This picture describes the variation of swells directed at Capbreton - Le Santocha over a normal October and is based upon 1736 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 most applicable grid node based on what we know about Capbreton - Le Santocha, and at Capbreton - Le Santocha the best grid node is 39 km away (24 miles).
The rose diagram illustrates the distribution of swell directions and swell sizes, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but lacks direction information. Five colours illustrate increasing wave sizes. Blue shows the smallest swells, less that 0.5m (1.5 feet) high. These happened only 8% of the time. Green and yellow illustrate increasing swell sizes and red shows the highest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how often that size swell happens.
The diagram indicates that the most common swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was WNW, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the ESE. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Capbreton - Le Santocha and away from the coast. We combine these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To keep it simple we don't show these in the rose diagram. Because wind determines whether or not waves are good for surfing at Capbreton - Le Santocha, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical October, swells large enough to cause clean enough to surf waves at Capbreton - Le Santocha run for about 92% 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.