Weather, Tides, Beach Cams, and What-to-Wear Tips

What to wear when you visit Oregon beaches
For starters, the Pacific Ocean is not warm! You should probably not expect to go to a Pacific Ocean beach in the summertime wearing a swimsuit and flip-flops. The water is cold year-around. It "warms up" to an extent by late July or early August, but it ain't a "swim beach".
During the cooler months, you usually have the shrieking Pacific winds making it feel colder than it actually is.
These tips are intended for those who have not lived in Oregon their whole lives. You will likely see the locals out there in shorts and maybe even a short-sleeved shirt. But the rest of us will need some layers.


TIPS

As always layers work better than a light shirt and a single heavy coat or jacket. And the outer layer probably ought to be some sort of windbreaker, even if it's light.

Don't get duped by the "parking lot heat". Parking lots are almost always warmer than the nearby beach. Also they may be shielded from the chronic Pacific winds. Consider adding an extra layer, even if it feels warm by your car.

High pressure in the winter can mean sunny beaches and cloudy/foggy inland. So check the coast weather for possibly clear days even if it's cloudy inland. (It'll still be cold and likely windy)

High pressure in the summer means clear for both inland and the coast.

High pressure at any time means more Oregonians on the coast!

"Regular" Oregon weather in the cooler months is cloudy/rainy inland and cloudier/more rain on the coast.

But Oregon summers are almost always clear from late May/early June to late September.

Being chilled or not chilled is highly dependent on the cloud cover and/or the wind. These are hard for forecasters to get exactly right. Expect surprises either way.


Useful weather, tide, and beach cam links

NOAA Portland Weather office

Portland NOAA office (covers Northern beaches)


NOAA Medford Weather office

Medford NOAA office (covers Southern beaches)


Pacific Ocean Satellite

Satellite Images


NOTE: The Satellite page listed in the above link will help you decide if there are really going to be clouds or not.
To use the page:
Select "West Coast" on the page.
On the West Coast page:
Single image: Under the "GOES Imagery" table, click "Visible", "Shortwave" (infrared), or "Water Vapor" under "Single Image"
Image sequence: Under the "GOES Imagery" table, click "Visible", "Shortwave" (infrared), or "Water Vapor" under "Image Loops"
NOTE: Select "Flash", since "Java" usually does not work.

Coast CAMS

Pacific Northwest coast cams.


Tide Tables

Oregon coast tide tables


To use the tide table page:
Select one of the tide sites. Southern beaches are listed first.
Scroll down and select the month, "First day for tides", and "How many days of tides"

Cool Weather GEEK site

An incredibly rich real-time display of winds, clouds, and much other info, based on NOAA's GFS model.