Ron Buckner (right) and Jim Fetzer struggle to make it back to the 10th Street Boat Launch during one of the lowest tides of the year. (Lizz Giordano / The Herald)

Ron Buckner (right) and Jim Fetzer struggle to make it back to the 10th Street Boat Launch during one of the lowest tides of the year. (Lizz Giordano / The Herald)

Extremely low tide surprises Everett boaters

One boat was stranded for several hours off the Port of Everett launch.

EVERETT — An usually low tide left two boats stranded for a short time midday Friday just off the Port of Everett’s 10th Street boat launch.

The tide, one of the lowest expected this year, was projected to measure minus 3.4 feet just before 1 p.m. Friday, according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Ron Buckner, 69, of Mill Creek, and Jim Fetzer, 71, of Everett, were stuck for about 30 minutes.

“We didn’t think it was going to be this low,” said Buckner after making it back to land.

The duo left earlier that morning to fish for trout. Another boat, which they say was stranded for several hours, reached the shore soon after them.

Piles of mud could be seen blocking some of the boat launches. The Port of Everett urges boaters to use extreme caution around the launch during low tide, which can bring soft, sinking sands.

Extremely low tides are expected to occur through the weekend. Heights of minus 3 feet are projected for Saturday at 1:36 p.m. and minus 2.1 feet for Sunday at 2:25 p.m.

High and low tides are measured from the average sea level, which is defined as zero. A minus tide is any tide lower than that.

The warm weather will also stick around this weekend and into next week, according to the National Weather Service in Seattle. Sunday’s high is expected to be in the lower to mid-80s. Monday through Wednesday, temperatures are forecast to peak at the mid to upper-80s near the coast. Farther east, temperatures might reach into the 90s. Cooling is predicted to begin Thursday.

Later this summer, in mid-July and mid-August, more uncommonly low tides are anticipated. The tide in July is projected to be slightly lower than Friday’s.

The gravitational pull of the moon and the sun cause tides. The tides are lower than normal due to a perigean spring tide, according to NOAA. These tides occur when there is a new or full moon when the moon is closest to Earth. Changing weather patterns and the approaching summer solstice are also contributing to the unusual low tide.

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This story was first published in the Everett Herald. Lizz Giordano: 425-374-4165; egiordano@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @lizzgior.

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