Maine Beach Swell Statistics, February: All Swell – Any Wind
This picture describes the combination of swells directed at Maine Beach through a typical February. It is based on 2032 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind or surf right at the shore so we have chosen the most applicable grid node based on what we know about Maine Beach, and at Maine Beach the best grid node is 30 km away (19 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 show increasing wave sizes. The smallest swells, less than 0.5m (1.5 feet), high are coloured blue. These occurred 59% of the time. Green and yellow illustrate increasing swell sizes and red shows highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell happens.
The diagram implies that the dominant swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was SE, 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 Maine Beach and away from the coast. We group these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To avoid confusion we don't show these in the rose graph. Because wind determines whether or not waves are surfable at Maine Beach, you can load a different image that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average February, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at Maine Beach run for about 41% 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.