Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?  (Read 734 times)

mshea

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 168
Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« on: September 28, 2018, 12:17:19 pm »

Hi All,

I've traveled the Pacific NW coast for years and, because of work, it's been limited to July and early August. I've come home with lots of great fog shots, but not much luck with sunsets, due to that cloud bank that sits a few miles off shore. My travel options have recently widened. What are the best months for the latter?

Thanks,
Merrill
Logged

Byron Will

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 23
    • Fine Art Landscape and Nature Photography by Byron John Will
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2018, 12:57:16 pm »

Well, this used to be an easier question to answer. I've lived here in the NW 45 years, and September and October were generally good times for photography, weather wise. It seems things have changed these last years, with more unsettled, cloudy weather during these months.

Summer can be the worst time to visit here for photography on the coast, due to very warm temperatures inland creating a thermal wind (usually a NW wind) that creates upwelling of cold water. The ocean is often colder at the surface in the summer than in winter. There is, generally, less fog than there used to be. Recently we have had more smoke in the summer.

I prefer unsettled weather for photography, and if you do too, late March, April and May can be great for storms and clearing storms, and stretches of clear weather as well. It's always a gamble. There is still snow in the Olympics and on Vancouver Island mountains as well. Mid-October can be good, but recently it seems to be more gray and drizzle.

If you are interested in knowing more, I recommend The Weather of the Pacific Northwest, by Cliff Mass, head of the Meteorology at the University of Washington. His blog is also a great resource. He can be controversial, but always interesting.
Logged

mshea

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 168
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2018, 03:18:21 pm »

Thanks, Byron. I thought those might be the better months. But, climate change... sigh.

And I'll check out that blog. BTW, I've wondered where the moniker for the fog, "Karl", ever came from.

Merrill
Logged

thill1111

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 24
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2018, 10:27:13 pm »

BTW, I've wondered where the moniker for the fog, "Karl", ever came from.

https://www.kqed.org/news/11682057/how-the-bay-areas-fog-came-to-be-named-karl

I thought it might have been for Carl Sandburg...
Logged

Byron Will

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 23
    • Fine Art Landscape and Nature Photography by Byron John Will
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2018, 11:53:02 pm »

Interesting. As far as I know, we don't have any particular fog personification here. As in San Francisco, you can go from 100 degree heat in Portland to 63 degrees of fog and wind in a two hour drive. I was photographing near Oswald West SP on Friday. It was warm and pleasant, and then the fog moved in from the SW. In 10 minutes it was 10 degrees cooler, with a strong wind (see attachment).
Logged

BAB

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 348
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2018, 03:59:52 pm »

second half of nov and dec yield great sunsets also jan-mar sunrises are difficult to predict due to fog and lack of clouds
Logged
I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kic

Mark Greenberg

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 16
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2018, 02:35:39 pm »

I'll be visiting Portland the 4th week of November.  Any specific coastal areas you could suggest?  Thanks

Mark
Logged

mshea

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 168
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2018, 06:03:58 pm »

Cape Arago State Park, out of Coos Bay, has loads of possibilities, especially at low tide. But that may be too far afield from Portland for you.

Merrill
Logged

John Nollendorfs

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 522
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2018, 07:27:01 pm »

That time of year sees lots of overcast conditions usually. Might consider driving up the gorge instead and check out central Oregon around Bend.

Sent from my XT1575 using Tapatalk

Logged

Byron Will

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 23
    • Fine Art Landscape and Nature Photography by Byron John Will
Re: Best months for Pacific Northwest coastal sunsets?
« Reply #9 on: October 17, 2018, 01:46:38 am »

Often the last week of November can be quite a mess here. We have had snow here in Portland then, but the storms can create quite a bit of interest at the coast. It's a 1.75 hour drive to Ecola State Park north of Cannon Beach. Low tide at Hug Point, just south of Cannon Beach can be great if there is enough water in the falls there, which there probably will be then. Even if we just have rain here, it can snow in the coast range, so it's something to check.

The gorge and eastern gorge is always an option. Check the weather in The Dalles if it's raining in Portland. Often you can have showers and grand clouds there. It probably will be on the chilly side. Columbia Hills SP and Horsethief Butte are two of my favorite places in Washington.
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up