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Vota Whangaparaoa


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Whangaparaoa Swell Statistics, Ottobre: All Swell – Any Wind

This picture illustrates the range of swells directed at Whangaparaoa through a typical October. It is based on 2976 NWW3 model predictions since 2006 (values every 3 hours). The wave model does not forecast wind and surf right at the coast so we have chosen the optimum grid node based on what we know about Whangaparaoa. In the case of Whangaparaoa, the best grid node is 9 km away (6 miles).

The rose diagram illustrates the distribution of swell sizes and directions, while the graph at the bottom shows the same thing without direction information. Five colours show increasing wave sizes. The smallest swells, less than 0.5m (1.5 feet), high are coloured blue. These occurred only 62% of the time. Green and yellow show 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 frequently that size swell happens.

The diagram suggests that the most common swell direction, shown by the biggest spokes, was NNW, whereas the the most common wind blows from the W. Because the wave model grid is away from the coast, sometimes a strong offshore wind blows largest waves away from Whangaparaoa and out to sea. We group these 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 good for surfing at Whangaparaoa, you can select a similar diagram that shows only the swells that were forecast to coincide with glassy or offshore wind conditions. Over an average October, swells large enough to cause clean enough to surf waves at Whangaparaoa run for about 11% 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.

FEATURE UPDATE: we now show red swell icons for 'open sea' swells that are travelling in an unfavourable direction for the surf break. In places, these swells may still wrap around coastlines and produce smaller waves at some breaks. They are also significant for windsurfers and other water users that tend to venture further off-shore.