The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a flood watch and high surf advisory for areas covering the Siuslaw National Forest. The Forest Service reminds all visitors to be safe if they venture out to the forest or coast this weekend.
The coastal hazard message released by NWS includes a high surf advisory for the central and north Oregon coast in effect now until 4pm Saturday. The advisory cautions that seas may reach 20 – 22 feet by this evening, with sneaker waves and beach erosion the biggest concerns. Beach visitors should use extreme caution to avoid being caught by unpredictable waves.
The flood watch is in effect from Saturday afternoon until Monday afternoon. The Oregon Coast Range mountains and foothills may receive up to 6 – 12 inches of rain during this time. This amount of rainfall means drivers may encounter water on roadways, reduced visibility, and the potential for landslides along steep slopes. Travelers should stay alert to potential hazards on forest roads.
Major flooding is possible along the Marys River, which is fed by several streams in the Coast Range. Other Coast Range rivers, including the Siletz, Alsea, and Siuslaw, may also see flooding, according to NWS forecasters.
“Visitors braving the rain to watch the storm on the coast or visit the forest should really keep an eye on conditions,” says Jerry Ingersoll, Forest Supervisor for the Siuslaw National Forest. “Unexpectedly big waves can surprise people on the beach, or they could get caught in mud on a forest road,” he continues. “I’m asking everyone to be safe out there this weekend while this storm passes through.”