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Wild, Wet Weekend for Oregon Coast, South Coast Wind Watch - Gusts to 60 mph

Published 03/10/22 at 5:45 PM PST
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Wild, Wet Weekend for Oregon Coast, South Coast Wind Watch

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(Oregon Coast) – A whole lotta shakin' will be goin' on along the Oregon coast and Washington coast to some degree, as Saturday brings in some heavy winds to the region, with gusts up to 60 mph in some areas. It'll be like a winter storm out there just as spring starts to creep in. Some heavy seas will be present, especially farther south, making for some spectacular storm watching in many of the usual spots like Yachats, Coos Bay or maybe even Washington coast's Cape Disappointment. (Above: Shore Acres, courtesy  Manuela Durson - see Manuela Durson Fine Arts for more)

Meanwhile, the National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a high wind watch for the southern Oregon coast for most of Saturday, with the possibility of sustained south winds around 35 to 45 mph and gusts up to 60 mph. Those could be higher on headlands and beaches in the Curry County coastal area.

For that region around Gold Beach and southward, the strength of winds appear to be looking heavier than up north.

See Oregon Coast Weather - Washington Coast Weather

“Damaging winds could blow down trees and power lines,” the NWS office in Medford said. “Widespread power outages are possible. Travel could be difficult, especially for high profile vehicles.”

The NWS in Portland, which deals with the central Oregon coast up through southern Washington coast, said the forecast models are proving somewhat confusing for wind velocity on the central Oregon coast vs. north coast.

Some models are showing higher wind gusts to the north, as in Seaside, Cannon Beach and Manzanita. Others are tracking higher winds farther south around Newport or Lincoln City. The NWS said one or both areas could be getting gusts up to 60 mph on Saturday or even Sunday.

“All of the above leads to a high level of uncertainty regarding wind potential,” the NWS said.

Currently, the NWS is officially predicting gusts up to 30 or 40 mph on the north and central Oregon coast, but that may change closer to the event.

Rain will certainly be heavy over the weekend, resulting in about an inch of rain in some areas in just one day.

All those large winds offshore will result in some pretty heavy wave action, the NWS said.

“Seas will then begin to build on Saturday, peaking at around 15 to 17 feet as southerly wind waves increase coupled with a westerly swell,” the NWS in Portland said. “A southwesterly fresh swell then moves in behind the low pressure system to maintain seas in the mid to high teens through Sunday.”

This should translate to some sizable wave drama in rocky areas like the southern Washington coast, Cannon Beach, Manzanita, Oceanside and Depoe Bay.

On the south Oregon coast, the NWS office is also looking at fairly big waves.

“Steep to very steep and hazardous seas are likely as well, and should continue into early next week,” the NWS said. Oregon Coast Hotels for this event - South Coast Hotels - Where to eat - Maps - Virtual Tours

Later on Monday and into the week, sneaker waves may be an issue on the south Oregon coast, as the NWS said 13 to 15-foot waves are likely with a long period between swells of 16 to 18 seconds. That is a recipe for sneaker waves, as well as great action in places like Meyers Beach or Shore Acres near Coos bay.




Photo courtesy Oregon State Parks

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