First Storm of Season for Oregon Coast, Portland
|Nehalem during a flood event in 2006 (photo Rachel Sip)
(Oregon Coast) - It's the beginning of the spectacular
stormwatch season, but also the opportunity to watch the beaches change
abruptly in some interesting ways.
The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a high wind
warning for the north and central coast of Oregon, along with the area
east of the Cascades, as the first major storm system of the year gets
ready to pounce on Oregon. With it will come possible flooding to the
coastal region as well as some streets in the Portland area, as a big
downpour of rain is expected. For
more details see Oregon Coast weather.
The NWS said it will be a series of storms which will bring
heavy rain and winds early Tuesday, lingering throughout the day and into
Wednesday night in some places. It may even bring more snow to the Oregon
and Washington Cascades.
|After the storm look for cool stuff on the beach, like this real
Japanese float found by Danielle Emerick of Newport a few years ago
On the coast, a variety of conditions will not only mean
high winds but some possible flooding, and the likelihood of at least
a little beach erosion. Coastal residents aren’t batting an eye
at these winds, as this is just a typical storm there. In fact, many look
forward to them and enjoy checking out the beaches afterwards as the tide
will likely present some interesting finds.
“Strong winds are possible along the coast Tuesday
through early Wednesday morning, with wind gusts up to 55 mph at times
near beaches and headlands,” the NWS said. “In addition to
the wind and rain, another concern with this storm will be the potential
for minor tidal flooding in area bays and along the coast. With the full
moon coming midweek, astronomical high tides will the highest of the month
Wednesday and Thursday.”
|A sneaker wave comes tearing up the beach at Newport's Nye Beach.
The NWS said this may cause some flooding in low areas
of the coast and bays during that time, such as the southern end of Seaside,
Tillamook and the middle of Nehalem – which are often prone to such
Beaches like those just south of Cannon Beach or Gleneden
Beach on the central coast may experience some abrupt changes in the landscape
after these large tidal conditions cause some walloping.
During these conditions, it is extremely unwise to go onto
the beaches, unless you’re a good 50 yards away from the tideline.
Even then, sneaker waves will be prevalent, sometimes running up the beach
another 50 yards from where the tideline usually sits.
|Look for some abrupt changes in the look of beach areas, such as
this part of Seaside's Necanicum River (photo Tom Horning)
It will all be great storm watching conditions, however,
for those who want to play hooky from work. Some spots will be much safer
than others during these storm conditions while giving great views of
the tidal melee: spots like Seaside’s Promenade, the parking lot
above Oceanside, Cannon Beach’s Tolovana District, the higher accesses
of Lincoln City, and Newport’s Nye Beach will be safe areas from
which to view the madness.
However, for some truly mind-blowing storm sights you’ll
want to check out the more rocky places along the coast, like Depoe Bay
and Yachats. There, you’ll see all sorts of things flung onto the
rocky ledges and gargantuan waves erupt along the shoreline.
The NWS said 20 to 22-foot seas are possible, creating
the strong chance for extremely dangerous rip currents – even more
reason to stay away from small beaches where the tide could reach you.
|Short Beach, next to Oceanside, should provide some
wild stormy sights while providing safe shelter above.
Along the coast range, four to six inches of rain are expected,
which helps cause the concern for flooding downstream.
For those living in Portland, high water will gather in
“The heavy rain could cause some rivers and
streams to rise rapidly,” said the NWS. “Urban and street
flooding is also possible, especially where storm drains are blocked due
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here for video of Dec. storm aftermath
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