Big Near-Spring Storm on Oregon Coast: Gusts 75, Waves 25
Published 03/08/2016 at 4:51 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff
(Oregon Coast) – Chicken Little would be at least partially vindicated. Although the sky isn't so much falling as it is tempestuous, or at least will be. The Oregon coast will be under a high wind warning from 1 p.m. Wednesday through 2 a.m. that morning, and some big, gnarly waves will be battering the beaches.
The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland issued the wind warning, saying beaches and headlands will get winds out of the south at 35 to 45 mph and gusts up to a whopping 75 mph. Coastal towns will receive sustained winds in the 30's with gusts up to 65 mph.
Waves will be wild and dramatic at around 18 feet tomorrow, and remaining rather high for the next two days. Combined seas will reach a hefty 24 feet high later at night on Wednesday. Thursday appears to show predictions of 25 feet and then lowering a bit to 20 feet or so that night. Friday will still be fairly high with 14-foot waves.
The NWS said these kinds of peak wind periods can cause tree damage and power disruptions. Travel could be problematic for larger, high profile vehicles such as trucks and trailers.
At the heart of all this is a low pressure system bringing in a warm front through southwest Oregon early Wednesday morning, the NWS said. From there, the system moves inland and northward by late afternoon.
“Expect very strong winds to develop along the coast and over the Oregon coast range and southwest Washington Willapa Hills late afternoon and continue through the night,” the NWS said. “The cold front will become more north-to-south oriented Wednesday evening and finally moves inland overnight. Heavy rain will accompany the front, especially over the coastal areas.”
The NWS noted that there will be a lull on Thursday, and then several more systems rotate across the area Friday through the early week, making a wet weekend for everyone, including those in Portland, Salem, Eugene, etc.
While there are no official warnings regarding waves, with wave height predictions like this it is highly advisable to stay off the narrower beaches, like those at Newport's Nye Beach, much of Waldport, Cannon Beach, most of Lincoln City and Gleneden Beach (and more). Broader beaches like Agate Beach, Seaside and the larger beaches of Lincoln City will be safe. Where to stay for this event - Where to eat - Map and Virtual Tour
The best stormwatching can be had from the parking lots or walkways that overlook rocky areas, like Depoe Bay, Yachats or Oceanside. More Oregon Coast Weather.
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