In this week's beach report, Craig Holden says choppy conditions are expected at local beaches and early mornings are best for a swim.
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.
Weather: Well, this week kicked off with a gentle reminder that winter is not quite gone just yet with those chilly mornings and evenings returning to make sure we didn’t pack those blankets away just yet, but along with that we saw some spectacular beach days on both Monday and Tuesday.
Looking ahead to the weekend, unfortunately it does appear that some stronger onshore winds are heading our way and especially so on Saturday, so this may impact on deciding which day to hit the beach and which beach to visit if you do, but we are also expecting mostly sunny days.
After another cool morning, on Friday we are expecting only light to moderate winds at around 10 knots from the S/SE that will then swing more from the E/SE at 10 to 15 knots through the afternoon.
Saturday will then bring stronger winds through the day, with 10 to 15 knots of S/SE winds in the morning that will quickly increase to 15 to 20 knots (and possibly stronger) from the E/SE.
Sunday should then bring some respite as the winds are forecast to ease back to 10 to 15 knots from the E/SE.
Swimming: Looking ahead from today and into the weekend, it does appear that we will be greeted with mixed swimming conditions for beach-goers, with some beaches definitely looking to provide better swimming conditions than others.
For Friday, almost all beaches will provide reasonably good swimming conditions and particularly so this morning while the winds remain light.
However, we will start to see slightly choppy ocean conditions start through this afternoon, but they will certainly be choppier by Saturday when the winds do get quite strong.
Open and exposed beaches will also have a strong side current running from right to left by then as well, so swimmers will need to be wary of this.
By Sunday though, conditions will start to ease again, but swimmers will still need to be cautious as the wave heights will be enough to possibly lead to rips on those open beaches.
Hervey Bay will certainly be the best beach for swimmers over the coming days, but Agnes Water (adjacent to the headland) will also be quite protected.
Locally, Moore Park Beach, Nielson Park and Mon Repos will also provide slightly better conditions across the weekend.
If you are going for a swim, the early mornings will be the best time to do that, but also please check with the lifeguard 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!
Beach patrols: Today and weekdays – Nil
Saturday and Sunday: 9am to 5pm at Kelly’s Beach and Agnes Water only
Surfing: It has once again been pretty flat across all beaches this week and particularly up until Wednesday, however the past 24 hours has seen some small, ridable waves start to kick-in.
So, looking ahead to the weekend, it does look likely that we will see an increase in wave heights through Saturday afternoon and into Sunday, but they could well be a little messy and choppy due to the onshore winds.
With this in mind, beaches such as Agnes Water, Nielson Park, Moore Park Beach and Mon Repos will all be worth checking out through Saturday afternoon and again on Sunday for some fun-sized waves.
- Last week's beach report with Craig Holden: Sunshine and light winds