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King Tides arrive for SF New Years' Day 2014 and January blue moon

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Looking for a different New Years' activity this year? You're in luck because the SF Bay will be acting very strange. There are plenty of charts, graphs and artist renderings hinting at what SF will look like if sea-level rise occurs over the next 100 years. But experts say Mother Nature offers the most vivid preview of things to come. This year's preview starts Monday, December 30, 2013 and ends on January 31, 2014. January will have two full moons, making the second one a 'blue moon' just like the song.

King Tide occurs several times a year when the moon and sun enter into a special alignment with the Earth. Such tides last for several days and are anywhere between a few inches and several feet above normal. Although these annual tides aren’t caused by climate change, scientists, urban planners and activists say they offer a snapshot of what rising sea levels could do. King tides can be up to 2 feet above normal high tides, and stop traffic in places like Sausalito.

California, king tides are scheduled to occur in the 2013-2014 winter over the following dates. Beaches in Los Angeles and San Diego are also going to have a wild time.

  • December 30th-31st
  • January 1st-2nd
  • January 29th-31st

San Francisco areas predicted to be affected include: Ocean Beach; Stinson Beach; Pacifica: Beach Blvd. Sea Wall near the municipal pier; Laguna Salada; Treasure Island

South Bay: Redwood Creek and proposed Redwood City dev. site, Dumbarton Bridge. Santa Cruz, Half Moon Bay.

Marin: Sausalito, Corte Madera, Richardson Bay, Gallinas Creek (north of China Camp).

Get details for your location here. It's also a great time for clamming at the low tide.

The California King Tides Initiative encourages members of the public to document the highest seasonal tides (or king tides) that occur along the state’s coast. These photographs help visualize the impact of rising waters on the California coast. Make a day of it and put your photos up online. Photos can be uploaded directly to the California King Tides Flickr group at



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