Everything you need to know about The Wave
Bursting with questions about inland surfing and Wavegarden Cove technology? Here's the answers to all your FAQs as well as updates and ways to get involved.
Our top questions and answers
The surf experience
How big is the surf lake?
Our lake is measures approximately 180 metres in length by 200 metres wide at the shoreline. That's around the size of four football pitches!
What is the layout of the surf lake?
The lake is divided into six different surfing areas. These include the advanced reef area in the lake and the beginner bay area. All designed with the abilities of the surfers in mind, as well as their safety and enjoyment.
Do you need to be an experienced surfer?
We can accommodate brand new beginner surfers through to advanced surfers simultaneously on our waves. A performance pathway exists for guests to progress through the areas of the surf lake commencing in the beginner areas, and improving their skills until they are ready to take on the advanced waves.
Is the water cold?
Our lake isn't heated and is always be about 3 degrees above the ambient air temperature. Rest assured, if you're coming during the Winter or on a cold day, we provide you with a really warm and thick winter wetsuit plus optional gloves, hood and boots so you won't get cold. Unlike the ocean, our water can also warm back up quickly and we are expecting to see water temperatures increase over the next few weeks. It is a very active and intense exercise experience and therefore people only notice the cold when they first get in the water. We also have hot showers for after your surf so don't forget your towel!
What are the different wave heights and ride lengths?
The waves range from 0.5 to almost 2 metres with an average length or ride ranging from 35m to 85m depending on the wave and skill of the surfer. The average duration of a ride is 10-13 seconds.
Is it easier to learn to surf at The Wave compared to the ocean?
Beginners experience can be a speedier rate of learning at The Wave compared to the ocean. The predictability of the waves generated, the length of rides, and the removal of other distractions allows beginners to focus on technique, while enjoying close supervision from our team of Wavemakers. Advanced surfers should also expect to see a quick development in their surfing thanks to the consistency of the waves.
I’m experienced, will it be too easy?
Progression in surfing depends on practicing and how regularly you surf and the number of waves you get to ride. Unlike other sports, surfing requires the right weather conditions, in daylight hours, at a time and place you are free to surf. The Wave takes away all these variances so surfers can surf as regularly as they choose, at a time to suit them on safe and consistent waves. The Wave is a brilliant training ground to improve your surfing with on consistent waves with specialist training and coaching available.
The types of wave
What types of waves are generated?
The surf lake is capable of generating a variety of waves, from gentle, spilling beginner waves, right through to high-performance barrelling waves up to nearly 2m tall. The size and speed of waves in the surf lake can be varied, making it suitable for all abilities from beginner to advanced.
Are the waves always the same size and type?
Waves in the surf lake are generated by moving water over a shallow profile that causes a wave to form, and then fold on itself. Just like an ocean swell becomes a breaking wave when it moves over a reef or sandy beach. In the case of The Wave, water is moved by our Wavegarden Cove technology located inside the central pier of the lake .
Is the wave powerful?
The waves have a variety of powers and varies in strength and height between our beginner and advanced waves. The beauty of the Wavegarden Cove technology is that energy is constantly passed into the wave through the movement of the wave generator as it completes a cycle. This ensures that waves have consistent power, shape, height and speed through the full ride.
Sustainability and the environment
How much water is used in the surf lake?
The net evaporation rate for the surf lake will differ from year to year, but on average the annual water requirement is equivalent to that used to maintain a high quality grassed sports ground of a similar size (and only about 6% of what is used to irrigate golf courses per annum).
Is The Wave technology noisy?
The operation the surf lake creates the natural sound of peeling waves, which has minimal overall auditory impact.
How much energy is needed to generate waves?
The generator is the most energy efficient surfing wave generator available. The Wave requires about the same amount of energy per annum as would typically be used by a small, indoor aquatic centre.
Is surfing at The Wave safe?
Surfing under normal conditions is typically a very safe activity. The Wave is designed with safety as a fundamental priority. At The Wave most of the hazards of sea surfing are either avoided, managed or minimised to greatly improve surfer safety. The use of Wavemakers specifically trained in the surf lake environment and our monitoring systems further enhance surfer safety.
I’ve never surfed before - is it safe for me?
Absolutely! The Wave is a safe surfing environment perfect for people of all ages, fitness and skill levels, and is ideal for introducing the sport of surfing to those who do not have access to waves. It is also a fantastic environment for people with disabilities.
How do you keep surfers safe?
The wave generating device is located beneath a pier which physically separates the surfer from the device. The pier is shrouded in a barrier that guests cannot penetrate, but allows water to pass through, and has no effect on the size, quality or shape of the wave. We deliver a safety briefing to all guests and make specific recommendations to keep you safe, including a guide on how to finish your waves well.
Can I surf in the rain?
Yes. You’re going to get wet either way…
What if there is thunder and lightning?
In the event of lightning or other major weather occurrences, we will ask everyone in the lake to leave to ensure the safety of everyone. If you session is cut short, we will provide a refund based on how long you were in the water. However, a session which lasts 45 minutes or more is considered complete and no refund will be given
Are dogs allowed on site?
Unfortunately we are not able to allow dogs or other pets at The Wave, with the exception of Service or Assistance dogs. Please contact the customer services team on 0333 016 4133 for any further information.