# How do you read surf tides?

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## How do you read a surf tide table?

Surf reports will give you the exact times and levels (feet) of both high and low tides each day. Each day the tides will increase by about 50 minutes. Example: If low tide was at 6:30 a.m. today, then it will be around 7:20 a.m. the next day. Tide levels will change each day with the phases of the moon.

## Is surf bigger at high or low tide?

In general, the best tide for surfing is anywhere from an hour after low tide to an hour before high. This gives you 4 hours, plenty of time for most surfers. This is because rip currents going out to sea are much more likely on an outgoing tide, so surfing after low on an incoming tide is best.

## How do you know which direction is swell?

Swell direction is the direction from which the swell is coming. It is measured in degrees (as on a compass), and often referred to in general directions, such as a north-northwest or southwest swell. Swell direction is an important factor to consider because it can determine the quality of waves.

## How do you read high tide and low tide?

The high tide value will be the greater number of the two, and it will tell you how high the tide will be above the chart datum at its highest point. Sometimes, the high tide will have a plus sign (+) in front of it. The low tide value will indicate how low the tide will be below the chart datum at its lowest point.

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## How do you read swell seconds?

The swell period is measured in seconds. At least 8 seconds of waves and longer for the swell to build momentum is essential in most places. The duration of these waves can be gauged by looking at how far the wave is breaking out beyond the curl or inside on tube sections.

## How do you tell if a wave is right or left?

The direction the wave peels in determines who has the right of way. The surfer that is closest to the peak of the wave has priority over the wave. If there is a surfer beside your left shoulder and you are paddling for a right-breaking wave, you should give up the right of way.

## Which tide is best for surfing?

The best tide for surfing in most cases is low, to an incoming medium tide. Keep in mind low-tide on shallow surf breaks jack the waves up higher, leaving less room between the water’s surface and ocean bottom.