Spot pages are driven by our proprietary forecasting model, LOTUS. 16 days of model output is combined with spot-specific "optimal conditions" data, to help you score.
These spot pages provide spot-specific information that helps you see the difference in breaking wave height within a region; caused by bathymetry, exposure, sheltering and orientation of the location.
If a human forecaster is covering the region, their spot report will be visible right below the cam player. A morning report will show within 15-30 minutes of sunrise, followed by an afternoon update, issued between 12pm and 2pm (outside of major holidays).
Data from a human forecaster on the Spot page
Scrolling below the report; you will find the output of our forecasting model. We provide multiple forecast views, which provide unique data sets to portray the complete forecast picture: surf, swell, wind, tide and weather data, all specific to the surf spot.
The first bar chart shows breaking wave height across time, over the next 16 days. Hover your cursor over an individual bar, and you can see the top three offshore swells LOTUS is resolving into surf height. The colored dot helps you identify the swell on the swell analysis graph; a useful tool to see which swell is impacting surf size at the spot.
These predicted surf heights are calculated using the best available bathymetry data for the surf spot. The dark blue and light blue shown on each bar represent minimum and maximum predicted surf height, respectively.
Below the surf height graph, you will see the swell analysis graph. This shows the different swells detectable at a nearby offshore location. The location’s coordinates sit next to the graph's title. Clicking on them will take you to the location on Google Maps.
Below the Swell Analysis graph, you’ll find predicted wind, at the spot level. Wind can vary significantly — even within a few miles — making our spot forecasts a valuable tool. These winds have traditionally been a product of lower resolution global models, but we produce our own proprietary High Res winds charts. The winds you are seeing on the spot forecast pages are some of the highest resolution winds available.
Optimum swell/wind conditions will be highlighted with a yellow bar. A wealth of prime swell direction, swell height, swell period, and wind knowledge is used to create those yellow bars — that’s what comes with being in the forecast business for 30 years!
Light yellow means either the swell or wind is good for the spot. Dark yellow means swell or wind is optimal.
The Surf Guide provides spot-specific information and advises to any known hazards, access tips as well as advice on which board to take as well as the best season to go.
Solving surf heights and conditions on the spot level is incredibly complex and dynamic. So, user feedback can really help to make the Spot pages as accurate and valuable as possible. Feel free to Submit a request and select Forecasting Accuracy with any feedback, questions or concerns.