High surf from Hurricane Teddy attracts surfers from across region

A high surf advisory is in effect in our area until Wednesday night, and it's no surprise that surfers took advantage of the waves Tuesday at Rhode Island beaches.

SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WLNE) – A high surf advisory is in effect in our area until Wednesday night, and it’s no surprise that surfers took advantage of the waves Tuesday at Rhode Island beaches.

“We have a lot of really great Atlantic swell this season with all the hurricanes, so we were tracking the hurricane swell and knew it was gonna hit yesterday and today,” said Clara Dahill, a member of the U.S. Coast Guard who recently moved to Massachusetts from Hawaii.

Dahill was one of the many surfers in the waters of Matunuck Beach in South Kingstown Tuesday. She made sure to catch the waves before class.

“It’s a little windy and it’s a little cold but it’s definitely worth getting in the water for,” said Dahill. “I’m trying out the East Coast surf and I really like it so far.”

Surfers at Matunuck estimated the waves were about 6 to 10 feet, and even bigger in deeper parts of the water.

That’s what drew people in from across the region, like Chris Corrente of Connecticut, who is used to surfing in California where he previously lived.

“Out (in California) it can be really aggressive. Most of the people here are smiling faces and it brings comradery to the sport where out there it can be very competitive.”

Corrente was all smiles leaving the water Tuesday.

“Today was good. It’s rare that we get waves here on the East Coast where there’s a storm out at sea and nice local conditions so, it’s a really special event. It rarely happens here and when it does, New England and its irregular coastline is a really special spot to be a surfer,” said Corrente.

However, the waters are still dangerous. A high surf warning is in effect until Wednesday evening, and with it comes dangerous rip currents. Mike Healey, spokesperson for the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, said Tuesday afternoon they hadn’t had any close calls.

But, Corrente said, it’s important that people remember these conditions are only for the experienced.

“If you don’t know what you’re doing, be careful, that’s all. No one needs to be rescued. Enjoy the ocean, it’s a beautiful thing.”

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Categories: News, Regional News, Rhode Island