Aligator Rock Swell Statistics, February: Surf with Light or Offshore Winds
This image shows only the swells directed at Aligator Rock that coincided with light winds or offshore conditions over a normal February. It is based on 2102 predictions, one every 3 hours. The direction of the spokes show where quality surf generating swell comes from. Five colours represent increasing wave sizes. Very small swells of less than 0.5m (1.5 feet) high are shown in blue. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and red shows highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell was forecast.
The diagram implies that the most common swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was NW, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the E. The chart at the bottom shows the same thing but without direction information. For example, swells larger than 1.5 feet (0.5m) coincided with good wind conditions 58% of the time, equivalent to 16 days. Expect open water swells to exceed >3m (>10ft) 16% of the time (4 days). Taking into account the proportion of these swells that coincided with expected offshore winds, and given the fact that Aligator Rock is exposed to open water swells, we estimate that clean surf can be found at Aligator Rock about 58% of the time and that surf is blown out by onshore wind 20% of the time. This is means that we expect 22 days with waves in a typical February, of which 16 days should be surfable.
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.