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Thread: Reading Tide Tables- Help please

  1. #1
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    Default Reading Tide Tables- Help please

    Hello, I am posting here given the likely expertise in this question.

    I am looking to hike out to a DNR cabin at Caines Head out of Seward. Because it includes beach hiking that must be done at low tide, they recommend to only do it at "plus 4 foot low tide or lower during the summer months". When I look at the days I am interested in, it reads for afternoon low tides: +3 and +3.2. I interpret this as being lower than the "plus 4 foot", but just wanted to confirm. I appreciate any input.

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    Supporting Member bullbuster's Avatar
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    You are correct. Keep in mind that winds can elevate tides above the predicted level.

    Also, the next low tide will be about 12 hours after the low tide in your book. If you hike in at 3 P.M., you won't be hiking out until 3 A.M.. (or thereabouts)
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    Member L. G.'s Avatar
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    You're only going to have about 1.5 hours when the tide is lower that +4.0. Is that enuff to make the hike??

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    Thanks for the info.

    i understand that winds may elevate water levels.

    We have 1-1.5 miles to hike in that window

    we are staying in a cabin for two nights, so we will do it again two afternoons/evenings later.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by hre814 View Post
    When I look at the days I am interested in, it reads for afternoon low tides: +3 and +3.2.
    Be sure to check for adjustments from the posted height and time. Sorry if I'm preaching to the choir, but if you didn't know it already, the posted #'s are for a specific tidal gauge at a specific location. Move miles away from it and both the timing and height will be different. For example, where we launch and recover our boat is pretty tide critical, but the tide is 35 minutes earlier than the posted time. And we're only about 10 miles from the gauging station.

    There should be an adjustment table somewhere in the tide book you're looking at.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BrownBear View Post
    Be sure to check for adjustments from the posted height and time. Sorry if I'm preaching to the choir, but if you didn't know it already, the posted #'s are for a specific tidal gauge at a specific location. Move miles away from it and both the timing and height will be different. For example, where we launch and recover our boat is pretty tide critical, but the tide is 35 minutes earlier than the posted time. And we're only about 10 miles from the gauging station.

    There should be an adjustment table somewhere in the tide book you're looking at.
    Had not figured that into this, thanks for the reminder.

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    It's not just the wind that can elevate the water levels, but the surf will too (no surprises there). Check the nearest navigation/weather buoy for wave height and period before you go. High surf can happen even with little or no wind, particularly if there is a big offshore storm in the GoA.

    Big rollers hitting the beach while your hiking out there can ruin your whole day....

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    you will have a good trip be at the point of water crossing about 2 HR's befor low tide an you will be in good shape have a good trip an enjoy if.

    I think you will be in great shape SID

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    I've only hiked out a little past Tonsina Creek on that trail, one of my favorite hikes btw, but have seen from my boat any number of hikers along the tide line section trying to make it, or not as the case may be. There are a couple of sections of cliff face you need to make it around once past Tonsina Creek and Sid's recommendation is a good one. Figure about an hour + to get to the tide line section from the parking lot. The only wave action you really need to be concerned with is the local chop, particularly if the wind has any easterly component to it. Mostly it will be blowing in from the south in the afternoon with the usual day breeze which won't affect that section much. We rarely get any ocean swell in that close in the bay to worry about. I'm assuming you're lining this up for the spring/summer when daylight will be plentiful, otherwise the low tide when you come out will be a couple hours later and may be dark. And don't forget to go up to Ft. McGilvray. My son's scout troop used to do an Eagle project out at Caines Head every summer and the old gun emplacements are really interesting. Bring a handheld VHF and call Millers Landing in case you have any difficulties. They run a water taxi out there and can pick you up, though it's not cheap. You ought to have cell coverage out there too so that might suffice though the VHF would be preferable IMO. Have fun, it's a great area.

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    Did they fix the second bridge?


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    I didn't get out there this last summer but seem to remember a new one the year before, a narrow, skinny one.

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