- 03 February 2011 | Surfing
Surf reports are everywhere. Today, you can easily antecipate the wind and wave conditions for the next few days. Forecasts are accurate, though not 100% perfect. With the open data provided by ocean buoys, the number of online surf reports has grown.
Some are more technical, some are more visual and graphic. There are two main types of surf reports: those which are mainly driven for surfers and bodyboarders (wave and swell reports and forecasts) and those which target windsurfers and kitesurfers (wind speed and direction reports and forecasts). Both need each other's information, though.
The most famous surf reports are those provided by our friends at Surfline and Windguru. Surfline's history has more than 20 years. Surf forecaster Sean Collins has developed a detailed, accurate and understandable model to predict the quality of the waves in every world surf spot.
Windguru is an idea of Vaclav Hornik, a windsurfer from the Czech Republic. The site features wind and wave forecasts for almost every spot in the world. Some say its predictions are better than the official national meteorological services. Excelent surf report for all riders and even fishermen.
Windfinder is also doing good. It's the official International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) wind forecast model. This German project is growing and in constant upgrade.
SwellInfo, SwellWatch and Wavewatch present interesting visual forecast maps of the swell periods and significant wave height predictions for the next days. They're good to quickly catch an overall view of the best surf spots in your country.
Finally, Stormsurf does a great job for big wave riders who need to book flight tickets for the next hurricane hitting USA or Australia. Their marine weather data model is constantly revamped and should be consulted during the big wave surfing contests. If you're a surfer or wind rider, take a look at SurferToday's global Wave Height and Wind Speed and Direction forecasts. Also, check the Surf Report directory.
Chapter #2 - Ocean Buoys And Forecast Data For The Surf Reports
Chapter #3 - The Best Surf And Wind Reports In The World