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Bolsa Chica ratings
Quality on a good day: 2.7
Consistency of Surf: 3.0
Difficulty Level: 2.0
Wind and Kite Surfing: 1.0
Crowds: 2.3

Overall: 3.1

See all 18 ratings

Based on 6 votes. Vote


Surf Report Feed

Bolsa Chica Swell Statistics, February: All Swell – Any Wind

The graph illustrates the range of swells directed at Bolsa Chica through an average February. It is based on 2664 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 best grid node based on what we know about Bolsa Chica. In this particular case the best grid node is 23 km away (14 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 illustrate increasing wave sizes. Blue shows the smallest swells, less that 0.5m (1.5 feet) high. These occurred only 12% of the time. Green and yellow illustrate 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 commonly that size swell was forecast.

The diagram implies that the most common swell direction, shown by the longest spokes, was SW, whereas the the most common wind blows from the WNW. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Bolsa Chica and away from the coast. We lump these in 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 clean enough to surf at Bolsa Chica, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical February, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Bolsa Chica run for about 2.0% 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.