THE SEVERN BORE
SURFERS & SPECTATORS
The Severn bore website brings up-to date information on the Severn bore and brings together information and events in the local community. Also through Facebook, we deliver live news feeds on river conditions, tides and bores posted by surfers and spectators.
Unlike any other website the information is current and always changing, just like the river! Keep up to date by liking our .
For regular Severn bore spectators and for those that are here for the first time, here is your route to everything you need to know about the Severn Bore!
FACTS ABOUT THE SEVERN BORE
HISTORY OF THE SEVERN BORE
A river bore is caused by the tidal surge of the sea being funnelled up stream, around 60 rivers in the world have bores, 8 in UK.
The shape of the river Severn and the fact it has the third highest tidal range in the world creates one of longest rideable waves in the world. Local surfer Steve King holds the record of 7.6 miles of stand up surfing on the severn bore and 12.8 miles on the Bono, Indonesia!
July 21 1955 Colonel 'mad' Jack Churchill made his own board and surfed the Severn bore for the first time.
Now all over the world surfers of all ability take on mighty river bores, like in China, hang-chou-fe river waves can reach 25ft (7.5m)!!
The river Severn has the third highest tidal range in the world, only the bay of Fundy (north America) and Ungava bay ( Hudson straits) are bigger.
The tidal range on the Severn can be as much as 15m (49ft), this combined to the 'funnel' shaped estuary causes the incoming tide to create great a bore. The front of the oncoming surge of water creates a visible wave, varying in height. From around Fretherne the bore can be seen forming right up to Maisemore weir, around 20 miles of river where the bore can be seen, dissipating and reforming sometimes miles at a time. As the river narrows around Minsterworth the bore has less area to spread over thus causing larger tides to have an increase in wave height.
There are many factors contributing to a 'good bore' a SW wind gives a good driving force behind the bore, increasing its speed and power. Bores can be between 8-12mph on the river Severn.
Less fresh water flowing in the river allows the tidal bore to travel further inland, maintaining more of its speed and power. Low air pressure is also a key factor as this allows the movement of water more freely, thus assisting the bore in its travel.
A high tide at sharpness docks over 9m will generally produce a visible bore somewhere along its course. Although the bigger tides around the 10m mark attract more attention smaller tides with favourable conditions are equally spectacular and also rideable for the would be bore rider!
Even on the smaller tides you will see spectators and surfers heading down to the river Severn. According to some sources the largest bore on the Severn was October 15th 1966, a spectacular 9.2ft (2.8m)!
Often the spring and autumn tides are the biggest but generally most month’s high tides will bring a bore down the Severn through Gloucestershire.