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Waihau Bay Surf Stats

All swells

(any wind direction)
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Good Surf

(light / offshore wind)

This picture illustrates the combination of swells directed at Waihau Bay through a typical May, based on 3440 NWW3 model predictions since 2007 (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 Waihau Bay. In the case of Waihau Bay, the best grid node is 15 km away (9 miles). The rose diagram illustrates the distribution of swell sizes and directions, 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 occurred only 68% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and red illustrates 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 N, 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 Waihau Bay and offshore. We lump these in 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 Waihau Bay, 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 May, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Waihau Bay run for about 22% of the time.

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Also see Waihau Bay wind stats

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