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Donabate Swell Statistics, April: All Swell – Any Wind

This image shows the combination of swells directed at Donabate through an average April, based on 2880 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (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 Donabate, and at Donabate the best grid node is 54 km away (34 miles).

The rose diagram describes the distribution of swell sizes and swell direction, 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 happened 72% of the time. Green and yellow illustrate increasing swell sizes and red shows biggest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In each graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell was forecast.

The diagram suggests that the dominant swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was S, whereas the the prevailing wind blows from the W. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Donabate and away from the coast. 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 Donabate, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical April, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Donabate run for about 28% 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.