Freshwater - Beach in Queenscliff Warringah NSW - SLS Beachsafe

Freshwater NSW

Swimming at Freshwater (NSW 316) started in the early 1900s when campers would arrive for the weekends and holidays. A small creek running out the north end of the beach provided fresh water for the campers and gave the beach its name. Freshwater, one of Sydney's smaller beaches, is just... Read more

Swimming at Freshwater (NSW 316) started in the early 1900s when campers would arrive for the weekends and holidays. A small creek running out the north end of the beach provided fresh water for the campers and gave the beach its name. Freshwater, one of Sydney's smaller beaches, is just 350 m long, however it is also one of the more popular and famous. The Freshwater SLSC was formed in 1907 and boasts a proud history in national competition, and in 1915 it was the site of the first surfboard riding demonstration in Australia. The surf club sits in the centre of the beach surrounded by a fenced foredune, backed by a large park and car park, with Harbord and Queenscliff headlands protruding 400 m seaward. The beach faces southeast and receives waves averaging 1.5 m. These produce three persistent rips, one against each headland, and a shifting rip in the centre (Fig. 4.215 & 4.216). The intervening bar oscillates between being attached during low waves and separated by a trough during higher wave, so that you have to swim across the rip feeder currents to the bar. All this makes for good surfing, but potentially hazardous swimming.

Swimming

Freshwater is a popular but hazardous beach with an average of 121 rescues each year, but still no lives lost between the flags, so that's where you should swim. If swimming or wading out to the bar watch for side currents. A rock pool is located on the northern platform.

Surfing

This is where it all started and it still produces good beach breaks, with the southern end best during east and southeast swell with both lefts and rights, while the northern side handles the northeast swell better and offers some protection from summer northeast winds. The official beginning of surfboard riding in Australia occurred at Freshwater Beach in 1915 when the famous Hawaiian swimmer and surfer Duke Kahanamoku gave a demonstration of his board riding skills to thousands of spectators. Forty-one years later when revisiting the surf club following the 1956 Melbourne Olympics he was delighted to see his old board had been lovingly maintained. It still has pride of place at the surf club.

Fishing

The northern rocks have good access and are the most popular location in this area with permanent gutters along the northern rocks. The beach can produce good gutters, but is often crowded on warm days.

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Patrolled Unpatrolled Today Change Day

There are currently no services provided by Surf Life Saving Australia for this beach. Please take the time to browse the Surf Safety section of this website to learn more about staying safe when swimming at Australian beaches. Click here to visit general surf education information.

Freshwater SLSC

Northern Beaches Council

Information

About

Queenscliff, NSW 2096

Length:
0.35km

General Beach Hazard Rating:
7/10 (Highly hazardous)

Beach Key:
 nsw316

Nearby beaches

Hazards

  • Sharks
    Sharks
  • Bluebottles
    Bluebottles
  • Topographic rips
    Topographic rips
  • Strong Currents
    Strong Currents

Information Symbols

  • Formal parking area
  • Drinking water
  • Toilets
  • Dressing shed
  • Showers
  • Pool
  • Kiosk
  • Shops
  • Public phone
  • Park
  • Bus

Weather

Wednesday 20, Jun 3:16 pm

Day 17°    Night 13°
16.9°C
Morning shower or two

Water Temperature  19°C


Swell


Wind


Wind: Southeasterly 15 to 20 knots, reaching up to 25 knots offshore early in the morning. Winds turning southerly 10 to 15 knots during the morning and early afternoon.
Swell: Southerly 3 metres, tending southeasterly 2.5 to 3 metres during the morning.
Seas: 1.5 to 2 metres, decreasing to 1 metre around midday.
Weather: Partly cloudy. 50% chance of showers. The chance of a thunderstorm in the early morning. Caution: Large and powerful surf conditions in the early morning are expected to be hazardous for coastal activities such as crossing bars by boat and rock fishing.

Tide

1 am
1.60m
8 am
0.27m
2 pm
1.33m
8 pm
0.53m

UV

Index: 2 (Low)

Sun protection not recommended


Radar

128 km

radar helper

Weather

Thursday 21, Jun

Day 17°    Night 12°
Cloudy

Swell


Wind


Wind: South to southeasterly 10 to 15 knots becoming variable in the evening.
Swell: Southeasterly 2 to 2.5 metres.
Seas: Below 1 metre.
Weather: Cloudy. 50% chance of showers.

Tide

2 am
1.48m
8 am
0.32m
3 pm
1.37m
9 pm
0.54m

UV

Index: 2 (Low)

Sun protection not recommended


Weather

Wed 20, Jun to Wed 27, Jun


Swell


Wind


Wind: East to northeasterly 10 to 15 knots becoming variable about 10 knots during the morning.
Swell: Southeasterly 1.5 metres inshore, increasing to 1.5 to 2 metres offshore.
Seas: Below 1 metre.
Weather: Partly cloudy.

Tide


UV

Wed 20th 2 (Low) Sun protection not recommended
Thu 21st 2 (Low) Sun protection not recommended
Fri 22nd 2 (Low) Sun protection not recommended
Sat 23rd 2 (Low) Sun protection not recommended

SLSA provides this information as a guide only. Surf conditions are variable and therefore this information should not be relied upon as a substitute for observation of local conditions and an understanding of your abilities in the surf. SLSA reminds you to always swim between the red and yellow flags and never swim at unpatrolled beaches. SLSA takes all care and responsibility for any translation but it cannot guarantee that all translations will be accurate.

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