|Australia, NSW, Umina, Central Coast, Box Head (beach break).|
What's it like
Box head is a great point break on the central coast. The break is roughly 3km from the beach and so is rarely plagued with the common beach disease, i.e. Surfers (PS I 'm a surfer so i can say that :P ). Although during good swells it can be frequented by tow in surfers. The break is best with a S-SE swell. Waves continue to break and reform for a distance of at least 500m in good conditions (haven't measured with a ruler so these are estimates).
The break runs beside the Box Head headlands towards the mouth of brisbane water. Due to this the tides too play an important part in the conditions. When the tide is going out the waves tend to come in slower and peak a little higher and steeper. The break is a pleasure for paddlers as the water off the channel is nice and deep offering a safe wave free shoulder to paddle back out on. On really good days I've been able to ride all the way back to the mouth of Brisbane water, an estimated 3km, so you can get some great rides in :D
I hope I've done the break some justice without exaggerating its potential, but like most things, everyone will have their own unique experience and opinion of any place... this one included.
I must stress that when conditions are good the surf for paddlers here is excellent but if the conditions are not right it can be like a lake. I've been out to the break probably 10 times all up and 3 times it was so big I didn't want to paddle out. 2 times it's been too small to bother with and The other times it's ranged from small but fun and educational through too 9/10 on way to perfect.
How to get there
If coming from Sydney travel up the F3 freeway till the Gosford Exit (Kariong Interchange) at second set of lights turn left down Woy Woy Rd. Follow till T-intersection with Rawson Rd turn right. Turn right at roundabout onto Ocean Beach Rd. Follow Ocean Beach rd until roundabout at West Street and turn left down west street. Follow West street Un till you reach Barrenjoey Rd which should be 8th Street on right. At end of Barrenjoey Rd Find Parking space along The Esplanade somewhere near a beach access path. Enjoy.
Alternatively you could catch Sydney Ferry to Ettalong Beach (I'm pretty sure but not positive) and paddle from the ferry terminal down brisbane water and out to the break.
As locals we tend to access this break by paddling out from the beach near the intersection of "The Esplanade" and "Barrenjoey Rd" Umina.
Might see some fisherman and boaters. There also tend to be a few sea kayakers, jet skiers and the occasional tow in surfer on really good days. Also watch out for the Sydney ferry that comes through every now and then.
Hope all this will help anyone looking for a decent break.
Nearest weather station (°C):