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King Tides return to San Diego beaches

There are multiple spots around San Diego County to watch King Tides on Friday through Sunday.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — King Tides are officially here and they're projected to hit the beaches of San Diego County on Friday, Dec. 2. through at least Sunday, Dec. 5. 

What are King Tides?

According to the National Ocean Service, King Tides are long-period waves that roll around the planet as the ocean is "pulled" back and forth by the gravitational pull of the moon and the sun as these bodies interact with the Earth in their monthly and yearly orbits.  

Where to see King Tides

These high tides are crashing into San Diego beaches this weekend due to the astronomical pull from the New Moon, which is officially on Friday night.

There are multiple spots around San Diego County to watch King Tides on Friday through Sunday. 

There will be high tides and low tides going into the weekend. With the high tides, it could lead to flooding along boardwalks, parking lots and low-lying areas. 

Imperial Beach tends to be a good visual spot for King Tides, however, businesses and homes around the pier will put out sand bags to prevent flooding. 

La Jolla Shores often gets water past the wall and onto the boardwalk and the Marine Room in La Jolla is usually open for a special brunch during King Tides only.

The opposite effect happens during the low tide. When the tide gets super low, you'll see a lot more rocks, reefs and all kinds of sea animals that are normally covered by water. 

On Friday around La Jolla Tide Pools had several families out their searching for sea creatures and spotted a hair slug. Some were snorkeling while others pointed in amazement. 

Peak high and low tides


7:47 a.m. 7.49' High
2:50 p.m. -1.68' Low


 8:27 a.m. 7.69' High
 3:38 p.m. -1.92' Low


 9:10 a.m. 7.65' High
 4:28 p.m. -1.89' Low

Here is a list of viewing locations for King Tides in San Diego County:

King Tides at Ponto Beach Carlsbad

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 8 a.m. - 9 a.m.

Where: Ponto Beach in Carlsbad. Meet at the parking lot on the west side of Coast Highway just North of La Costa Avenue and look for the canopy. 

What: Presented by Preserve Calavera and Batiquitos Lagoon Foundation. This is an opportunity to see the impact of a King Tide - a preview of what climate change will bring. Presenters will answer questions on climate change, sea-level rise, and habitat impacts. Bring your cameras and coffee.

King Tides Project at Rose Creek Salt Marsh and Estuary San Diego

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 7:30 a.m. - 9 a.m.

Where: Meet on the Mike Gotch Bridge of the lower Rose Creek Salt Marsh and Estuary, 2600 N. Mission Bay Drive in San Diego, to photograph the King Tides. Parking is available on North Mission Bay Drive just east of the bridge. The bridge itself is part of a Bike Path around Mission Bay Drive. Public transit runs a short distance away with San Diego Transit Bus #30 that stops at Grand Avenue and Bond Street. 

What: Presented by Friends of Rose Creek. San Diegans will walk along the Salt Marsh and Estuary to the Garnet Avenue Bridge which normally delineates the fresh water portion of the creek from the Salt Marsh and document how far upstream the tide has progressed. 

King Tide viewing and bike ride in Oceanside 

When: Sunday, Dec. 5 at 8:30 a.m. 

Where: Buccaneer Beach

What: Look for a blue Surfrider flag or banner at Buccaneer Park. After intros and a viewing of Buccaneer Beach, visitors will take a 0.8 mile bike ride to the strand on Wisconsin Street to view potential flooding. Background will be provided on how sea-level rise is already playing out in Oceanside. 

King Tide viewing at the Carlsbad "Dip" Carlsbad

When: Sunday, Dec. 5 at 8:30 a.m. 

Where: Look for a blue Surfrider flag or banner at North Ponto Parking Lot to join a short walk to "the dip" to view potential flooding and talk about managed retreat of the Southbound Hwy 101.  

WATCH RELATED: MicroClimate Forecast: Friday, December 3, 2021 (Morning)






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