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Weather forecasting

Questions new members commonly ask e.g. Which kayak should I buy?

Weather forecasting

Postby razzo_13 » 29 Jan 2020, 22:31

Hi guys,

Just wondering what information people look for in the weather forecast before heading out. Eg wind speed, direction etc.

And where is the best place for this? Is it just the bom or are there better alternatives?

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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby 4liters » 29 Jan 2020, 22:38

I use Fishranger, it has pretty much all of the information I want in one place.

I look for wind under 10 knots mainly
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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby happyas » 29 Jan 2020, 23:42

I use meteye as I believe that that is the base info that other sites use to do their predictions anyhow. Marine safety vic recommend them above all others.
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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby maverick » 30 Jan 2020, 09:43

happyas wrote:I use meteye as I believe that that is the base info that other sites use to do their predictions anyhow. Marine safety vic recommend them above all others.

I use Meteye as well for the wind, wind strength is a consideration, but so is wind against tide and the wind direction. It is possible to fish in close to shore in 20 knots, if it is an offshore wind. Not comfortable, but fishable. For instance, sqquid at Mt Martha are only 50 m offshore, so the cliffs offer a heap of protection and the wind blows over the top.

WPB has considerable stronger tidal flows than PPB (apart from the southern end) so it pays to observe which way the tide flows in comparison to the wind. If the wind and tide are in the same direction, it will be flatter than normal, but once the tide changes direction, it will be rougher than normal.

The southern end of PPB is different again as there is a 3 hour difference between low tide at the Heads and when the water stops flowing. Slack water at the Heads generally aligns with high or low tide at Williamstown. So a 9 am low tide at the Heads means the water won't stop flowing out until around 12 midday.

In reality, you need to have a better understanding of the wind and weather when you are kayak fishing, then when you are boat fishing.
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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby Steve_R » 30 Jan 2020, 15:51

I am not suggesting 'subscribe' but take a look at Fishranger. Select a location and note the difference Between BOM wind and GFS wind. After that read their notes on data source comparison. Its a shame you can't see 3D wind. You'd see all it is is wind readings either side of your requested report. To me that's 2D compared to single point prediction. Semantics aside, looking a different locations helps you understand what may be coming your way.

Some swear by Fishranger. I find the predictions are often out for here but they are fairly close for locations either side. Instead, I like to see a graphical representation. I find Ventusky helpful but not totally accurate. Current wind report:;149.9;5&l=wind-10m
As I write wind is relatively calm. That may change. Note that wind selections are available for varying heights above ground level (that's what I think of as 3D - so far I haven't worked out how knowing wind speed at 9000m is useful to kayak fishers).

Predictions aren't perfect. Here's a screen shot for Sunday as an example. It indicates why a graphical view can be so much more helpful that a sine chart for one location.
I won't include a link because predictions change and that graphic with it. However, on the page when you animate, it shows you the calmer section South of Wollongong is a moving target. Sometime during the day it is likely to be calm for a while but calming down won't mean good to go out to sea.

EDIT: Data sources matter.
You should be able to find data sources on weather prediction websites.
WillyWeather is not totally open saying it uses BOM data and other sources. It is also a land based service, apparently not gathering and using offshore predictions. OK for rivers but not to go onto the sea.

If you cross into NSW planning to go to sea
HINT: move the map and zoom. Click [refresh] to get NSW area just off the map.

Last edited by Steve_R on 31 Jan 2020, 09:14, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby Galey » 30 Jan 2020, 18:01

I mostly concern myself with wind and how strong it is, for no other reason than it shits me to tears while fishing. I do also check water flow into the area I’m planning to fish, barometric pressure and moon phase. I’ve also been known to keep an eye on salinity levels. Pretty much anything I can use as an excuse for a donut.
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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby razzo_13 » 31 Jan 2020, 07:48

Thanks for the replies everyone. Very helpful.
It's given me plenty to think about
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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby peatop » 31 Jan 2020, 14:48

I've been mainly using fishranger, however since the point wilson weather station broke down I've found it basically useless for this immediate area and gone back to willy nothing wrong with fishranger it's just no good here imo. As others have said the apps are good but to plan better sites like meteye are invaluable as it gives you a better understanding of what might happen and what's likely to happen, something else to keep in mind is the app has live wind speed and direction and check every so often while on the water.
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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby vicyak » 31 Jan 2020, 17:37

Fishranger is the best. They offer 2 wind charts and one is from BOM. Very accurate. What I like about fishranger is it gives you an hourly breakdown and everything is in one place. For Snapper fishing looking for rising barometer, for squid fishing cloudy conditions are great. Fish ranger give everything in one place. Also predicts rain by hour then chance of rain and the amount of rain. The air temp is one of the last things I look at. I've paid the membership and it's worth the money spent. Fish ranger also have a feature called wind 3D and can plot actuals. This is great as based on the wind conditions i look for surrounding weather stations to what the weather is doing. For example. If I fish Altona in close and I know the weather will turn to a strong southerly then I look out for this. Eg. Fawkner Beacon goes from N 5knots to South 20knots then I know I have a small window to get back. I even would look at South Channel island and usually gives me plenty of warning as well.

Offshore winds can fish a stronger wind however they are also deceiving and can make headway into the wind a lot harder and can be dangerous especially on a yak. Not because of waves but because of the wind pushing you out. I recall a Japanese yakker who wasn't found from Altona and the wind that day picked up to strong offshore wind. Before you know it you could be out. also seen a rescue of a paddle boarder from Campbells cove who went out in 20 knots north winds but because it was sheltered didn't realise the danger they were in.
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Re: Weather forecasting

Postby outback paul » 31 Jan 2020, 18:44

I particularly like Fishranger for wind & tide forecasts, and find the information displayed in a user-friendly way.

Another page worth checking for live wind conditions (not a forecast) is
This gives you live wind information from a number of key weather stations around PPB & the west side of WPB, so it gives you an idea of what might be coming your way soon.
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