Orakawa Swell Statistics, November: All Swell – Any Wind
The graph describes the range of swells directed at Orakawa through a typical November, based on 1726 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind or surf right at the shore so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Orakawa. In the case of Orakawa, the best grid node is 43 km away (27 miles).
The rose diagram illustrates the distribution of swell sizes and swell direction, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but without direction information. Five colours show increasing wave sizes. The smallest swells, less than 0.5m (1.5 feet), high are coloured blue. These were forecast only 33% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red illustrates highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell was forecast.
The diagram implies that the dominant swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was ENE, 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 Orakawa 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 graph. Because wind determines whether or not waves are surfable at Orakawa, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average November, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at Orakawa run for about 15% 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.