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Cardiff Reef ratings
Quality on a good day: 3.3
Consistency of Surf: 4.0
Difficulty Level: 3.0
Wind and Kite Surfing: 1.0
Crowds: 2.3

Overall: 3.2

See all 18 ratings

Based on 5 votes. Vote


Surf Report Feed

Cardiff Reef Swell Statistics, December: All Swell – Any Wind

The graph describes the combination of swells directed at Cardiff Reef through a typical December and is based upon 2457 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the coastline so we have chosen the most applicable grid node based on what we know about Cardiff Reef. In the case of Cardiff Reef, the best grid node is 19 km away (12 miles).

The rose diagram illustrates the distribution of swell sizes and directions, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but 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 occurred only 36% of the time. Green and yellow illustrate increasing swell sizes and highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft) are shown in red. In each graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell was forecast.

The diagram suggests that the most common swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was W, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the NNW. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Cardiff Reef and offshore. We group 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 Cardiff Reef, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average December, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Cardiff Reef run for about 64% 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.