Kye Bay – wind and waves

Charles Bretschneider,waves,Kye Bay,storm,Georgia Strait,wave height,CFB Comox

Waves at Kye Bay – adjacent to CFB Comox

Surface ocean waves are produced by winds. The height of the waves depends upon wind speed, the length of time the wind blows (duration) and the distance over which the wind blows (fetch).

In 1952, Charles Bretschneider created a diagram that describes the relationship between these parameters and provides an easy way to predict the height of a wave produced by specific wind conditions.

Charles Bretschneider,waves,Kye Bay,storm,Georgia Strait

The y-axis describes Wind Speed; the x-axis describes Fetch Length; solid curved lines in the middle of the diagram show the Wave Height in feet – handy stuff if you want to figure out how large the waves are likely to be during a storm.

And here’s the waves that formed on Georgia Strait between Texada Island and Kye Bay, a short distance, with 60 knot winds…

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