Some of the more savvy among you will have worked out by now that an on the spot or ‘eye-ball’ report is much more useful than some of the computer generated forecast websites. But unless you know someone who lives by your favourite break, it can be all but impossible to check the conditions. That is, until Wave Chaser came along…
I caught up with Wave Chaser’s creator Rich Bate and asked him a few questions about the project.
Tell us a little about your own surfing history
Having caught my first wave in Perranporth back in 2010 I’ve been hooked on surfing to this day. I’ve progressed pretty well and my shortboards are now my preferred choice of board. However, there has always been one main issue: I’m landlocked! Luckily, I wasn’t the only one as I had a few mates living nearby who’d been surfing for a lot longer than me and took regular trips to Woolacombe, Devon and many spots in Wales. Living where we do doesn’t stop us though and with regular road trips and family holidays to Cornwall and Devon we get plenty of surfing in.
So where did the inspiration for Wave Chaser come from?
As all surfers know, looking for and getting the right conditions is a major part of a surfers life. The current surf forecasting websites are excellent and they are always the first place I look. However, on the odd occasion when the forecast suggests there will be waves, we’d turn up to a spot and find the opposite. Completely flat or an onshore mess.
So that got me thinking, “wouldn’t it be cool if there was a phone app that was solely dedicated to surf reports from surfers/surf shops”. Being able to quickly see live reports would make the decision to make a trip more easily. You might be thinking even if you had live reports, being landlocked means you can’t just nip down to the beach if the surf is good. While this is true, if you are that dedicated and you were only 2.5 hours away you could still make a trip that day if the conditions were perfect and the surf was pumping.
So how exactly does it work?
It’s free to sign up and use. It allows you to add your favourite spots and view the reports from those spots in your ‘feed’. If you’re a regular down at your local beach or a surf shop owner, you can be a contributor and share your reports with your fellow surfers.