Tide gauges at Broome, Port Hedland and Cape Lambert have also recorded the impact on sea level but this does not appear to have been large, relative to the large tidal range of the Pilbara coast. The elevated sea level, however, is expected to travel southwards along the Australian continental margin as a Coastal Trapped Wave, raising sea level by about 0.4m above the tidal prediction at Perth on 1-3 March , according to the Bureau of Meteorology ocean model forecast, as shown at right.
Now, the state of the East Australian current and its eddies: The 'speed hump' in Bass Strait that presented navigators with a difficult decision last year is not there this year. Instead, the rhumbline appears to be fairly free of any strong currents as far as we can tell from the latest satellite information. To the east of the rhumbline there is some favourable current clearly evident in the latest images so the warm, anticlockwise-rotating eddy is a feature worth watching in the next few days. There appears to have been a northward flow on the continental shelf of north-east Tasmania (as evidenced by the plume of cold water streaming north from Eddystone Pt) in the last few days but this feature is unlikely to persist until race day. The situation between Sydney and Cape Howe is very complex this year. There are two small cyclonic (clockwise rotating) eddies off the continental shelf, so the flow is adverse in places seaward of the 200m isobath. Over the shelf, however, there was evidently a favourable flow of about 1kt on 15 Dec, as can be seen from the southward drift of a satellite-tracked buoy. The thermal imagery for 19 Dec suggests there was a narrow warm stream flowing south past Jervis Bay over the outer continental shelf. It is unclear from the altimetry what the speed of the flow was. Navigators should watch the imagery for any evidence of this flow persisting til race time, which is quite possible but certainly not guaranteed. As usual, we wish all competitors an exciting but safe race and apologize in advance if the imagery on our website stops updating at any point due to a computer failure while our IT staff enjoy their holidays.