Forecasting SUP/weather conditions
Analysing the weather conditions can be the difference between a great session or a nightmare. Luckily with easy to use weather apps and the tips in this blog, you don’t have to be a meteorologist to get it right.
Some great super easy to use apps are:
- You can search anywhere in the world for current and forecasted surf and weather conditions.
“Windy wind & snow forecaster”
- Has an interactive map in the top right-hand corner (see pic) that allows you to zoom in and see the direction of the wind, this is my personal favourite for SUPing, as you can check the wind direction is offshore (good conditions) in relation to your local areas features e.g cliffs, spits of lands, etc
Here are some general rule of thumbs:
- Avoid high winds, anything under 10 miles per hour is ideal. The less wind the better for SUPing.
- Avoid big fast breaking waves, if you’re a novice. Check magic seaweed, a good rule for beginners is if you see shortboard surfboards going out, steer clear. Look for other SUPs and longboard surfers.
- Unless you live in the Maldives, let’s face it, there will always be some wind or at least a breeze, you should always aim for light offshore-wind directions. Offshore breezes (or wind blowing from the land out to sea), create flat calm water or clean surfable waves. Onshore wind creates the washing machine effect. Check the interactive map for areas with off shore wind (see picture, crude smiley face is nice offshore conditions and the sad face marks poor onshore conditions). Just to confuse things, light off-shore breezes are great but strong offshore winds are dangerous.
Do not paddle out in high offshore winds if you’re a novice, as you will most likely end up somewhere on the continent or the RNLI’s wall of shame.
- Be aware of changing conditions, e.g. during the hotter summer months, land heats up which draws cold air from the ocean - towards the land, this creates a strong onshore breeze as the day progresses, potentially leading to deteriorating conditions.
- Be aware of local landscapes and infrastucture such as high buildings, hills, cliffs, etc that can provide shelter from the wind, for example if the wind is coming from the North and your on the South coast and there are cliffs, these will offer great shelter.
- If in doubt don’t paddle out!!
For a more detailed breakdown of how to predict SUP condtions check out this page https://www.supboardermag.com/2017/03/31/making-weather-forecasting-part-1-look/or else drop us a message or phonecall