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Sunset Beach ratings
Quality on a good day: 2.0
Consistency of Surf: 2.0
Difficulty Level: 1.0
Crowds: 5.0

Overall: 3.0

See all 18 ratings

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Surf Report Feed

Sunset Beach Swell Statistics, October: All Swell – Any Wind

The rose diagram shows the combination of swells directed at Sunset Beach through an average October and is based upon 2961 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast surf and wind right at the coast so we have chosen the best grid node based on what we know about Sunset Beach, and at Sunset Beach the best grid node is 37 km away (23 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 illustrate increasing wave sizes. Blue shows the smallest swells, less that 0.5m (1.5 feet) high. These happened 88% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red shows biggest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how commonly that size swell happens.

The diagram implies that the prevailing swell direction, shown by the longest spokes, was SW, whereas the the prevailing wind blows from the NE. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Sunset Beach and out to sea. We lump these in with the no surf category of the bar chart. To simplify things we don't show these in the rose plot. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at Sunset Beach, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical October, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Sunset Beach run for about 12% 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.