Extreme Tide Range Expected This Weekend

Tides will run higher and lower than normal this weekend.

The extreme range is tied to two astronomical events: a full moon on June 23 during a time when the moon is near the earth.

The earth’s tides are created by the gravitational pull of the sun and the moon. Usually the pull is greatest when the moon is either full or in the new moon phase. On Saturday, the moon is full and also closer to the earth, in perigee.

Wet June

We had a wet spring. June has been extremely wet and we are still nine days from the last day of the month. As of Tuesday, the Vineyard received 5.98 inches of rainfall in the first 18 days of the month. Rainfall is measured at the National Weather Service cooperative station in Edgartown.

Since June arrived, the Vineyard has received measurable rainfall on 13 of those 18 days. We’ve had three June days when more than an inch of rain fell.

February remains the wettest month of the year, so far, with 6.63 inches of precipitation.

Answer to Unusually Low Weekend Tides Is Blowing in the Wind

Blame it on the moon, an asteroid that swooped close to Earth on Friday or an approaching tsunami, but unusually low tides seen across the Vineyard this weekend actually have a simpler explanation than some expected and feared.

New Moon Tides

The tides this week and through the weekend will be abnormally high and low, due to the nearing new moon phase. The moon was in perigee on Wednesday and is in the new moon phase today.