Apache Pier Swell Statistics, March: All Swell – Any Wind
The figure describes the combination of swells directed at Apache Pier over a normal March, based on 2220 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast surf and wind right at the coastline so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Apache Pier, and at Apache Pier the best grid node is 39 km away (24 miles).
The rose diagram describes the distribution of swell directions and swell sizes, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but without direction information. Five colours show increasing wave sizes. The smallest swells, less than 0.5m (1.5 feet), high are coloured blue. These happened only 39% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red shows highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell happens.
The diagram suggests that the prevailing swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was SSE, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the WNW. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Apache Pier and out to sea. We combine these 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 Apache Pier, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical March, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at Apache Pier run for about 61% 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.