We’re off to the USA tomorrow for a week before we head to Costa Rica. Although I’ve visited Costa Rica quite a few times because my father lives there, I have never been to his new hometown, Pavones. Pavones is known as the world’s second longest left (only to Chicama in Peru) and is located in the southern most region of Costa Rica only an hour to the Panamanian border. I’ve been reading about this spot for years and recently listening to my dad’s tales of “triple over head” south swells.
I like to do a little research about a spot like this before I go and one of things I found helpful was an article written by Surf Stoked Mom’s Mate, Marta of Surfragette. Marta is Italian but lives in Biarritz, France where she writes for her blog, Surfragette, which is dedicated to all women’s surfing and surf travel. Her blog is pretty epic and has some amazing recipes complimented with beautiful photography in addition to all that surfy-surf stuff. Be sure to have a look around after you finish reading her article.
Here it is – Surfragette’s Tips on How to Surf a New Spot.
Always check the forecasts
This is the basics, but I understand it is easy to get in the flow and not to really pay too much attention to the surf forecasts. We are so excited to visit a new spot that we don’t always check if the waves’ height is good for our level or if the winds are hitting heavily on the spot.
If we don’t want to get bad surprises, we can visit our favorite surf report website and the plenty of webcams of the chosen spot.
Never underestimate the tidal coefficient
This is something I happened to do and totally regret! Some spots work better with high tide, some others not. Some beach-breaks hide rocks here and there with low tide, some others become inaccessible with high tide. Bottom line: never underestimate the tidal coefficient if you don’t want bad situations to happen (you can read my experience with high tide here).
But what is a tidal coefficient? The tidal coefficient tells us the amplitude of the tide, which means the difference in height between the higher sea level and the succeeding low sea level.