Determining the right time to surf is really a science. I utilize a few apps daily to see what the upcoming conditions are. It's also a good idea to have a network of other local surfers that you coordinate with. These are my favorite surf apps. Especially on the East Coast, it's hard to get accurate forecasts, so I use a few different ones to see if they are giving the same information. Here are my favorites:
Stormrider Surf Guide - Cost $7.99. It is worth every penny! It will give you the basics and what to expect about the conditions of many surf spots around the globe. It does NOT give exact locations (i.e. specific cross streets), but it will give you information on the bigger beaches and you can use that for specific breaks. You can establish which wind directions, swell directions and tides bring the best conditions in your area. Take the guess work out of trying to find ideal conditions.
Swell Info - Free. This is the app version of swellinfo.com. Typically, this site and app give you real-time eyes on the conditions of your favorite spot. It shows current air temps, water temps, swell height & direction and tides information. It is conveniently color coded so you can see which days are your best chance for awesome conditions. It is set up with a 7 day forecast, so you can plan ahead.
Surfline - Free. This is the same company that forecasts World Surf League events. This app is great because it has built-in cameras at a lot of locations. However, the forecast isn't updated as often if you're an east coast surfer (bummer, we're just small fish to the forecast behemoth). I use this app most because of the cameras. This app gives you a 3 day forecast in the free version, you can upgrade to see more.
MSW Surf Forecast - Free. This app is created by Magic Seaweed. It is similar to Stormrider Surf Guide, but comes with less detail. Great for double checking forecasts or getting another opinion from Swell and Surfline. It's usually the last one I check because it's been hit or miss for the east coast. I really like the layout of it and enjoy checking the news feed for current happenings in the surf world. Another plus is the limitless locations you can store on this app. It allows me to check in on my west coast friends.
World Surf League - Fee. This is a fun one I keep just to stay up-to-date on the happenings in the pro world of surfing. Great for news as well as the best way to watch pro events live. If you are a die hard surf fan, they have a great fantasy surf league you can play.
Let me know which apps you use. Are there any good ones I'm missing out on?