Anna Maria Key Swell Statistics, March: Surf with Light or Offshore Winds
This image shows only the swells directed at Anna Maria Key that coincided with light winds or offshore conditions over a normal March. It is based on 2217 predictions, one every 3 hours. The direction of the spokes show where quality surf generating swell comes from. Five colours illustrate increasing wave sizes. Blue shows the smallest swells, less that 0.5m (1.5 feet) high. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red shows the highest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In each graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell occurs.
The diagram implies that the prevailing swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was NW, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the NE. 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 6% of the time, equivalent to 2 days. Open sea swells exceeding >3m (>10ft) are unlikely to happen in a normal March. Taking into account the ratio of these swells that coincided with expected offshore winds, and given the fact that Anna Maria Key is exposed to open water swells, we think that that clean surf can be found at Anna Maria Key about 6% of the time and that surf is spoilt by onshore wind 20% of the time. This is means that we expect 8 days with waves in a typical March, of which 2 days should be clean enough to surf.
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.