Another King Tides season has drawn to a close along the Oregon Coast, and this year’s collaborative efforts of the Oregon Coast Visitors Association and Oregon King Tides have left a successful impression of education, awareness, and citizen science around the power of these high tide events. 

The term ‘king tide’ refers to the highest winter tides that occur each year. These extreme high tides occur when the moon’s orbit comes closest to the earth, the earth’s orbit is closest to the sun, and the sun, moon and earth are in direct alignment, thereby increasing their gravitational influence on the tides.

This year, we partnered to reach a broad audience, offering education on King Tides to locals and visitors alike, focusing on key messages of safety during these events, discussions on climate change and sea level rise, and promoting citizen science through the Oregon Shores Coast Watch. Alana Keifer (@shifting_tides_nw) even joined us for an Instagram takeover to highlight her expertise on tide safety and ocean science!

Oregon King Tide Photo Contest 

To encourage engagement and grow the library of data around these events, Oregon King Tides put out an open call for photos of the season’s King Tides, which are collected and used for the continued better understanding of trends and impacts of these tides.  

These submissions play a crucial role in enhancing understanding of the trends and impacts associated with these extreme tidal phenomena. Divided into four categories: Bays and Estuaries, Coastal Erosion and Waves, Coastal Flooding, and Comparison Shots, the winning entries provided captivating glimpses into the raw power of nature.

Check out the winner of the 2023-2024 King Tide Photo Contest!

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Photographer: Jamie Baird

Location: Coos Bay, facing North

Date: 02/08/2024


Coos Bay looking north from Bastendorff Beach Park. Showing the bar area of Coos Bay including the Coast Guard tower and the north jetty and bay. Facing North.

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Photographer: Pelirrojo Productions

Location: Depoe Bay, facing East

Date: 11/15/2023

Description: Looking towards the sea wall, this shot gives a different perspective of the power put on display during a typical high tide/high surf day in Depoe Bay, OR.

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Photographer: Kerry Burg

Location: Storm surge in late December 2023, facing West

Date: 12/28/2023

Description: A striking depiction of the power of the ocean during a storm surge, highlighting the challenges faced by coastal communities.

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Photographer: Jon French

Location: Alsea Bay Interpretative Center parking lot, facing West

Date: 02/10/2024

Description: Photo on the left is typical of the twelve King Tides this 2023-2024 season in South Lincoln County, which have all been relatively mild.  Photo on the right shows the aftermath of a larger King Tide that surged onto this parking lot in 2020. Because the King Tides have been so mild this season, photo on the left is the only photo I have taken this season of an actual King Tide.

Thanks to all who participated!

These photographs not only showcase the awe-inspiring beauty of our coast, they also serve as valuable data points for scientists and researchers studying the effects of climate change.

During King Tide season, hundreds of local volunteer photographers become contributors to a statewide community science initiative. By documenting the effects of extreme tide events on our environment and infrastructure, they play a crucial role in shaping our understanding of coastal dynamics.

To learn more about King Tides, and to contribute to citizen science efforts, visit