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neaps tide


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:wave hi all me & sis have hired san remo for a week in september, from the 19 th so if you see us give us a wave, but the one thing i'm puzzled about is the tide, had a look at a tide chart & it said that on the 25th there is a neap tide,so what is a neap tide & how will that affect us if we go across breydon ? loribear 
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I always find it easier to explain a neap tide in comparison with a spring tide...

A spring tide gives you the lowest low water depths (good for getting high boats through low bridges)

but higher high water depths so you may be more restricted in the length of the time either side of low water that you can get through a bridge.

This means that the tidal range (difference in depth between high and low tide) is at its highest.

It also means that the amount of water sloshing around with the tide is at its greatest and hence the tidal currents can be stronger (particlarly important in the South as there the current is stronger than on the Northern rivers)

A neap tide is at the other end of the tidal curve.

The low water depth is higher than a low water spring, so high boats will have less room at the bridges even if they time it for low water.

The high water depth, though is lower than for a spring so you may find that you have a wider period either side of low water when you can get through a bridge, remember that the BA quote their bridge heights as "at an average high water" so with a neap you should have at least the published height available.

It also means that the amount of water sloshing around with the tide is at its lowest and hence the tidal currents will be weaker.

As for going through Yarmouth and up Breydon, the nominal time is often seen as at "low water slack" when the tide coming in is cancelling out the river current. If you get there early you may have the current and the ebb tide taking you onto the bridges.

With a neap tide this won't be as bad as it would be with a spring.

On Breydon itself you will have the flood tide under you helping you up towards Berney Arms. Here a neap tide will give you less "push" than a spring. You may also see less of the mud than for a spring (as the low tide will have been higher) but that water outside the posts is not deep enough, dont fal to the temptation, stay between the posts!

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Dont forget though if it is a neap at the beginning of the week 7 days later it will be springs again!!

Indeed Gav, and that is of particular relevance to some boats on the broads, so for instance, you may get under the YH bridges at the beginning of the week on a low spring and then on the return journey a week later find there is not enough bridge clearance to return south even if there has been no shift in the winds or any rainfall upstream.

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Yes absolutely right..

Lorri, the best thing is to plan your passage using the excellent tide calculator on the Broads web site (Link below) - Also helps you save alot of fuel if you run along nicely with the tide in each direction!

Have a good holiday - we should be back into the Broads system at some point either Friday or Saturday so you may see us passing by somewhere!

http://www.broads-authority.gov.uk/boat ... ables.html

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