Centinela Swell Statistics, November: All Swell – Any Wind
This image shows the combination of swells directed at Centinela through an average November, based on 2147 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 best grid node based on what we know about Centinela, and at Centinela the best grid node is 57 km away (35 miles).
The rose diagram shows the distribution of swell sizes and directions, 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 were forecast only 0% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red illustrates the biggest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In either 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 longest spokes, was SSW, whereas the the prevailing wind blows from the S. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Centinela and out to sea. We lump these in 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 Centinela, you can load a different image that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical November, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Centinela run for about 100% 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.