Avon Pier Swell Statistics, Spring: All Swell – Any Wind
This image describes the variation of swells directed at Avon Pier through a typical northern hemisphere spring and is based upon 6580 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 optimum grid node based on what we know about Avon Pier, and at Avon Pier the best grid node is 39 km away (24 miles).
The rose diagram illustrates the distribution of swell directions and swell sizes, 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 occurred only 50% of the time. Green and yellow show increasing swell sizes and highest swells greater than >3m (>10ft) are shown in red. 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 SSE, whereas the the dominant wind blows from the WSW. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Avon Pier and out to sea. We combine these with the no surf category of the bar chart. To avoid confusion we don't show these in the rose graph. Because wind determines whether or not waves are clean enough to surf at Avon Pier, you can view an alternative image that shows only the swells that were predicted to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average northern hemisphere spring, swells large enough to cause surfable waves at Avon Pier run for about 50% 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.