uk es it fr pt nl
Isle of Palms Pier ratings
Quality on a good day: 2.7
Consistency of Surf: 2.3
Difficulty Level: 1.9
Wind and Kite Surfing: 3.9
Crowds: 3.0

Overall: 3.4

See all 18 ratings

Based on 9 votes. Vote


Surf Report Feed

Isle of Palms Pier Swell Statistics, Winter: All Swell – Any Wind

This image describes the combination of swells directed at Isle of Palms Pier through a typical northern hemisphere winter. It is based on 8485 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast surf and wind right at the coast so we have chosen the best grid node based on what we know about Isle of Palms Pier. In this particular case the best grid node is 42 km away (26 miles).

The rose diagram shows the distribution of swell sizes and swell direction, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but lacks direction information. Five colours represent increasing wave sizes. Very small swells of less than 0.5m (1.5 feet) high are shown in blue. These happened 37% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red shows highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how often that size swell occurs.

The diagram indicates that the most common swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was SE, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the NW. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Isle of Palms Pier and away from the coast. We lump these in 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 good for surfing at Isle of Palms Pier, you can load a different image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average northern hemisphere winter, swells large enough to cause clean enough to surf waves at Isle of Palms Pier run for about 63% 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.

FEATURE UPDATE: we now show red swell icons for 'open sea' swells that are travelling in an unfavourable direction for the surf break. In places, these swells may still wrap around coastlines and produce smaller waves at some breaks. They are also significant for windsurfers and other water users that tend to venture further off-shore.