BEACH REPORT: Choppy conditions on the cards this weekend
IMPORTANT NOTE: Remember there are UPDATED COVID-19 restrictions, if you are at the beach, please maintain the social/physical distancing minimum guidelines and abide by the current group gathering guidelines as well.
Well, it has been a fairly wet and slightly cooler week across the local region, but I am sure nobody is complaining because we sure needed the rain!
Looking ahead to the coming days and the forecast is for partly cloudy skies and more showers from today through until Sunday, so if you are planning a trip to the beach you would be best advised to check the sky before heading down.
In terms of the wind, the forecast is for 10 to 15 knots of E/SE winds this morning that will then increase to 15 to 20 knots through this afternoon and this forecast is expected to be exactly the same for tomorrow as well.
Then by Sunday, we can expect slightly stronger winds, with 15 to 20 knots of E/SE winds that could then strengthen even further (20+ knots) by late afternoon.
Swimming conditions have not been too bad over the past 24 to 48 hours, with the wind strength being less than forecast and it also having a bit more offshore direction to it through the early mornings.
But looking ahead to the weekend, the forecast is indicating the winds to get a little stronger and be more onshore, so based on this forecast, we can expect choppier and messier conditions across the weekend and particularly so on those more open and exposed beaches.
This morning should be quite good for swimmers, despite the low tide, with light winds forecast, but as we roll into this afternoon and then across the weekend, the choppy and messy conditions will become more prevalent.
If swimming, try the very early mornings when the winds are lighter or again from late morning to early afternoon when the tides are higher.
Beaches that offer protection from the E/SE winds will also be the better options - so consider locations such as Hervey Bay, Agnes Water, Moore Park Beach and Nielson Park.
Please check with the Lifeguard or Lifesavers on duty, read any safety signage or messages, AND most importantly please swim only at patrolled beaches, only between the red and yellow flags, and only during patrol times - remember, if we can't see you, we can't save you!
Today and weekdays - 9.00am to 5.00pm at Kelly's Beach and Agnes Water ONLY.
Saturday - 9.00am to 5.00pm at Kelly's Beach, Nielson Park, Oaks Beach and Agnes Water; 1.00pm to 5.00pm at Elliott Heads and Moore Park Beach.
Sunday - 9.00am to 5.00pm at Elliott Heads, Kelly's Beach, Nielson Park, Oaks Beach, Moore Park Beach and Agnes Water.
This past week has thrown up plenty of small and fun-sized waves for local board-riders, with yesterday morning providing clean and fun waves to enjoy.
Looking ahead to the weekend, we can expect the winds to increase so this will mean the ocean conditions will get choppier and messier, but we should also start to see the wave heights increase through Sunday and into Monday as well.
Try the early mornings from today onwards in the hope of finding cleaner and calmer conditions, but maybe by Sunday it could be worth a look a few hours either side of high tide as well.
Beaches such as Agnes Water, Nielson Park, Mon Repos and Moore Park Beach should also have the better conditions. Good luck!
For the SUP and Ocean Ski/Kayak paddlers, early this morning may be the only opportunity for paddling on a calmer ocean, but across the weekend, there will be plenty of opportunity for downwind paddling when the winds increase, with south to north paddles through the afternoon being the go.
Also, for those that like to surf on their SUP's, we should also start to see an increase in wave heights through Sunday and into Monday. If not, hit the creeks and rivers for a more gentle and leisurely paddle.
The Agnes Water Longboard Classic continues through today and across this weekend up at Agnes Water. Good luck to all local surfers and SUP paddlers!