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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, March: All Swell – Any Wind

This picture describes the variation of swells directed at El Zonte through an average March, based on 2964 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the coast so we have chosen the best 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 illustrates the distribution of swell sizes and directions, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but 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 1.0% of the time. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and red illustrates the highest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell was forecast.

The diagram implies that the dominant swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was SSW, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the NNE. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from El Zonte and away from the coast. We group these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To avoid confusion we don't show these in the rose diagram. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at El Zonte, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical March, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at El Zonte run for about 99% 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.