Surfing in Carmel River State Beach, Monterey, California USA

Wave power:
hollow and powerful
Wave type:
sand - bar
Wave direction:
right and left
Swell direction:
northwest, west
Wind direction:
Carmel River State Beach is a state park located in Carmel, north of Big Sur coast, in Monterey County, California, USA.

It is a 1 mi/1.6 km long, breathtaking, public beach with a beautiful lagoon formed by the Carmel River. Carmel River State Beach merges with San Jose Creek State Beach (Monastery Beach). The park was established in 1953. In the lagoon immigrate a large number of migratory birds. Winter and fall are the best seasons for bird watching.

Carmel River State Beach at the section of Central Coast Birding Trail is believed to be one of the most dangerous places for swimming, because of the steep drop – off from shore creating turbulent waves that are incorrectly shown as calm sea and the strong currents. Surfing is a very popular sport in Carmel river state beach.

The wave quality is regional classic. Surfers should be pros or kamikaze. The type of the wave is sand – bar and the direction is both right and left. Rocks and sand are found at the bottom of the sea. Power of the waves is hollow, fast and powerful and their normal length is short (164 ft/50 m), being the same also on good days.

Good swell direction and good wind direction is northwest / west and swells size starts at 1 m – 1.5 m / 3 ft – 5 ft and holds up to 3 m+ / 10 ft+. Best tide position is mid tide and best tide movement is falling tide. Surfers should watch out for rips / undertow and rocks.