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Surf Break Rating

Rate Goolwa Rivermouth


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Goolwa Rivermouth Swell Statistics, May: All Swell – Any Wind

The graph shows the variation of swells directed at Goolwa Rivermouth through a typical May. It is based on 2448 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind or surf right at the shore so we have chosen the most applicable grid node based on what we know about Goolwa Rivermouth. In the case of Goolwa Rivermouth, the best grid node is 59 km away (37 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 show increasing wave sizes. The smallest swells, less than 0.5m (1.5 feet), high are coloured blue. These occurred only 1.6% of the time. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and red represents biggest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell occurs.

The diagram implies that the most common swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was SSW, whereas the the prevailing wind blows from the NW. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Goolwa Rivermouth and offshore. 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 Goolwa Rivermouth, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average May, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Goolwa Rivermouth run for about 98% 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.