West Seattle scene: Puget Sound spillover on Alki

November 20, 2012 at 11:41 am | In Seen at sea, West Seattle news, West Seattle weather | 13 Comments

Thanks to Jenn Padilla for sharing that photo from the Alki boardwalk, where high water from our record rainfall has augmented what was already one of the month’s highest tides, 12 feet, peaking about an hour ago. Jenn texted us the photo (206-293-6302 any time), saying she’d never “seen the Sound so full that it spilled over.” (The peak high tide was 12.6 feet last Saturday.) P.S. From just around the point to the south, here’s high-tide coverage on Beach Drive Blog.


  1. Lincoln was the highest I have seen it this morning too. Boaters, be careful! Tons of woody debris in the water

    Comment by lina — 12:01 pm November 20, 2012 #

  2. The National Weather Service issued an advisory about this: http://forecast.weather.gov/showsigwx.php?warnzone=WAZ508&warncounty=WAC033&firewxzone=WAZ654&local_place1=&product1=Coastal+Flood+Advisory

    They say the weather has added 1.6 feet to our 12.0 tide.

    Comment by Lura Ercolano — 12:03 pm November 20, 2012 #

  3. This is a picture we’ll see repeated many times over the next few decades and beyond.

    Comment by Alex — 12:31 pm November 20, 2012 #

  4. Thanks, Lura.

    Comment by WSB — 12:43 pm November 20, 2012 #

  5. heavy rains do not make Puget Sound overflow, right? It’s not a bathtub. It’s connected to all the oceans of the world. Water seeks its own level.

    Comment by I. Ponder — 1:26 pm November 20, 2012 #

  6. Actually, heavy local rains DO raise the water level. Not just the rain that falls on the sound, but all the rivers that drain into the sound. Sure the Sound is connected to the oceans of the world, but it takes a while for the excess local water to flow out of the sound, just like it takes a while for heavy rains to flow down a river.
    Low pressure also raises the tides – less heavy air pushing it down. But I don’t think today was particularly low pressure. Just the after effect from yesterday’s region-wide heav rains.

    Comment by Lura Ercolano — 1:51 pm November 20, 2012 #

  7. Having spent most of my life in WS, this is a scene I’ve seen many times before. Uncommon, but not unusual.

    Comment by G — 3:00 pm November 20, 2012 #

  8. It’s awesome to appreciate even the not-that-unusual :) and I am so glad that Jenn took the time to send a photo. We went around Alki this morning but too early to check out the tide. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 3:48 pm November 20, 2012 #

  9. Wow. Seems we were fortunate this high tide was not coupled with another high wind event. Imagine if that volume of water was being blown over the seawall!

    Comment by Chuck and Sally's Van Man — 4:13 pm November 20, 2012 #

  10. Wow! I’ve lived here most of my 37 years and while I’ve seen water splashing over the wall, I’ve never seen the tide so high that it was overflowing onto the sidewalk like this.

    Comment by CJ — 4:15 pm November 20, 2012 #

  11. Ditto what CJ says but I’m fifty-one.

    Comment by sydney — 6:30 pm November 20, 2012 #

  12. Highest I’ve seen in 34 years at Alki.

    Comment by will o wisp — 7:48 am November 21, 2012 #

  13. Good picture and explanations.
    Thanks WSB. I am stuck in China and love being connected to home thru this blog. Keep up the interesting local news.

    Comment by West Seattle Curmudgeon — 8:28 pm November 21, 2012 #

Sorry, comment time is over.

All contents copyright 2005-2015, A Drink of Water and a Story Interactive. Here's how to contact us.
Entries and comments feeds. ^Top^