The nights are drawing in, the leaves are falling, and there’s a chill in the air. Frosty mornings are round the corner and Christmas is just a few weeks away. Autumn and Winter are great seasons for staying indoors and curling up in front of the fire, but they are even better for surfing! It’s also a great time of year to get some surfing lessons, whether you’re an absolute beginner or looking to improve your skills.
If the thought of jumping into the Atlantic in the freezing cold doesn’t immediately appeal, here’s a few reasons why surfing during the colder months is awesome.
The conditions are better
Remember those hot summer days when you planned the perfect surf session, only to find yourself disappointingly staring at something resembling a mill pond for days on end? Well the good news is you can say goodbye to prolonged flat spells for a few months. Autumn and Winter generate some of the best surfing conditions in the UK – consistent swell and bigger waves thanks to low pressure systems out at in the Atlantic. Sometimes, its a bit too stormy so always check the surf report before heading out, or get to know the sheltered spots.
It’s less crowded
The colder months see the crowds disappear which means the tourists go home and its a lot quieter in the line-up. As a result, there’s more space and there’s far more opportunities to catch waves!
It’s not as cold as you may think
It takes a while for the sea temperature to cool down and match the air temperature, so even by the end of October you might still get away with your summer wetsuit. The coldest month is generally February but by then, you should definitely be wearing a winter wetsuit! If you invest in the right wetsuit and ensure you have gloves, boots, a hood and a thermal rash vest, you will be able to withstand the cold and surf for longer. By the way, wetsuit technology has advanced massively in the last 5 years so longer sessions in the water are a true reality. Make sure you get the right wetsuit.
It’s more satisfying
Picture the scene: you have dragged yourself away from the warmth, braved the cold sea, had an awesome surf, and now you are thawing out in front of a fire with a cup of hot chocolate. Surfing in winter requires more effort and motivation so just think how much more satisfied and energised you will feel afterwards!
It’s the best time to learn to surf
The beaches are quieter and there’s less demand on the surf schools which often means much smaller groups and more opportunities to catch waves. Some surf schools close in the winter but many offer surfing lessons all year round. Check with the surf school to see if they offer winter lessons and check they have appropriate wetsuits and equipment for the colder months.
It’s a good time to get surf fit
If you surf less over the winter months, or not at all, its a good opportunity to focus on your surf fitness and set yourself some goals for the spring and summer. And for the more advanced surfers, the bigger waves of winter mean more challenging conditions so its even more important to keep up with that fitness plan!
It’s a chance to escape the UK!
Still not convinced? If winter surfing in the UK still doesn’t float your boat, you could consider jetting off to a warmer climate. It’s an opportunity to surf in a different country and you could book yourself onto a surf camp to get some intensive lessons. Then, you can put your new skills into practise ready for the warmer UK months!
If you’ve decided that winter in the UK is a great opportunity to catch more waves, look out for our ideas on how to survive winter surfing, coming soon!