Orakawa Swell Statistics, November: All Swell – Any Wind
This image describes the range of swells directed at Orakawa over a normal November, based on 2147 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the coast 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 shows the distribution of swell directions and swell sizes, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing 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 happened 34% of the time. Green and yellow show 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 often that size swell happens.
The diagram indicates that the dominant swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was ENE, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the W. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Orakawa and offshore. We combine these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To avoid confusion we don't show these in the rose plot. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at Orakawa, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical November, swells large enough to cause surfable 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.