8.8 foot high tide predicted Thursday
Humboldt County’s lowest-lying areas are likely to get wet next week, with a second round of “king tides” scheduled to hit the coast. Streets in King Salmon were submerged, cow pastures were flooded and shorelines on Indian Island were inundated last month when the unusually high tides — caused by solar and lunar gravitational pull at times of the year when the moon is closest to the Earth — struck.
The tides are expected to be even larger this month, reaching their peak at 8.8 feet Thursday afternoon, about three inches more than the highest tides seen in November.
National Weather Service spokesman Troy Nicolini said the good news is the tides aren’t expected to cause serious coastal flooding. “We really get into trouble when we have these astronomical tides plus a storm surge,” Nicolini said. “Right now we aren’t predicting any surges, like last week’s storm, that would cause really big flooding.” Nicolini said the conditions could always change, so residents should remember to check weather advisories again next week.
Margaret Smith, a King Salmon resident for over 45 years, said although Thursday’s 8.8 foot tide has her a little concerned, she knows she’ll be fine.
The 83-year-old said she is used to her yard looking like a swimming pool, and that it’s been happening as long as she can remember.
“I’ve been through the floods before,” she said. “We have sandbags lined up against the garage just in case, but I have never seen water come into the house. Heck, I’m not too worried. I have a boat.”
Humboldt Baykeepers Executive Director Jessica Hall said local volunteers will again be joining forces with federal, state and nonprofit agency volunteers to capture images of coastal areas across California flooded by high tides.
More than two dozen local volunteers turned out last month to document the effect king tides had on Humboldt County.
By capturing images of the high water events, volunteers and environmental agencies across the state hope to provide insight into how rising sea levels will impact coastal areas in the future.
The grassroots effort, the King Tides Initiative Program, began in the Bay Area in 2009 to help educate the public about the coastal shoreline and rising sea level.
“We were really excited about the turnout we had in November,” Hall said. “We got some amazing shots. We are hoping people will grab their cameras and come out to help us out again next week.”
Extreme high tide events that occur when the solar and lunar gravitational forces reinforce one another at times of the year when the moon is closest to the Earth.
For those worried about their property flooding due to the high tides, the National Weather Service offers free sandbag training. For more information call 443-6484.
The next round of king tides are expected Dec. 12-14.
Photos can also be uploaded directly to the California King Tides Flickr group at www.flickr.com/groups/cakingtides/.