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Surf Report Feed

Imperial Pier (North and South) Swell Statistics, March: All Swell – Any Wind

This picture shows the variation of swells directed at Imperial Pier (North and South) over a normal March. It is based on 2964 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the shore so we have chosen the best grid node based on what we know about Imperial Pier (North and South), and at Imperial Pier (North and South) the best grid node is 35 km away (22 miles).

The rose diagram describes the distribution of swell sizes and directions, 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 happened only 4% 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 WSW, whereas the the prevailing wind blows from the WNW. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Imperial Pier (North and South) and out to sea. We combine these 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 surfable at Imperial Pier (North and South), you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical March, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at Imperial Pier (North and South) run for about 96% 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.