Beachgoers rock-hopped along the tide pools at Arroyo Burro Beach Park in Santa Barbara on Friday afternoon as the very low tide exposed more marine life than usual.
The new year brought so-called “king tides” to the Central Coast, with high tides near 6 feet from Tuesday through Friday. The low tides, in the late afternoon, reached -1.3 feet on Friday, which showed off more of the coastline and intertidal areas.
At Arroyo Burro Beach, also called Hendry’s Beach, the usual crowd of dog walkers and beach strollers explored the tide pools as the tide went out. The rocks are covered in sea anemones, and many of the shallow pools are home to rock crabs, kelp crabs, hermit crabs and shrimp, among other creatures.
Santa Barbara’s coast gets multiple high and low tides a day, and there are more opportunities for extraordinary wave action over the weekend.
Saturday’s high tides are expected to be 4.26 feet at midnight and 5.57 feet at 11:11 a.m., with low tides of 1.71 feet at 5:06 a.m. and the lowest tide of -0.82 feet at 6:04 p.m., according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Sunday’s highest tides will be 4.39 feet at 12:50 a.m. and 4.83 feet at 12:07 p.m. There will be a low tide of 1.76 feet at 6:13 a.m. and the lowest at 6:51 p.m., at -0.25 feet.
The very high winter tides are expected again at the end of the month, on Jan. 29, 30 and 31, according to the California King Tides organization. The group encourages people to photograph the highest tides to help visualize higher sea levels along California’s coastline, and those images can be seen on its Flickr account by clicking here.