Lorient Swell Statistics, March: All Swell – Any Wind
This picture illustrates the combination of swells directed at Lorient through an average March. It is based on 1972 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the coastline so we have chosen the most applicable grid node based on what we know about Lorient, and at Lorient the best grid node is 21 km away (13 miles).
The rose diagram shows the distribution of swell directions and swell sizes, 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 only 4% of the time. Green and yellow illustrate increasing swell sizes and red shows largest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell happens.
The diagram suggests that the dominant swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was NE, whereas the the most common wind blows from the E. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Lorient and offshore. We combine these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To keep it simple we don't show these in the rose plot. Because wind determines whether or not waves are good for surfing at Lorient, you can load a different image that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical March, swells large enough to cause clean enough to surf waves at Lorient 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.