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Related Links

Web products: Recent Forecast Page

The Recent-Forecast page provides access to all of the products generated by CDIP's 3-day and 5-day forecast models. For complete details about the 3-day models, please refer to the 3-day forecast description page. For the 5-day models, please refer to 5-day description page.

Note that all of the forecast products use Pacific Standard Time (PST) and units of feet. User-selected timezones and units are not supported.

A Description of Forecast Model Products.

  • Offshore Wave Height Forecast Plot

    This is the plot displayed at the top of the CDIP Recent-Forecast page. These are forecasted significant wave heights from the NOAA global Wavewatch III model for the two deep water sites off California used in the coastal wave models:

    • Pt. Conception - (34N 121W, used to make coastal predictions in southern and central California).

    • San Francisco - (37N 123W, used to make coastal predictions from Monterey Bay to Pt. Arena).

    The plot is designed to provide a quick look at whether there is a big deep water wave event on the horizon that may impact the coastline. The storm threshold line of approximately 13 ft. is based on historical storms in southern California. Forecasts of offshore waves exceeding this threshold do not necessarily mean damaging coastal waves will occur (for example the waves can come from the northwest and southern California is sheltered by Pt. Conception). It is provided as a guideline for when you may want to look at more detailed plots of coastal forecasts.

  • Wave Height Maps (San Diego to Pt. Arena)

    These are similar to CDIP real-time swell maps, but include short period local seas. Regions along the coastline are clipped from the larger modeling area and rotated so that 3 forecast days can be stacked on a single plot. The wave height scale on these plots is fixed between 0 and 27+ feet. As with the Southern California swell maps, the time lag for waves to propagate from offshore waters to the coast are not accounted for in these images.

  • Coastal Wave Height Plots (Southern California Only)

    These are also similar to CDIP's real-time swell predictions of alongcoast wave height. They are a plot of the model results along the 10m depth contour. They are not breaking wave heights. Generally, the 10m depth contour is outside the surf zone (area of depth-induced wave breaking). However, when the wave height exceeds roughly 15 ft., 10m is the outer end of the surf zone and the plotted height will be larger than what would actually occur at 10m depth. Nevertheless, it does provide an idea of how much wave energy is reaching the coast relative to other locations. Higher wave energy generally leads to higher water levels and wave runup at the adjacent shore.

  • Coastal Wave + Tide Plots (Southern California Only)

    These plots combine predicted tides and forecasted wave heights in 10m depth (described above) on a site by site basis in southern California. The combined height is defined as the "Potential Flooding Index". They provide a clear view of when forecasted storm waves are going to be coincident with high tides.
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