Nootka Island Swell Statistics, All Year: All Swell – Any Wind
The figure describes the variation of swells directed at Nootka Island over a normal year, based on 22223 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast surf and wind right at the coastline so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Nootka Island. In this particular case the best grid node is 35 km away (22 miles).
The rose diagram describes the distribution of swell sizes and directions, 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 9% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red illustrates the highest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In each graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how often that size swell occurs.
The diagram indicates that the dominant swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was WSW, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the SW. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Nootka Island and offshore. We group these 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 Nootka Island, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical year, swells large enough to cause clean enough to surf waves at Nootka Island run for about 78% 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.