Definition of whitecap in US English:



North American
  • A small wave with a foamy crest.

    ‘the wind pushed whitecaps across the surface of the water’
    • ‘Offshore, breakers swelled in the whitecaps and then crashed in the shallow water, strong enough to body surf for twenty yards.’
    • ‘Paddling on the river is easy and relaxing - until winds at 30 miles per hour transform the waters into whitecaps breaking over the bow of your little kayak.’
    • ‘The wind lashed the water into a choppy expanse of whitecaps.’
    • ‘The blue, blue sea, specked with whitecaps, the dramatic, green-clad peaks, and the colorful beachside villages look (especially from about a mile away) like a dream come true.’
    • ‘The wind picked up on Sunday putting some whitecaps on some swells off shore and then mother nature unleashed a storm that was very out of character for this time of year.’
    • ‘The squall that had blown in just as we left the mainland was now peeling spray off the whitecaps, and I was drenched.’
    • ‘Far off, other mountain peaks descended into smaller whitecaps and waves of hills that broke against the base of Cadillac Mountain.’
    • ‘At high tide, the little bay looks deep and blue and can even develop some modest whitecaps.’
    • ‘If you imagine the ground as the surface of a sea, these waves range from ripples to choppy whitecaps to long, slow swells.’
    • ‘The wind was blowing hard, driving big waves before it and occasionally pushing whitecaps over their tops.’
    • ‘The sky blazed blue, and the ocean glittered with foam from little whitecaps - it was just windy enough to cause them.’
    • ‘The bright colors of their sails flashed across the whitecaps before disappearing in the heavy swells.’
    • ‘Short, shallow fetches prevent major whitecaps on small bodies of water, and a leeward shoreline always is within reach.’
    • ‘I can see whitecaps out on the water, but the ship rides so smooth that I can hardly tell we're underway.’
    • ‘Whether a coast is perceived may depend on the height of bird, the amount of moonlight, or presence of whitecaps.’
    • ‘Jake accepted the pole from Abby, and the two quietly watched the whitecaps in the bay, while the clouds lazily drifted overhead.’
    • ‘Wherever possible, he writes with a seaman's lingo of seaways, gunwales, swells and whitecaps.’
    • ‘Two years later I sat in the little town of Loreto watching the whitecaps blow over the ocean.’
    • ‘‘It's getting rough,’ she observed to herself, seeing whitecaps breaking on the water in the distance.’
    • ‘The wind was blowing (you can tell from the whitecaps on the waves), the clouds were low, and it was raining.’
    breaker, billow, roller, comber, ripple, white horse, white cap
    View synonyms