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Sunset Cliffs ratings
Quality on a good day: 2.9
Consistency of Surf: 2.1
Difficulty Level: 3.9
Wind and Kite Surfing: 1.0
Crowds: 1.6

Overall: 2.5

See all 18 ratings

Based on 6 votes. Vote


Surf Report Feed

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

The rose diagram shows the range of swells directed at Sunset Cliffs through a typical October. It is based on 2480 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 most applicable grid node based on what we know about Sunset Cliffs. In this particular case the best grid node is 39 km away (24 miles).

The rose diagram shows the distribution of swell sizes and swell direction, 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 were forecast only 47% of the time. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and red illustrates biggest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In each graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell was forecast.

The diagram suggests that the most common swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was WSW, whereas the the prevailing wind blows from the WNW. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Sunset Cliffs and away from the coast. We group 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 clean enough to surf at Sunset Cliffs, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average October, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Sunset Cliffs run for about 53% 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.