Storm Watching During King Tides at Cannon Beach

king tides

King tides attract storm watchers to the Oregon coast

High tides, when combined with blustery winds and winter rains, make for amazing storm watching which draws many visitors to the Oregon coast. 

In simplest terms, higher-than-normal  tides or “King” tides typically occur during a new or full moon when the Earth, sun, and moon are nearly in alignment

Looking ahead, King Tides are expected on the Northern Oregon coast on December 13-15, January 11-13, and February 8-10.

While beautiful, Oregon’s coastline can be dangerous.  It’s a great idea to check tide times and follow common sense recommendations to stay safe.

How to Watch King Tides

Outdoors, in Cannon Beach,  Ecola State Park provides an exhilarating viewpoint.   Up nice and high, you can watch the drama of crashing waves. King tides are something special to behold.

If you are at sea level, it’s wise to stay back.

King tides can push waves 100 feet or more above normal watermarks and flooding can occur.

Never turn your back on the ocean and watch for deadly sneaker waves that surge further up the beach than expected.

Keep away from logs on the beach or in the surf that can be easily tossed your way.

Of course, another great way to enjoy Mother Nature’s grandeur is from a lovely oceanfront room at Tolovana Inn.

From a private balcony, you can experience a front-row view of the powerful Pacific Ocean.

Tolovana Inn in Cannon Beach has everything you need to feel at home, including spacious rooms and numerous on-site amenities. Visit to learn more about booking your stay.


Storm Watching: When Mother Nature Puts on the Show

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Winter is the perfect time of year to enjoy the natural and powerful drama of the Pacific Coast, when stormy, wet days can be followed up with soothing cool, breaks of blue sky and sunshine.

There are a couple of ways to enjoy winter storm watching in Cannon Beach.

The most comfortable is cuddled up inside an ocean front suite at the Tolovana Inn, snug near a fireplace with your favorite beverage, watching the stormy skies and thundering waves crash against the shore and nearby Haystack Rock.

Or if you prefer, bundle up and get outdoors for some real action.  Rain gear and boots are recommended.    Sure, your hair may get whipped around, and it may be hard to know which way the rain is falling, but that’s part of the excitement.

Walking along the shore to experience an upfront view of the ocean’s magnificent power is invigorating.   But, be sure to stay alert.  Just five inches of water can move a five ton log.  And sneaker waves that join up up can quickly double their height.

Depending upon where you are, avoid climbing on cliffs and jetties. Large rocks are slippery.  And, they can shift.

But drying off and warming up after a brisk  storm walk is part of the experience.  And, a bowl of clam chowder from Mo’s Restaurant, next door to Tolovana Inn, is both welcome and restorative.

The day after a storm is the best time for beach combing.  That’s when the ocean’s flotsam and jetsam are washed ashore and treasure hunting is at its best.   You can find anything from amazing shells to some random cargo that might have fallen off an ocean barge.

You can enjoy the calm—again–before the next storm.