When is low tide

ebb and flow

Constant change through the tides

Who doesn’t know that: no sooner has the holiday started than the water is gone. The consolation: it will be back in a few hours, guaranteed.

The tides and tides are particularly pronounced in the North Sea and determine life in and around the Wadden Sea. The water in the North Sea rises and sinks twice a day, revealing exciting insights into a unique natural landscape.

High tide and low tide

Flood is the period in which the water rises. If it reaches its highest level, the flood has been reached. In the following six hours the water level (ebb) falls until it has reached the lowest level, the low water. The tidal range, i.e. the difference in height between low water and high water, is two to five meters in the North Sea, depending on the location.

Cause: Forces of the moon

The tides are created by the action of the gravitational forces of the moon and the sun on the earth. These forces depend on the distance between the moon and earth. On the side facing the moon, greater forces act and the water is drawn towards the moon. This creates a flood mountain there. On the side facing away from the moon, the earth is pulled away from the water and a second flood mountain is created.
Put simply, the earth then rotates under these flood mountains during its daily rotation. Therefore, there would be high and low tide twice a day. However, since the moon has also continued to turn within the 24 hours, it takes 24 hours and approx. 50 minutes from one flood to the next but one. This also explains the daily 50-minute tide shift

Spring tide and nip tide

Both forces work together on full and new moon and there are particularly high spring tides or particularly low nipp tides at half moon. In combination with the corresponding wind directions, this can lead to the notorious storm surges in the North Sea.