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Burleigh Heads ratings
Quality on a good day: 4.3
Consistency of Surf: 4.0
Difficulty Level: 3.8
Wind and Kite Surfing: 1.8
Crowds: 2.0

Overall: 4.0

See all 18 ratings

Based on 6 votes. Vote


Surf Report Feed

Burleigh Heads Swell Statistics, Winter: All Swell – Any Wind

The graph shows the range of swells directed at Burleigh Heads through an average southern hemisphere winter, based on 8738 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast surf and wind right at the coast so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Burleigh Heads, and at Burleigh Heads the best grid node is 11 km away (7 miles).

The rose diagram shows the distribution of swell directions and swell sizes, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing without direction information. Five colours represent increasing wave sizes. Very small swells of less than 0.5m (1.5 feet) high are shown in blue. These were forecast only 45% of the time. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and red illustrates biggest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In each graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell happens.

The diagram suggests that the most common swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was SE, whereas the the prevailing wind blows from the SW. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Burleigh Heads and out to sea. We combine these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To simplify things we don't show these in the rose graph. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at Burleigh Heads, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical southern hemisphere winter, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Burleigh Heads run for about 20% 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.

FEATURE UPDATE: we now show red swell icons for 'open sea' swells that are travelling in an unfavourable direction for the surf break. In places, these swells may still wrap around coastlines and produce smaller waves at some breaks. They are also significant for windsurfers and other water users that tend to venture further off-shore.