Julian: Is there any way to predict fog formation for the Bodega/Dillon area? When there is no wind I have to get my foil surfing on, but often times it is a complete whiteout and can’t even see the break or the beach once I get out. It’s often clear in the morning and then fog will roll in midday. Is there any way to predict the coming and going of the fog? The NWS forecast is useless for this!
Having lived, windsurfed and surfed in that
area… the short answer is no.
We can forecast days when it is certain to be clear and days when it will be foggy all day but the vagaries of fog on the microscale you are talking when a fog bank is nearby change minute by minute so any forecast made hours ahead is useless.
Your best bet is to look at the near real-time data before making the drive.
1. Look at this page (which is down right now) and play the 2 hour loop and see if the fog in the area is increasing or decreasing.
2. Look at the Lawsons Landing cam and see if the fog is over Dillon or if there is a fog bank towards Bodega.
3. This cam near Bodega head will allow you to see if Bodega is clear or if the fog bank is nearby.
4. This profiler near the Coast Guard Station at Bodega gives you the winds just aloft at Bodega (the stronger the better for Dillon) it also gives you the depth of the marine layer. If you see the blue area becoming thinner there should be decreasing surface fog:
5. For what it is worth this link will give you the forecast clouds from 11 different models for Bodega:
Hope this helps some. The next time you go across the Dillon
Shark Pit say hello to the elk on that tiny beach on Tomales point.