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Measuring surf wave size

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dazza5172
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Measuring surf wave size

Postby dazza5172 » Tue Sep 11, 2007 11:21 am

Just interested in how you guys measure surf size.

In South Oz we measure by the pre ground swell rise when you first spot it coming in deeper water, the lump as it touches the ground and starts to reveal itself increases the size but is not part of the sizing. Not the ground swell itself or the full wave size

Some internationals I met called it by the breaking wave height in 'overhead' 'double overhead' etc.

Or do some measure in ft on wave breaking height.

Although we are metric surfers here still go by feet, but I have heard some use metres.

anyhow a 4 ft wave is usually breaking overhead once lifting and breaking, is that so in your backyard??

so these wave would be 4-5ft, yes? Although I would say the top one is itching to have a size call of solid 5 or nearly 6ft.

and to add a + or - we would day solid 4ft for the second wave, bearing in mind that it is only just really walling up and upon breaking is a larger face too.

Daz
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Postby liv2surf » Tue Sep 11, 2007 3:10 pm

California system measures height of the face of the breaking wave either in feet or more casually in terms of shoulder, head, OH, head and a half and 2xOH to 5xOH etc. This system makes sense because it is relevant to the surfer surfing the wave and it is easy to estimate looking at the surfer on the wave (if there is a surfer on the wave). California surfers also talk about the "back height" separately.

Hawaiian system measures the back height of the breaking wave. you have to be sitting out the back and it is a bit irrelevant and macho (as it minimizes the size compared with the California system).

... and now we learn the southern Oz system measures the deep ocean bump height which at least makes some sense since that is what the buoys are reporting.

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Postby North_Wind » Tue Sep 11, 2007 6:47 pm

Snap. The exact same topic came up on http://www.kiteboarder.co.uk just yesterday. See link below. It includes an extract to a useful guide on (of all places) the BBC website. Well done Beeb.

http://www.kiteboarder.co.uk/kitesurfin ... hp?t=20463

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Postby Darktanyan » Wed Sep 12, 2007 1:04 am

Those are four foot waves. Three foot waves are barely rideable, except on a longboard.

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Postby dazza5172 » Wed Sep 12, 2007 4:44 am

North_Wind wrote:Snap. The exact same topic came up on http://www.kiteboarder.co.uk just yesterday. See link below. It includes an extract to a useful guide on (of all places) the BBC website. Well done Beeb.

http://www.kiteboarder.co.uk/kitesurfin ... hp?t=20463

North Wind
Perfect, the second link shows what I was thinking, we would have probably considered the 4-5 example only just 4-5ft and I would still call the first wave on my photos 5-6 ft as it is very much a larger wave as it starts to break is quite high.

Interesting about the Hawaii wave size call, did not know that

Daz


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