Clifton Beach Swell Statistics, November: All Swell – Any Wind
This image illustrates the range of swells directed at Clifton Beach through an average November and is based upon 1907 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the coast so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Clifton Beach. In the case of Clifton Beach, the best grid node is 56 km away (35 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 show increasing wave sizes. The smallest swells, less than 0.5m (1.5 feet), high are coloured blue. These happened only 34% of the time. Green and yellow illustrate increasing swell sizes and largest swells greater than >3m (>10ft) are shown in red. 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 SSW, whereas the the most common wind blows from the WSW. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Clifton Beach 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 Clifton Beach, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical November, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Clifton Beach run for about 63% 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.