Why Coast is Warm - While Inland Oregon Freezes

Published 01/17/2013


(Oregon Coast) – Note: while this article was published in 2013, it presents a side of Oregon coast weather science that is always relevant, and these conditions often happen at least a few times in winter.

Some striking, even bizarro world sort of weather patterns have been present throughout Oregon lately, and it looks to continue for a while. Inland areas like Portland and Eugene have been absolutely freezing this past week, while the coastline has been almost balmy. In fact, the last few days have been sun-filled and downright gorgeous on the beaches. It's been in the 40's or low 50's during the day with lots of blue sky – but not necessarily in Portland. (Above: Newport in winter)

But it's winter, you say. How can the coast be warmer than the valley?

This kind of weather situation is not uncommon during the winter, but right now it's especially noticeable.

Steve Pierce, President of the Oregon Chapter of the American Meteorological Society, said this is because cold air getting trapped in the valley and can't move into the coastal area. You can expect this to be around for a few more days.

"Many coastal areas have been warmer than the Willamette Valley in recent days due to the temperature inversion that is present in the valley,” Pierce said. “An inversion occurs when cold air is trapped near the ground by a strong ridge of high pressure above. Cold air is heavier and thus more dense, so it sinks into the valley. There is little to no wind present, which means there is nothing to mix the fog out. At the coast, there is enough wind to keep an inversion from forming. This pattern is likely to continue through the weekend and into early next week."

It's not unusual at all for it to be warmer on the coast than inland during big cold spells. This is thanks to the warming influence of the ocean. This happens just about every year in January or February – or both.

Portland meteorologist Rod Hill – currently with KGW-TV Channel 8 – said things can stay colder in the valley because of the east winds bringing colder air. On top of this, the coast range further blocks air dynamics from the east.

“Cold air settles here,” Hill said. “On the coast you don’t get that cold air vection. It’s more moderate because it’s next to the ocean, which is about 50 degrees. So on the coast it can be around 50, 52 or 53 degrees, while in the valley it’s 42 or 44.”

See here for Cannon Beach weather - Seaside weather - Manzanita weather - Oceanside weather - Lincoln City - Newport weather - Yachats weather. See here for general Oregon coast weather.






More About Oregon Coast hotels, lodging.....

More About Oregon Coast Restaurants, Dining.....

A famous little family eatery where the seafood practically gets shuffled from the sea straight into your mouth. Soups and salads include many seafood specialties, including cioppino, chowders, crab Louie and cheese breads. Fish 'n' chips come w/ various fish. Seafood sandwiches with shrimp, tuna or crab, as well as burgers. Dinners like pan fried oysters, fillets of salmon or halibut, saut�ed scallops.
Oregon Coast event or adventure you can't miss
Pacific City, Oregon

 


Breathtaking high panoramic beach views from oceanfront rooms, spacious family suites & fully equipped cottages.  Known for gracious hospitality, the sparkling clean Sea Horse features a heated indoor pool, dramatic oceanfront spa, great whale watching, free deluxe continental breakfast, conference room, free casino shuttle & HBO.  Fireplaces, private decks and spas are available in select rooms.  Close to shops, golf, fishing & restaurants.  Pets are welcome in select rooms.  Senior discounts.  Kids 18 and under stay free in their parent's room.  Very attractive rates.
Lincoln City’s only resort hotel built right on the beach with all oceanfront rooms - nestled against a rugged cliffside overlooking a soft, sandy beach. Dine in penthouse restaurant and bar, for casual meal or candlelight dinner. An array of seafood specialties, juicy steaks and other Northwest favorites, including decadent Sunday buffet. Rooms range from bedrooms to studios to 1-bedroom suites with microwaves and refrigerators to full kitchens. Also, wi-fi, spa, saunas, exercise room and year-round heated swimming pool. Kids will love the game room and easy beach access. Full-service conference/meeting rooms for that inspirational retreat; extensive wedding possibilities.

 

LATEST Related Oregon Coast Articles

Total Solar Eclipse in One Year Gives Oregon Coast Extra Time
Depoe Bay and Lincoln Beach will have the most time in darkness in the state. Science
The Crazy, Hazy Tale of a Spectacular Oregon Coast Real Estate Failure
Jump Off Joe is a wacky and twisting, turning bit of history on the Oregon coast, Newport, Nye Beach
Full Sturgeon Moon Tonight for Oregon Coast - Still Some Meteors
Meanwhile, there are still some shooting stars from the Perseids to look for
Warnings for Oregon Coast: Hot Weather Advisory, Fire Dangers
Major hot weather advisories and warnings are going up for beach towns
Seven Wild Facts About the Oregon Coast You Didn't Know
Sand that sings, beaches that glow at night, a hidden ghost town, something crazy the sunset might do - and some wild and wacky history
Take an Oregon Coast Survey - New Seafood Industry Segment Possible
Tell researchers what the Oregon coast means to you in an online survey - and there could be a new segment to the seafood industry
Two Astounding Rarities in the Depoe Bay Area of Central Oregon Coast
Things you can't see anywhere else.
Oregon Coast Health Advisories Lifted for Both Rockaway, Seal Rock
OHA sent out warnings to stay out of the ocean waters at Seal Rock yesterday and Rockaway Beach the previous day

Back to Oregon Coast

Contact Advertise on BeachConnection.net
All Content, unless otherwise attributed, copyright BeachConnection.net Unauthorized use or publication is not permitted