Stay Eat Events Weather Beaches

Craziest, Lowest Minus Tides Coming to Oregon Coast: When, What to Find

Published 05/19/21 at 3:25 AM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Craziest, Lowest Minus Tides Coming to Oregon Coast: When, What to Find

(Oregon Coast) - The lowest of the low are coming to the Oregon coast: the biggest minus tides of the year show up in late May, June and July. Beaches will be wildly elongated, major tidepool areas will open up that you've never seen, some ghost forests will appear, and some otherwise forbidden spots could abruptly be accessible – but briefly and in a dangerous way. (Above: dry sand around the road at Hug Point)

Minus tides hit the entire Oregon and Washington coastline in the five, six days on either side of May 26, June 25 and July 23.

Latest Coastal Lodging News Alerts
In Seaside:
Includes exclusive listings; major specials now that winter is here
In Cannon Beach:
Includes rentals not listed anywhere else
In Manzanita, Wheeler, Rockaway Beach:
major specials for winter
In Pacific City, Oceanside:
Winter's enticing specials now
In Lincoln City:
Major winter specials now
In Depoe Bay, Gleneden Beach:
major specials this season
In Newport:
Look for many specials
In Waldport
New amenities offered; specials and tempting prices now
In Yachats, Florence
Big deals available; lodgings not listed anywhere else
Southern Oregon Coast Hotels / Lodgings
Reedsport to Brookings, places to stay; winter deals

All the really low tides arrive in the early morning hours, between 5:30 a.m. and 8 a.m., with most around 6 a.m. or so. Some later in summer get close to 11 a.m.

The greatest minus tides this month are May 26, 27, 28 and 29, with some decent low minus tides on the day or two before and after these dates. Many NOAA tidal predictions have them at -2.5 feet on those four days, depending on the area, which is enormous.

In June, the greatest minus tides will be on the 25th, 26th and 27th. A decently-low group of them happen June 22 through 24, and then again on June 28 and 29.

Some smaller minus tides happen around June 11 and 12.

July 22 they start again, reaching as low as -2 feet in many Oregon coast spots on the 23rd through 26th.

For detailed tide predictions see the weather page links at the Oregon Coast Weather page.

Tide predictions are always listed according to a slightly inland body, mostly bays. So there is some offset of height in feet – what happens on the beach will be measured differently. However, minus tides mean low, low tides generally no matter what, and that minus foot or two can bring a world of difference. However, all that can be dependent on the terrain of a certain area, such as how a spot is sloped at the tideline. The more gradual the rise of a beach – such as at Manzanita, Bandon or Seaside – the greater the minus tide spectacle.

Manzanita can expand by a few hundred feet under these conditions. Seaside can seem endless on such days.

Safety First: Tide prediction times are an estimate and can be off by an hour. This doesn't mean relax and don't stop watching the ocean. It's a time to keep a much closer eye on the sea, especially if you're lurking around new and opened up tidepool areas.

However tempting, stay absolutely clear of areas close to the ocean that you've never seen wide open before. These spots are the most dangerous.

Treasures You May Find

Arch Cape's remaining arch is a good possibility to open up, and you could well have decent access for awhile.

Cannon Beach's Haystack Rock may have more sides visible. At Hug Point, you could get to see the old road carved out of the rock from below and actually be able to walk around the outside of it.

Oceanside's tunnel may not be necessary. Luckily, this one's a decently safe option, because even if you walk around the point and the water closes you off, there is still the tunnel that lets you get back.

Lincoln City could well be showing odd, brightly-colored rocks at the newly-opened stretches of sand: these are agate veins.

Sunset Bay ghost stump: photo courtesy Brent Lerwill

At Coos Bay's Sunset Bay, look for the ancient ghost forest stumps. These are thousands of years old.

There's a newly-discovered set of ghost forest stumps from three hundred years ago at Happy Camp that may be visible again.

Yachats will get much calmer with fewer big waves hitting those rocks, and some of those holes will reveal new sights. Be extremely careful here, however: again, don't go near those edges close to the waves.

The Devil's Churn at Cape Perpetua may be somewhat emptied out.

Places like Bandon or Meyers Creek Beach on the south coast may be vastly opened up and you can walk among those rocky giants. MORE PHOTOS BELOW:

Oregon Coast Hotels for this event - South Coast Hotels - Where to eat - Maps - Virtual Tours


Oceanside at a low tide-like event

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

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

Coastal Spotlight

LATEST Related Oregon Coast Articles

Great Coastal Gale of '07 Tore Into Oregon Coast 15 Years Ago - Video
The storm changed parts of the region forever. History, Bandon, Coos Bay, Newport, Lincoln City, Manzanita, Cannon Beach, Seaside, Astoria
How Storms - Even Solar Storms - May Affect Whales on Oregon / Washington Coast
Why do they disappear? Does it disturb them at all? Marine sciences
Attending Seaside Aquarium This Month Helps Feed the Hungry on Oregon Coast -...
Patrons pay admission to the aquarium with two cans of food per person. Seaside events
Warm Sunsets to Raucous Oregon Coast Storms: Upclose at Cannon Beach's Schoon...
One of the major highlights is that beachfront lawn. Cannon Beach hotels, lodging reviews
Washington Coast Holidays Include Crab Pot Tree, Santa with Pirates, Music, Food
Holiday happs from Ilwaco up through Westport. Washington coast events
Famed Holiday Show Tradition Back on Oregon Coast, at Newport Performing Arts...
The Christmas Show! is finally back, Dec. 16 and 17. Newport events
Cyber Monday for Oregon Coast Too: Giving the Beach for Christmas
Give a night or two at the coast, or books, hoodies, T's. weather
Orcas Spotted Again on N. Oregon Coast - First Time This Pod Recorded Here
A pod of four were photographed on November 23. Marine sciences

Back to Oregon Coast

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