FORT BRAGG, CA, 1/18/23 — California’s extreme high tides, known as King Tides, will return this Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 21 and 22. (Extreme low tides are expected Thursday, Friday and Monday). The California Coastal Commission is asking residents to (safely) photograph the high tides along our coastline, to track what future sea level rise could look like as part of the California King Tides Project.
The project is particularly salient in the wake of our recent high winds, rainfall, and wild surf in a series of atmospheric river storms. Calmer weather “means the photos you take this weekend may not look as dramatic as the previous storm waves,” the commission explained, but offers a look at water levels that will become the norm in the future.
“Imagine a storm of the magnitude we just experienced coinciding with base water levels two feet higher, or coinciding with that amount of sea level rise plus a king tide?” questioned the news release sent by the commission. “Acknowledging the hardship and damage that occurred, we can be grateful that the past month’s waves did not coincide with a king tide.”
Events this weekend all along the coast will offer opportunities for the community to connect and observe the tides. Locally, Latino Outdoors North Coast and Mendocino Land Trust will lead a nature walk at Noyo Headlands Park on Sunday at 9:30 a.m.
Those interested can find local King Tide times, learn how to upload photos, browse previous King Tide photos, and find resources for educators on the California King Tides Project website. If you’ve been stuck inside for the last month, this weekend is a great time to get outside!
Note: Kate Fishman covers the environment & natural resources for The Mendocino Voice in partnership with a Report For America. Her position is funded by the Community Foundation of Mendocino, Report for America, & our readers. You can support Fishman’s work with a tax-deductible donation here or by emailing [email protected]. Contact her at KFishman@mendovoice.com or at (707) 234-7735. The Voice maintains editorial control and independence.