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Whether a surfer is in La Costa, California or "La Costa de Papito Lodge" in Cocles, he or she wants to know where the waves are and when the next swell is coming to Costa Rica. So to help, here are 15 researched websites that focus on surfing in Costa Rica. This list can also be found on the web at - .

1. - Updated photos of five beaches with surf report
2. - the original Costa Rica break map
3. - six-day forecast
4. - 3 webcams and report from Jaco/Hermosa area, pay to get the forecast
5. - Has four virtual buoys for Costa Rica that do 5 days forecasts.
6. - Navy's 5-day wave forecast models
7. - La Jolla Surfing site with links to NOAA wave models
8. - Caribbean and Pacific detailed wave model
9. - tide charts for Puntarenas, Quepos, Rincon, and Limon
10. - Video + daily report from Hermosa area
11. - Report from Dominical and a well-written article about learning to surf
12. - Report from Playa Grande
13. - Daily reports from the Jaco/Hermosa area
14. - Contest info and national surf forecast
15. - links to ocean related websites and environmental groups

One noticeable change in the surf conditions was the appearance of the first South swell of the year during the last week in February. This swell tracked up from Peru and brought double overhead surf that hit from Pavones to Portrero Grande. South swells can be followed two weeks before hitting the Costa Rican coast by checking swells leaving south of Australia.

If a surfer wants to know when to head to the Caribbean, anytime from January through March is a safe bet. The surf has been head high or better almost every weekend and most days in between. These swells can be followed a week before they hit by checking the winter Northeasters pushing off the coast of the United States.

An easy prediction to make on both coasts is that if beachfront development continues unchecked, there will be no beach to surf. Tamarindo has already 400 yards of seawalls, and acres of natural habitat are ripped up to lay down concrete foundations for "planned communities". Pollution from upriver, ignorant beach-goers, and boats has made it unsafe to paddle out at certain breaks.

The only way to reverse this cycle is get informed, then voice your opinion and educate others to do the same. If you want to participate, an organizing committee is being formed to create an international affiliate of the Surfrider Foundation in Costa Rica. The group would do research on selected beaches and report the findings, broadcast news of threatened surf breaks, educate the public on how to protect their beach, start up recycling programs, and be part of a network of environmental groups with similar goals. Contact for more information.






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