Characterizing the nearshore wave resource at a regional scale poses a great challenge because high-quality wave data are required. This paper presents a detailed analysis of nearshore wave climate and resource characterization on the U.S. West Coast based on a 32-year, regional wave hindcast. Resource characterization closely followed the International Electrotechnical Commission standards. The wave hindcast data were generated from an unstructured-grid SWAN model with approximately 300 m grid resolution in the nearshore region. Statistics of six IEC wave resource parameters at the 50 m water depth were calculated for four sub-regions along the coast, including Washington, Oregon, and Northern and Southern California. Results indicate that the Washington and Oregon coast has a similar nearshore wave resource. The wave resource in Southern California is significantly less than that of the Washington and Oregon coast. Alongshore and cross-shore variabilities of wave power were assessed. Temporal variability, at seasonal, inter-annual, and decadal scales were analyzed. Overall, strong seasonal variation is observed; high wave energy occurs in the winter months and calm seas in the summer. Finally, extreme environmental conditions, i.e., the 100-year extreme environmental contours, for different locations along the West Coast were investigated.