Massive waves recorded off Sydney as gale force winds hit

Amazing photos have captured huge waves pounding NSW beaches after gale-force winds swept up the coast.

Giant waves smashed Sydney’s coastline on Thursday evening as offshore winds of up to 140km/h produced wild and dangerous sea conditions.

A record-breaking 13.32 metre wave was recorded by a buoy about six kilometres off the coast of Manly, on the Northern Beaches, Weatherzone meteorologist Graeme Brittain told Yahoo News Australia.

Batemans Bay also had a 8.6 metre wave and several others that exceeded eight metres, while Port Kembla saw a 9.98 metre wave and likely some bigger than 10 metres, according to the Higgins Storm Chasing Facebook page.

The wind system was illustrated in a post to facebook by Higgins Storm Chasing. Source: Facebook/Higgins Storm Chasing
A surfer was shown braving the conditions to catch a mammoth wave. Source: Roslyn Donohoe Photography

Waves dramatically increased across the Hunter and Mid North Coast throughout the night, creating multiple waves bigger than eight metres.

“The reason why these waves are expected to develop is due to a strong low pressure system (979hpa) over near New Zealand interacting with a high pressure system (1028hpa) over Eastern Australia,” the page explained.

“The tight pressure gradient over the Tasman Sea is expected to coincide with strong to damaging south to south west winds impacting coastal areas of NSW behind a cool change.”

A man shown making the most of the huge swell. Source: Roslyn Donohoe Photography

The worst of the wild weather came amid a wind change moving north throughout the day, which combined with a strong pressure gradient produced dangerous sea conditions in the form of damaging gales.

The wind gusts ranged between 120-140km/h offshore and 70-100km/h over the exposed coast, with “rogue” powerful waves ranging from five metres up to more than 10 metres.

Swells were expected to stay relatively large for the duration of Friday and into the weekend, with between five and eight metre waves forecasted by the Bureau of Meteorology.

A damaging surf warning has remained in place for the whole NSW coastline, as more wild wind is expected throughout Friday.

Mr Brittain said surfers had reported seeing between eight and 10 foot waves.

Conditions are expected to ease overnight and settle down for the weekend.

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