3 reasons why you should try cold-water winter surfing

Many think of the hot summer months as the best time for surfing and, true, many of the places we here at EarPro personally love offer a great summer surfing experience. So, why would anyone face up to the challenge and choose cold water and icy winds over warm sandy beaches and sunshine?

Most people have heard of the classic surf film The Endless Summer, but what surfers like myself chase is actually the opposite,” says professional big wave surfer Mark Healey. “We spend the Northern Hemisphere Winter in the north and when spring arrives we turn our focus to Fall/Winter in the Southern Hemisphere.”

There are many reasons why cold-water winter surfing is great: the waves are at their best, the crowds are smaller and it’s even good for your health.

Here are our top three reason why you should give cold-water winter surfing a try:

Reason #1: Cold-water winter surfing offers better waves

In many locations, swells become greater during the winter. So, forget the sometimes seemingly never-ending flat spells and only ankle-high waves that accompany so many summer surfing experiences. Simply put, winter waves are more reliable than summer swell and less northerly winds also mean the swell is smoother. And, as there are less surfers out in winter, you have a greater choice of what swells to surf and, in turn, this can make you a better surfer.

Reason #2: No crowds mean the waves are yours

Can you imagine a surf spot where you can keep riding great swells without any other surfers in sight? Many do not think of surfing as a year-round sport and, more often than not, there will only be very few surfers during the winter period. And that is exactly why surfers in the know are very much looking forward to this time of the year. Patrick Gudauskas, a professional surfer from Southern California, fully agrees with us that winter is the best time to surf, saying that ‘in California it’s much colder, and with the larger waves you can often times find less people in the water and score magic windows all over the coastline.’

Reason #3: Cold-water winter surfing is healthy!

Unless you spend your days in the slopes snowboarding or skiing you will definitely get too little sunlight during the winter months. Going winter surfing will definitely help with getting that extra and much needed dose of vitamin D. Also, it can boost your immune system as studies show that the cold water acts as a mild stressor activating the immune system. The cold water also gets your blood pumping which may improve your circulation, in particular to extremities. As if that weren’t enough, the large winter swells are great to practice your paddling, burn calories and also build up core strength!

But, always remember that winter surfing is not without risks. The Irish Surfing Association has published a very useful guide for the winter surfing sessions a summary of which you can find here.

As always, let us know about your cold-water winter surfing experiences but, above all, stay safe and have fun!

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We’ve compiled our favourite cold-water winter surfing videos on our YouTube channel – Enjoy!

Did we make you curious? We recently wrote on why winter swimming is good for you – similar applies for winter surfing.

If you have cool pictures of your winter surfing experiences, please share them with us on Facebook or Instagram. Looking forward to hearing from you!

Top 9 Surfing Spots in Australia

We already introduced you to our favourite surf spots in Europe, the Americas and Asia – now we’d like to put the spotlight on Australia. 

We at EarPro think that Australia is a surfer’s paradise – wouldn’t you agree? The vast variety of beaches covering the coasts of Australia make it one of the top destinations for surfers across the world. 

Here are some of our favourite surf spots for you to choose from based on your surfing capabilities.

The Pass, Byron Bay

The Pass at Byron Bay in the east of the country is a spectacular place for all surfers and skill levels. This surf spot comes with some of the best breaks and long rides. The best time to head to The Pass for surfing is between April and September.

Kirra, Gold Coast

Kirra is the dream spot for advanced surfers. Here you will find great waves and powerful and heavy tubes. The best time for surfing is from March to June, but you can come here anytime from February until July for an amazing surfing experience.

Noosa, Queensland

This surfing spot is particularly popular among beginners and intermediate surfers. When the tide is low, we’d recommend only experienced surfers ride some waves as the rocks are quite close to the surface. The best time to try this surf spot is between February and July.

Angourie Point, New South Wales

Angourie Point is one of the more scenic surf spots in Australia as it has a beautiful national park around it. Depending on the swell size, we’d recommend this area for intermediate and advanced surfers. 

Bells Beach, Victoria

This surf spot has some amazing breaks and is the perfect location for avid advanced surfers. The water can be quite chilly, so you might want to bring your wetsuit. Anytime between April and October will guarantee you a great surf experience.

Treachery Beach, Queensland

If you’re looking to get away from the crowds, Treachery Beach is the perfect place for you. It is still counted as some of the more secret surfing spots and has great waves for surfers of all levels.

Main Brak, Margaret River

Main Break is a surf spot for the adventurous, experienced and brave. Here you will find spectacular waves, hollows and bowls. Main Break should not be underestimated and we recommend wearing protective gear. 

Caves, Cactus Beach

This is another great spot for experienced surfers. Waves can reach extreme heights and you will find some heavy swells here, especially in winter. The best time to surf in Caves is between April and October.

Burleigh Heads, Queensland

Burleigh Heads is a stunning location for surfers of all levels. You will get amazing point breaks and draining tubes here. Another plus: this surf spot is usually less busy compared to some of the nearby locations in Queensland.

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Which are your favourite surfing spots? We’d love to hear your recommendations – feel free to reach out and share them with us.

Top 9 Surfing Spots in the Americas

We at EarPro love surfing all around the world. We already shared our favourite surf spots in Europe, Australia and Asia – next up: the Americas.

The Americas offer spectacular spots for all surfers – from mostly quiet spots in Central America, to famous breaks in the United States and epic but budget-friendly surf trips in South America. Here are our personal favourites:

Playa Jaco, Costa Rica

This surf spot is famous for its consistent break and variety of waves. It’s therefore a great place to go for if you’re planning to surf with a group of beginners and experts – you’ll all have an amazing time.  

San Clemente, California

San Clemente has one of the strongest surfing cultures in the USA. This surf spot comes with perfect waves for both learners and experienced surfers, guaranteeing a unique surfing experience.

Florianópolis, Brazil

Florianópolis is known as the surf capital of Brazil – a surfer’s paradise. This surf spot is something for every level. The area offers a dozen surf breaks with different swells, tides and wind conditions. You can surf here all year round but you will find the best waves between March and November.

El Paredon, Guatemala

Still mostly unknown among international surfers, this surf spot is the perfect place if you ask the local community. The uncrowded waves offer ideal conditions for surfers of all levels. We recommend staying at some of the surf camps along the beach.

Haleiwa, Hawaii

The Haleiwa shore established Hawaii as one of the world’s best destinations for surfing. This surf spot has breaks for beginners and experienced surfers. We love the combination of perfect waves, stunning views and soothing water.

Nuquí, Colombia

Nuquí is a great starting point for surfing on Colombia’s Pacific Coast. It’s known for its consistent surfing conditions and challenging waves but also offers great places for you to learn to surf. A lot of stretches on this coastline have hardly any roads, so a boat will be your best bet to get to the different surf breaks.

Bocas del Toro, Panamá

Bocas del Toro is a spectacular surf spot on the Caribbean coast, perfect for surfers of all levels. After your surf day, head down to the nearby town – it is known as a great spot for partying.

Montauk, New York

Montauk is a must if you’re planning to surf in the USA, guaranteeing you surf action all year round. This surf spot offers consistency – which is rare along the East coast – and an amazing variety of waves.

Punta de Lobos, Chile

Close to Chile’s capital Santiago, the coastline offers a variety of great waves for surfers of all levels. Punta de Lobos is one of the most popular surf spots in the area with heavy swells and sometimes gigantic waves. You can surf here all year round.

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Which are your favourite surfing spots? We’d love to hear your recommendations – feel free to reach out and share them with us.