The best wave forecasting sites

The best wave forecasting sites

What influences wave forecasting?

One of the biggest challenges for those who are starting to surf, or practice other sports with a board, is to be able to decipher whether a nearby peak will work in the next few days or not. Especially for those who live in Brazil, with our sandy bottom beaches and more irregular wave formation, learning to make a reliable wave forecast can save a lot of time and travel.

There are several factors that influence the quality of the wave and I even wrote a post trying to show it more clearly. The main ones are wave direction and size, wind direction, wind speed, bottom layout, tide (low, high), distance between waves in the series and period between series.

Most of these items can be studied in advance, but there is still no exact science for wave prediction. You will be able to predict the potential of the waves, but you will not be free to "check" the peak before you fall. The purpose of this post is to show websites and apps that make this check at the peak just a formality.

Some of them only show the data and require knowledge of the peak by the surfer. Others, like Broou cast, try to issue an automatic opinion about the peak. We have some interesting articles on the best surfing conditions at peaks at:

Before going to the best wave prediction sites, it is important to understand how each factor influences the quality, size and frequency of the waves.

Influencing factors

  • Wind speed - for surfing, the weak wind, below 10 knots is the best wind. Above that, the waves get very rough and hinder the stability of the sport. Other sports, such as sailing, windsurfing and kite surfing, call for stronger winds.

  • Wind direction - land winds, which blow from land to sea, are generally better for surfing. In some peaks, because of the protection of rocks or mountains, some types of offshore wind, which blow from the sea to the land, can work.

  • Ripple size - on most sites, it indicates the size of waves at sea that is considerably larger than the size of waves when they reach the peak. Depending on the exposure of the beach to be surfed on the high seas, the size of the waves that will be surfed will vary.

  • Wave period - is the average period between the crest of a wave and the crest of the next wave in seconds. A very short period, less than 10 seconds, indicates that the wave will be fuller, with less energy and with a smaller size than indicated in the high seas forecast.

  • Wave or wave direction - this information is important, but the formation of a classic sea, when the wave is opening elongated to the right or left, will depend on the peak to be studied. In this case, you can ask the most experienced “what is the best swell direction for such a peak?” or do in trial and error "I went to the peak with the east swell and caught high". Sometimes I open Google Earth, approach the beach in question and try to understand the best waves. Usually the swell that comes from the sea to the perpendicular land is the one that has more intensity, but some slope can mean a more open wave.

  • Tide - what is the best tide for surfing? Good question ... it will depend on the geography of the peak to be surfed and its bottom. Once again, experience is necessary, which can be acquired in a prediction and test exercise.

  • Background - in the case of point-breaks and re-breaks, the background is static and has no influence. In the case of beach-breaks, the bottom moves and, depending on the day, it may present malformation. The problem is that this is very difficult to predict. Know more…

Now that you've learned the most important thing about the topic, let's go to the sites and apps that will be your new companions. I tried to list below the 5 best wave forecasting sites and an android and mac ios application. At least, they are the ones I use =)

There are some local solutions for those who live in Rio de Janeiro, Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, São Paulo coast, Espírito Santo and the Northeast, but here I tried to get only the solutions that will help you surf anywhere in the world or, at least least from Brazil.

1. Wind Guru

Windguru has not only wave prediction, but all the necessary bulletins for those who want to surf, practice any other sport with a board, or even sail. I used only the free version of the site, so my analysis is restricted to it.

What does he tell me?

  • Wind speed

  • Wind direction

  • Dimple size

  • Vacancy period

  • Predominant wave direction

  • Water temperature

  • Chances of rain

Where does it exceed expectations?

The forecast for each item is separated into parts of the day and you can follow the forecast for 10 days thereafter. Even if the forecast will change when you get closer, you can already smell the sea that awaits you. Works for almost anywhere in the world.

Where does he owe?

It is not a specific site for surfing (but for windsurfing and kitesurfing), so sometimes it lacks information. To use it well, you need to train your vision and understand what is relevant and what is not. In addition, it is sometimes very difficult to verify a specific forecast for a beach or peak.

It also does not show the evolution of the tide (full, empty) throughout the day.

To interpret the Wind Guru forecast tables, simply access the help on their website.

WindGuru

2. Broou cast

Broou cast is a beautiful application for android and iOS. They try to summarize all the information about the peak surveyed in a clear, friendly way and with a super easy to use interface. In addition, as it is mobile, it uses your current location to find the peaks closest to you, which can be chosen as favorites, opening every time the app is started.

What does he tell me?

  • Wind speed

  • Wind direction

  • Dimple size

  • Vacancy period

  • Predominant wave direction

  • Water temperature

  • Weather conditions

  • Tide throughout the day

  • Times of the rising and setting sun

Where does it exceed expectations?

There is the advantage of being mobile, allowing the comfort of reading with the correct resolution of your cell phone anywhere in the world. It shows all the data separated in times of the day when you click on the peak, in addition to having the forecast for the next 5 days. He also tries to speak the surfer's language by passing on the message of how the peak is with phrases like "have surf, bro", "worth the paddle, bro" or "I don't know, bro". It works for almost everywhere in the world and I was also impressed with the amount of peaks registered in the application. In Rio de Janeiro, at least, there are even the most secret points that need trails to access the place.

Where does he owe?

There is no desktop version.

Like any wave forecasting system, there is also a risk, especially in beach breaks where there may be a malformation of the bottom, saying "it's worth paddling, bro" and you realize it's not worth it when you get there ... =)

 beach-breaks where there may be malformation of the bottom
Broou cast

3. Magic Sea Weed

Magic Sea Weed is one of the most complete wave prediction sites. It has a general summary of the forecast, general information about the peak (best wind, best swells, bottom, whether it is beach break or point break, wave size), live cameras (when applicable), swell and wind maps and daily tables wave variation, primary and secondary swell and climatic conditions.

What does he tell me?

  • Wind speed

  • Wind direction

  • Dimple size

  • Vacancy period

  • Vacancy Direction

  • Water temperature

  • Weather conditions

  • Tide throughout the day

  • Times of the rising and setting sun

Where does it exceed expectations?

It works for almost anywhere in the world and the level of detail that the site gives you about the peak that is being studied is incredible. The organization of information is also very easy to understand. The information in the tables is divided every 3 hours and in addition to the predominant swell, the website also informs you about secondary swells.

Where does he owe?

The static texts don't seem to be very up to date, because even today he thinks that Macumba beach is a peak without a crowd. I also had difficulty finding all the most important surf spots.

Magic Sea Weed

4. Brasil Surfline

Surfline.comor Brasil.Surfline.comis yet another interesting wave forecasting site. It is not a detailed forecast, as it does not have several days, but it works well for those who want to have a quick view of how a peak is now.

What does he tell me?

  • Wind speed

  • Wind direction

  • Dimple size

  • Vacancy period

  • Vacancy Direction

  • Water temperature

  • Weather conditions

  • Tide throughout the day

  • Times of the rising and setting sun

Where does it exceed expectations?

It works for almost anywhere in the world, with many peaks, and shows the primary and secondary swells separated at 4 hours of the day. The tide information is more detailed than other sites and allows you to quickly copy a code to create a table of the peak in question on another site or app.

Where does he owe?

There is no forecast for the next few days and there is no information or attempt to say whether the conditions presented are good or not for that peak.

Brasil.Surfline.com
Surfline.com

5. Surf Guru

Surf Guru is a slightly simpler site than the others mentioned in this list. Still, it can help anyone who wants to get an overview of how conditions are going to be in a city in the coming days.

What does he tell me?

  • Wind speed

  • Wind direction

  • Dimple size

  • Vacancy period

  • Predominant wave direction

  • Weather conditions

  • Tide throughout the day

Where does it exceed expectations?

It allows visualization by maps or tables and has a view of many days ahead. It allows viewing of many places in the world.

Where does he owe?

It does not allow you to see a specific forecast for a peak, as it is restricted to cities. It does not try to inform whether the conditions reported are good or bad for surfing.

Surf Guru

6. Terra Waves

Waves, from the Terra portal, has more than 140 peaks registered and monitored in Brazil. In addition to having all the information we need, it is updated daily with texts explaining the surf conditions and photos of the peak. Perhaps it is the best site for beginners.

What does he tell me?

  • Wind speed

  • Wind direction

  • Dimple size

  • Vacancy Direction

  • Approximate water temperature

  • Weather conditions

  • Tide throughout the day

  • Times of the rising and setting sun

Where does it exceed expectations?

Because it has a photo of the peak updated almost daily and the opinion of the responsible editors, it ends up being the easiest to interpret by the beginners. It also shows some information about the peak: predominant size and better swells and wind. It has a mobile version.

Where does he owe?

It does not cover many places in the world. It is not very clear in relation to the water temperature, as it only talks about which clothes are recommended, but each one has its resistance and knows which clothes they prefer to wear depending on the temperature.

So, did you miss a wave forecasting website or app? Comment below and we will include!

Similar articles


Comments (0)

Leave a comment