How to calculate high tide times

Updated February 21, 2017

If you're planning any activities near the coast, it is essential that you know at what times the high tides are coming. Losing track of an encroaching tide is extremely dangerous and could leave you cut off from the shore. If your boat is moored in coastal waters, you must be prepared to loosen your ropes as the tide rises and falls. There are several websites that provide tide times for US and international coastal waters, making it easy to calculate high tide times and plan your activities.

Go to the Saltwater Tides site (see Resources.) Click a region from the list and then a location within the region on the next page. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and select a month, year, start time and number of tides required. Click "Get Tides" -- a list appears with high and low tide times. Make a note of the times on your chosen dates marked "High." Sun and moon information is also included on the page.

Visit the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration's Water Level Observation Network website (see Resources.) Click on the map the state for which you need tide times or select it from the drop-down menu lower down the page. Click tidal station from the map on the next page or select one from the drop-down menu. A graph appears showing the predicted water level (blue) and the observed water level (red). The time and date is marked along the bottom. Wind, air pressure and water temperature charts appear below.

Use the site (see Resources) for your high tide times. Type a U.S. or international location into the "Address" box at the top of the page or drag the map below to your location. Blue beach umbrella icons appear on the map where tide information is available; click the icon to see high and low tide times as well as sunset and sunrise information.

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