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Akkarai Beach Swell Statistics, Spring: All Swell – Any Wind

The figure illustrates the combination of swells directed at Akkarai Beach through a typical northern hemisphere spring, based on 8682 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast surf and wind right at the shore so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Akkarai Beach. In the case of Akkarai Beach, the best grid node is 29 km away (18 miles).

The rose diagram describes the distribution of swell sizes and directions, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing without 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 occurred only 4% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and largest swells greater than >3m (>10ft) are shown in red. In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how often that size swell happens.

The diagram indicates that the dominant swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was SSE (which was the same as the most common wind direction). Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Akkarai Beach and away from the coast. 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 Akkarai Beach, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average northern hemisphere spring, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at Akkarai Beach run for about 96% 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.