In this week's beach report, Craig Holden says swimming conditions will be quite mixed over the coming days, but generally, it's expected conditions will be mostly choppy and messy across most beaches.
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 it has certainly been a mixed week of weather across the local region this week, with gusty SE winds early in the week that eased back on Wednesday before really blowing hard from the N/NW yesterday.
One thing is for sure, it has been a very warm week and those warm temperatures will continue through Friday before becoming a little milder across the weekend.
Friday is going to be a very warm and sunny day, with W/NW winds early in the morning that will gradually swing more from the SW/S to E/SE throughout the day and increase in strength from 10-15 knots this morning up to 15-20 knots through the afternoon.
Saturday will thankfully see those winds ease back slightly to 10-15 knots from the E/SE through the morning and then more from the E/NE through the afternoon as they get a touch stronger.
Sunday will then bring more gusty E/SE winds at 15-20 knots through the morning and up to 20-25 knots by Sunday afternoon.
Swimming: Conditions will be quite mixed over the coming days, but generally we can expect mostly choppy and messy conditions across most beaches and more so on those open and exposed beaches through the afternoons.
Friday morning and then again throughout Saturday are looking like the better days/times for swimmers with winds forecast to be a little lighter in the morning, with Sunday forecast to be a very windy and messy day at the beach. So by then, you will certainly need to look for beaches that offer some protection from the E/SE winds.
All beaches will provide mostly good swimming conditions on Friday morning, but by the afternoon the better locations will be Hervey Bay, Agnes Water, Moore Park Beach and Nielson Park Beach.
This will also be the case through Sunday, however by Saturday afternoon, Kellys Beach and Elliott Heads will be worth a look as the wind briefly turns more E/NE.
Sunday could also bring messy and tricky conditions across some beaches – particularly if the wave heights increase by then – so please check with the lifeguard or lifesavers 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 – 9am to 5pm at Kellys Beach and Agnes Water only.
Saturday – 9am to 5pm at Kellys Beach, Nielson Park, Oaks Beach and Agnes Water; 1pm to 5pm at Elliott Heads and Moore Park Beach.
Sunday – 9am to 5pm at Elliott Heads, Kellys Beach, Nielson Park, Oaks Beach, Moore Park Beach and Agnes Water.
Surfing: There were a few clean, fun waves about local beaches early this week, but these soon disappeared when the northerly winds returned by Wednesday afternoon.
Thursday in particular was very windy and very choppy across most beaches, with not much to offer in terms of ridable waves.
Looking ahead, there may well be a small window of opportunity this morning to grab some residual northerly swell whipped up by the strong winds. If so, maybe Elliott Heads, Kellys Beach and Nielson Park could be worth a look on Friday.
Aside from that, Sunday could bring an increase in wave heights as those E/SE winds really increase, so by then you would be best served trying locations such as Agnes Water, Nielson Park, Mon Repos and perhaps even Moore Park Beach. Good luck!
For the SUP and ocean ski/kayak paddlers, the windy conditions are likely to create very messy and choppy conditions offshore, but there may be a few small windows of opportunity early Friday morning and maybe even Saturday morning.
If not, the protected rivers and waterways will again be the go for a more relaxed paddle this weekend.
For the downwinders, Sunday should provide plenty of wind for south to north paddle along the coast.
- Last week's beach report: Wind to cause choppy beach conditions