Five and a half years of wave measurements at two stations in Monterey Bay, CA show that the local wave climate at the South (Marina station) is markedly different from that at the North (Santa Cruz Harbor station). Measured significant wave heights at the Marina station are profoundly greater than at the Santa Cruz Harbor station, especially during winter. During summer, southerly or southwesterly Pacific Ocean swells can be dominant, and therefore, the peak wave periods at the Marina station, protected from these swells by the Monterey Peninsula headland, are much shorter than at the Santa Cruz station. This disparity of wave characteristics at the two stations are the direct causes of the difference in the long-term probability of sediment suspension and transport. Sheet-flow conditions, under which significant sand transport events presumably take place, occur about 20 to 40 times more often at the Marina station than at the Santa Cruz Harbor station.
Additional publication details
Local wave climate and long-term bed shear stress characteristics in Monterey Bay, CA