Tuamotu Island Swell Statistics, Summer: All Swell – Any Wind
This picture describes the variation of swells directed at Tuamotu Island over a normal southern hemisphere summer, based on 6365 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 Tuamotu Island. In the case of Tuamotu Island, the best grid node is 33 km away (21 miles).
The rose diagram shows the distribution of swell sizes and directions, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing but lacks direction information. Five colours illustrate increasing wave sizes. Blue shows the smallest swells, less that 0.5m (1.5 feet) high. These happened only 4% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red represents highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft). In each graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how often that size swell occurs.
The diagram indicates that the most common swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was SE, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the NNE. Because the wave model grid is offshore, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Tuamotu Island 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 plot. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at Tuamotu Island, you can load a different image that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. During a typical southern hemisphere summer, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Tuamotu Island run for about 96% 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.