The weekend of December 13th-15th is set to bring the highest waves of the year to Coastal Oregon and Washington, with some places expecting 9-10 ft. high tides and 14-20 ft. ocean swells. While incredibly beautiful to watch, extreme caution should be exercised while viewing these massive swells. Normally dry beaches and coastal paths can be swallowed in water, so best practice is to watch from a safe distance.
So just what is a “King Tide”?
According to the Oregon King Tides Photo Initiative, “In Oregon, we are using the term ‘king tides’ to refer to the highest winter tides,” according to the project website. “These highest tides occur each winter when the earth is closest to the sun in its yearly orbit, and when the sun and moon are aligned so that their gravitational forces reinforce each other to have a particularly strong effect on the Earth’s tides.”
While the massive swells and waves may be awe-inspiring to view, That Oregon Life would like to again remind everyone to use their best judgment while tide-watching. If you plan to help document the king tides, please monitor the weather forecast for any warnings about hazardous conditions.
With that being said, OregonKingTides.net is looking for your help to document this natural phenomenon along our shores. You can submit your King Tide photos in order to better understand the extent and impact high tide events have on our environment, coastlines, and the need to prepare for the effects of future climate conditions. Use the hashtag #orkingtides with your photos on social media.
If you plan to help document the king tides, we will reiterate again: please monitor the weather forecast for any warnings about hazardous conditions. Above all, be safe and have fun!