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White Sands ratings
Quality on a good day: 1.7
Consistency of Surf: 1.7
Difficulty Level: 3.7
Wind and Kite Surfing: 1.0
Crowds: 2.0

Overall: 1.8

See all 18 ratings

Based on 3 votes. Vote


Surf Report Feed

White Sands Swell Statistics, September: All Swell – Any Wind

This chart describes the range of swells directed at White Sands through a typical September, based on 2880 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast surf and wind right at the coastline so we have chosen the most applicable grid node based on what we know about White Sands. In this particular case the best grid node is 32 km away (20 miles).

The rose diagram shows 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 happened only 61% of the time. Green and yellow illustrate increasing swell sizes and highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft) are shown in red. In both graphs, the area of any colour is proportional to how frequently that size swell happens.

The diagram suggests that the most common swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was NE, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the SW. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from White Sands and out to sea. We group these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To simplify things we don't show these in the rose graph. Because wind determines whether or not waves are surfable at White Sands, you can load a different image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average September, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at White Sands run for about 14% 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.