft Boston Whaler was hoping in Venture harbor when a large rogue wave approached it. They tried to run over the wave, but it was too steep. They flipped one man survived.
The 2nd story was earlier last year, Joe and Andrew were on the Stoked on Fishing boat. Its a 72 footer, they were coming into Los Alamitos from Huntington. They were going to take some special needs kids out for a fishing trip. Things did not go as planed, In the jetty two rogue waves hit them. The first one flipped the boat 90 degrees Andrew had the the big cats a full power in reverse the boat was headed for the jetty. It looked like they were ging to broach., The 2nd wave lifted the yacht above the break-wall and rotated it around and they ended up heading out the jetty. The harbor master closed the harbor for about an hour, but there were no more large waves! I was not there but that is what he told me, there must be an article about it, a bunch of people saw it. twice in one year he was on a rogue roll !
 
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