Forecasting Tutorial: Wave Period Explained

4 Dec 2012 0

Wave period is the distance between two waves passing through a stationary point, measured in seconds.

Wave period is the distance between two waves passing through a stationary point, measured in seconds.

Understanding The Magic Number

At Coastalwatch we often receive emails with questions about our surf forecasts. Here, Chief Swell Forecaster Ben Macartney explains how Swell Period affects surf quality and answers a reader question: Which is better, long period or short period swells?

When it comes reading forecast graphs, swell period is definitely the magic number. Indeed, for a forecaster, explaining the implications of swell period is a bit like the birds and the bees – of surfing. The basic definition is as follows: Swell period is a measure of the time, in seconds, between successive wave crests (or troughs) passing through a stationary point. 

CoastalWatch Plus

View the full Article

Tags: wave period , (create Alert from these tags)

blog comments powered by Disqus
More From Forecasting Tutorials
Forecasting Tutorial: Reading Wave Models

Forecasting Tutorial: Reading Wave Models

Gain a deeper understanding into how wave models work and how to read them.

0 16 May 2014
Surf Forecast Glossary

Surf Forecast Glossary

Keep up to date with the Forecasting lingo.

0 16 May 2014
Forecasting Tutorial: Air Masses

Forecasting Tutorial: Air Masses

Welcome to our first installment on meteorology basics: Swell is generated by wind and wind is the result of air pressure.

2 15 May 2014
Recent

Behind The Eyepatch: Who Is The Friendly Pirate?

Ash Keillah's story

0 16 Aug 2017
Are Gabriel Medina and Julian Wilson The Ryu and Ken of Surfing?

Are Gabriel Medina and Julian Wilson The Ryu and Ken of Surfing?

0 15 Aug 2017
Mikey Wright's Root

Mikey Wright's Root

0 11 Aug 2017
Mick Fanning Takes On Ownership Of Creatures

Mick Fanning Takes On Ownership Of Creatures

6 11 Aug 2017
What Does Jimmy Buffet Have To Do With Surfing, Anyway?

What Does Jimmy Buffet Have To Do With Surfing, Anyway?

0 11 Aug 2017
Popular This Week

East Coast Swell Alert: Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Winter is about to make a comeback across the East Coast. In a big way.

Nick Carroll On: The Journey Back

Tom Carroll's First Wave Surfed After A Total Knee Replacement

Sean Doherty On: Can I Borrow A Feeling

Billabong Pro Tahiti Finals Day

Weekend Surf Forecast 11 - 13 August, 2017

Varied wave options about to pop up near you

Go to Top