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Isla Canela Swell Statistics, Autumn: All Swell – Any Wind

The graph illustrates the range of swells directed at Isla Canela over a normal northern hemisphere autumn, based on 8724 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast surf and wind right at the shore so we have chosen the best grid node based on what we know about Isla Canela. In this particular case the best grid node is 39 km away (24 miles).

The rose diagram illustrates the distribution of swell sizes and swell direction, 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 happened 60% of the time. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and red illustrates largest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell occurs.

The diagram suggests that the most common swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was WSW, whereas the the most common wind blows from the NW. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Isla Canela and out to sea. We combine these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To simplify things we don't show these in the rose diagram. Because wind determines whether or not waves are surfable at Isla Canela, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical northern hemisphere autumn, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at Isla Canela run for about 40% 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.