Arawhata Swell Statistics, All Year: All Swell – Any Wind
This picture illustrates the range of swells directed at Arawhata through a typical year. It is based on 26868 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 Arawhata. In the case of Arawhata, the best grid node is 27 km away (17 miles).
The rose diagram shows the distribution of swell sizes and swell direction, 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 occurred only 16% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red represents the largest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how often that size swell occurs.
The diagram indicates that the most common swell direction, shown by the longest spokes, was WSW, whereas the the most common wind blows from the W. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Arawhata and away from the coast. We group these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To avoid confusion we don't show these in the rose plot. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at Arawhata, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average year, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Arawhata run for about 84% 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.