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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, All Year: All Swell – Any Wind

This chart illustrates the range of swells directed at White Sands through an average year. It is based on 34622 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf 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 sizes and swell direction, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing without direction information. Five colours illustrate increasing wave sizes. Blue shows the smallest swells, less that 0.5m (1.5 feet) high. These were forecast only 56% of the time. Green and yellow represent increasing swell sizes and red represents the largest swells, greater than >3m (>10ft). In either graph, the area of any colour is proportional to how often that size swell was forecast.

The diagram indicates that the prevailing swell direction, shown by the largest spokes, was NE, 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 White Sands and offshore. We combine these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To keep it simple we don't show these in the rose diagram. Because wind determines whether or not waves are surfable at White Sands, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were expected to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. In a typical year, swells large enough to cause good for surfing waves at White Sands run for about 17% 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.