Scarborough Beach Swell Statistics, Summer: All Swell – Any Wind
The rose diagram illustrates the range of swells directed at Scarborough Beach over a normal northern hemisphere summer and is based upon 6538 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind or surf right at the coast so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Scarborough Beach, and at Scarborough Beach the best grid node is 25 km away (16 miles).
The rose diagram illustrates the distribution of swell directions and swell sizes, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but 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 occurred 19% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red shows the largest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell was forecast.
The diagram suggests that the dominant swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was SE, whereas the the most common wind blows from the SW. Because the wave model grid is out to sea, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Scarborough Beach and offshore. We group 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 Scarborough Beach, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical northern hemisphere summer, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Scarborough Beach run for about 81% 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.