Lincoln City Nelscott Reef Swell Statistics, May: All Swell – Any Wind
This picture describes the variation of swells directed at Lincoln City Nelscott Reef through an average May and is based upon 1910 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the coast so we have chosen the best grid node based on what we know about Lincoln City Nelscott Reef. In the case of Lincoln City Nelscott Reef, the best grid node is 38 km away (24 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 represent increasing wave sizes. Very small swells of less than 0.5m (1.5 feet) high are shown in blue. These were forecast only 9% of the time. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft) are shown in red. In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell occurs.
The diagram implies that the dominant swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was W, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the WNW. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Lincoln City Nelscott Reef 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 plot. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at Lincoln City Nelscott Reef, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical May, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Lincoln City Nelscott Reef run for about 91% 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.