What is the definition of swell? Why do surfers prefer long waves? Learn why swells are better for surfing.

Swells are formed when the wind, at a certain speed, duration and direction, blows over a distance of water called a fetch. When the first waves form, they begin to travel faster or slower, depending on ocean and wind conditions.

A swell, or swell, is a group of long-period waves created by a distant storm system over long distances, at least 2,000 miles offshore.

Most storm surges are produced by mid-latitude depressions between 30 and 60 degrees and travel from west to east, turning toward the equator.

European surf breaks are often blessed by North Atlantic low pressure systems, while California and Hawaii receive these steady ocean swells when they are generated in the North Pacific.

Swell waves are faster, farther apart, shallower, thicker, and more powerful than short-period swells created by local winds. Long period waves also break in shallower water.

Groundswell: an example of large fetch formation in the North Pacific

Long Wave Period Wave Trains

A swell is often identified by a  wave period  of more than 15 seconds, while locally generated wind surges have an interwave time of less than 11 seconds.

Swell gets its name from the fact that long-period wave energy extends downward and contacts the ocean floor earlier, at a depth of about 1,000 feet, while the wind only touches the ocean floor. seabed about 50 feet.

Swells have always been associated with exceptional surfing conditions because long period waves travel a long distance and carry a lot of energy.

When they arrive at our surf spots, the swell waves appear clean, spaced, powerful and ready to be ridden by surfers.

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