Rockpiles Swell Statistics, September: Surf with Light or Offshore Winds
This image shows only the swells directed at Rockpiles that coincided with light winds or offshore conditions over a normal September. It is based on 1920 predictions, one every 3 hours. The direction of the spokes show where quality surf generating swell comes from. Five colours show increasing wave sizes. The smallest swells, less than 0.5m (1.5 feet), high are coloured blue. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red shows the largest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how often that size swell happens.
The diagram indicates that the prevailing swell direction, shown by the longest spokes, was S, whereas the the most common wind blows from the ENE. The chart at the bottom shows the same thing but without direction information. For example, swells larger than 1.5 feet (0.5m) coincided with good wind conditions 14% of the time, equivalent to 4 days. Open sea swells exceeding >3m (>10ft) are unlikely to arise in a normal September. Taking into account the ratio of these swells that coincided with predicted offshore winds, and given the fact that Rockpiles is exposed to open water swells, we think that that clean surf can be found at Rockpiles about 14% of the time and that surf is spoilt by onshore wind 33% of the time. This is means that we expect 14 days with waves in a typical September, of which 4 days should be clean enough to surf.
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.