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El Zonte ratings
Quality on a good day: 3.5
Consistency of Surf: 4.5
Difficulty Level: 4.0
Wind and Kite Surfing: 1.0
Crowds: 3.0

Overall: 3.7

See all 18 ratings

Based on 2 votes. Vote


Surf Report Feed

El Zonte Swell Statistics, April: All Swell – Any Wind

This image illustrates the variation of swells directed at El Zonte through an average April and is based upon 2160 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 optimum grid node based on what we know about El Zonte. In the case of El Zonte, the best grid node is 55 km away (34 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 illustrate increasing wave sizes. Blue shows the smallest swells, less that 0.5m (1.5 feet) high. These were forecast only 0% of the time. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and red represents largest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell was forecast.

The diagram suggests that the prevailing swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was SSW, whereas the the most common wind blows from the WNW. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from El Zonte and offshore. We lump these in with the no surf category of the bar chart. To keep it simple we don't show these in the rose graph. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at El Zonte, you can load a different image 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 El Zonte 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.