DANA POINT— Brace yourselves for a tidal wave of excitement as the Ocean Institute rolls out their popular marine adventure, King Tide Tide Pool Hikes.
A king tide is an exceptionally high tide that occurs when the moon’s and the sun’s gravitational forces align during specific phases of the lunar cycle. While tides regularly rise and fall due to the gravitational pull of the moon and the sun, king tides are associated with the closest approach of the moon to the Earth and the alignment of the sun, Earth and moon.
This exclusive experience coincides with the celestial spectacle that brings us Perigean Spring Tides. The upcoming king tides promise extreme highs and lows, creating a tidal symphony reaching 1-3 feet higher than average.
These extreme high tides can lead to temporary flooding in low-lying coastal areas, especially when they coincide with storms or heavy rainfall. Additionally, king tides can offer a glimpse into future sea-level rise scenarios, as they provide a preview of higher water levels that may become more common with climate change.
A Celestial Dance Unveiled:
Spring Tides: Spring tides are a type of tide that occurs during the new moon and the full moon phases of the lunar cycle. Spring tides occur when the sun, Earth and moon are aligned, forming a straight line. This alignment happens during the new moon and full moon phases, a configuration known as syzygy. During these phases, the gravitational forces of both the moon and the sun combine to create higher-than-average tidal bulges on Earth. This results in more significant variations between high and low tides.
Perigee: Perigee refers to the point in the orbit of an object, such as a moon or satellite, where it is closest to the celestial body it is orbiting. Approximately every 28 days, the moon cozies up to Earth, intensifying gravitational forces and giving us extreme highs and lows.
This rare convergence of celestial events, known as king tides, opens a window of opportunity for tide pool enthusiasts.
Conversely, the opposite point in the moon’s orbit, where it is farthest from Earth, is called apogee. Together, perigee and apogee describe the two extreme points in the moon’s orbit.