Arawhata Swell Statistics, All Year: All Swell – Any Wind
The graph describes the range of swells directed at Arawhata over a normal year, based on 23151 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind or surf right at the coast so we have chosen the most applicable grid node based on what we know about Arawhata. In this particular case the best grid node is 27 km away (17 miles).
The rose diagram describes the distribution of swell directions and swell sizes, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing 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 17% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red illustrates the highest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell was forecast.
The diagram implies that the prevailing swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was WSW, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the W. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Arawhata and offshore. We lump these in 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 expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical year, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Arawhata run for about 83% 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.