Photo by Dominical Waverider Photography

Surf Season has arrived on the Ballena Coast of Dominical in Costa Rica!

Much like our summer and winter seasons change, the seasons of big surf also changes. The summer months of hot sunny days are gone for now and a more wet, stormy, and cooler season brings more gifts. Many refer to this wet season as the “the green season”. As a surfer, I just refer to it as “ the surf season”. Accompanied by the storms and the rains come reminisce of storms from the South Pacific and the Pacific Coast of South America. The energy from these far away storms arrives in our beaches in the shape of massive waves. As consistent as the storms, but not necessary a result of, these waves temporarily change our local beach culture.

For the avid and experienced surfers, this is the highlight of the year when waves heights at certain breaks can reach up to 15ft. Different beaches and surf spots that need high swell energy to produce waves are now in their prime, and beaches that were previously enjoyed by swimmers could potentially be dangerous. For those who are learning to surf, places like Playa Dominical and Playa Hermosa are only recommended if you are with a surf school. Beaches like Playa Dominicalito, Playa Uvita, and Playa Ventanas are recommended and are more manageable. With the heavy rains, the rivers are now shedding more water and as a result, create strong currents and rip tides. For those who are not surfers, there are still several beaches where you don’t have to worry about giant waves and crazy rip tides. For example, Playa Pinuela, Playa Ventanas, and Playa Uvita are still ok for swimming but be cautious. For those who are learning to surf without an instructor, look to beaches like Playa Uvita, Playa Ventanas, and Playa Dominicalito.

During our summer, the waves there are usually tiny to non-existent, and therefore now will have more consistent small waves. For the more advanced surfers, look to beaches like Playa Dominical, Playa Hermosa and the various reef breaks that need this high energy to create a wave. The surf season usually lasts until late October and early November.

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