As the Canadian Hurricane Centre warned of three-metre waves and rip currents as Hurricane Leslie moves north, surfers in Nova Scotia were enjoying the first "big swell" in months.

"This is a pretty big event," said David Hamp-Gonsalves, one of the surfers taking advantage of the conditions at Cow Bay on the eastern shore of Nova Scotia.

"All summer you're basically on the wind swells and things like that and they're all really small. Not many people come out. Then, right around this time … the storms start coming. So this is the perfect time."

The tail end of what was Hurricane Isaac created soggy weather across the Maritimes on Wednesday, and surfers said they would welcome more storms if it meant accompanying swells.

"Saturday, Sunday, it's going to get pretty big. Can't wait. Can't wait. I'll be up every morning," said Craig Hamilton.

"Five-star ratings. It's going to be huge out here. It's going to be awesome. This is going to be something special."

Meanwhile, forecasters at the Canadian Hurricane Centre said Thursday the slow-moving storm Hurricane Leslie could arrive in Atlantic Canada early next week.

Chris Fogarty, the Canadian Hurricane Centre's senior research meteorologist, said Leslie will grow in intensity over the next three days as it pushes past Bermuda, but the storm is moving so slowly that computer models are offering a wide range of possibilities.

"Kind of waiting to see what the next move with this storm is going to be," he told CBC News.

Fogarty said the latest analysis suggests Hurricane Leslie could land anywhere between Nova Scotia and Newfoundland — if it hits the region at all.

"Some of the computer models earlier today began to show a scenario that curves the storm toward the northwest, toward New Brunswick and Maine and New England," he said.

With files from The Canadian Press