Seven-foot tides will start hitting shores Saturday, and continue through the weekend, as the King Tides will roar in the new year and perhaps bring a little flooding with them.
Did we not just have the “astronomical high tides” of the famed King Tides less than a month ago? We did. But thanks to the moon and sun being particularly close to the earth right now, i.e. the recent winter solstice, the Chronicle reports we are in for another batch of King Tides this weekend — as often happens in January.
The new year will usher in a return of the King Tides to the #BayArea The astronomically driven event will make for higher high tides (morning) and lower low tides (afternoon). Localized flooding will be possible for low lying areas.#CAwx #kingTides pic.twitter.com/LBCV3YJDZV— NWS Bay Area (@NWSBayArea) December 30, 2021
The National Weather Service provides the above very handy schedule for tide-watching. On New Year’ Day, Saturday, January 1, the ride will splash its hardest and highest at 9:21 a.m. Things will get even sploshier on Sunday at 10:11 a.m, and then again Monday at 11:02 a.m.
Embarcadero high tide, 6.7’— Burrito Justice (@burritojustice) December 2, 2021
King Tide is Saturday, 7.1’, ~5 inches higher than today pic.twitter.com/5pYkSTuTeG
All California coastal areas will be affected, and we do know that watching these tides crash ashore at the Embarcadero can be a fun visual delight. But as the weather service warns, “Localized flooding will be possible for low lying areas,” and there is likely to be minor flooding at underpasses and coastal sidewalks.
Regrettably, there is no guided “tide tour” offered in San Francisco this weekend. But over in Oakland, the California King Tides Project will be offering a tour on Sunday in Fruitvale (10 .am.-Noon, Fruitvale Bridge). “Join an invigorating tour of the history and science of the Oakland Estuary, with local historian Dennis Evanosky,” the free event invite says. “Learn how sea level rise will impact our city and coastal community. Bring your camera to document the tides. RSVP required by Dec. 31st to [email protected].”
King Tide! Flooded bike path at the edge of Richardson Bay, Mill Valley, California pic.twitter.com/iBV0A9VRdH— Katherine Baylor (@KJBaylor) December 3, 2021
Again, the King Tides are not caused by climate change, they’re a normal annual phenomenon caused by the gravitational pull of the sun and the moon. But they give us insights to what climate change will cause as sea levels rise, and how the ocean will be an even more powerful element than it is now.
Image: @burritojustice via Twitter