Ajo Swell Statistics, October: All Swell – Any Wind
The rose diagram shows the range of swells directed at Ajo over a normal October. It is based on 2480 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the coast so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Ajo. In this particular case the best grid node is 10 km away (6 miles).
The rose diagram describes the distribution of swell sizes and swell direction, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but lacks direction information. Five colours represent increasing wave sizes. Very small swells of less than 0.5m (1.5 feet) high are shown in blue. These were forecast only 8% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and biggest swells greater than >3m (>10ft) are shown in red. In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell was forecast.
The diagram suggests that the dominant swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was NW, whereas the the prevailing wind blows from the SSE. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Ajo and out to sea. We lump these in with the no surf category of the bar chart. To keep it simple we don't show these in the rose diagram. Because wind determines whether or not waves are surfable at Ajo, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical October, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at Ajo run for about 92% of the time.
IMPORTANT: Beta version feature! Swell heights are open water values from NWW3. There is no attempt to model near-shore effects. Coastal wave heights will generally be less, especially if the break does not have unobstructed exposure to the open ocean.