August 2021 Bioluminescence Update

If you have not yet gotten out to view the bioluminescence in Puget Sound this year, you still have several opportunities in August. If you are new to this adventure, be sure to read tips & tricks we shared last year. We’ve found that the biggest factor is less about where¬†to kayak and more about¬†when to go.

If you’re a local paddler, here are the days and times you’re likely to be able to see bioluminescence in the Pacific Northwest in August. Note that the times listed below are based on sun and moon timing for our home base of Tacoma, Washington. Your local timing will vary – more info in the article linked above. For ease of planning, we’ve listed each night with two dates – times listed are for the night between. In several instances, you’ll notice that total darkness actually begins the morning of the second date.

If you can’t make it during one of these times, you may still be able to view bioluminescence. Your goal is to find water that is in darkness. In the absence of actual darkness, you may have some luck if you can find some shadows on a moonlit night. Or if you’re paddling with a small crescent moon, you may find that you have a good view even with the moon in the sky.

Puget Sound Bioluminescence August 2021

In our experience, the most impressive displays have been in the heat of summer. If you can paddle one of these mid-August options, that is likely to provide a good show. Note also that there are some nights in August where it might make more sense to go to bed early and wake up in the wee hours rather than trying to stay up late enough to catch darkness.

Evening of… Total Darkness
August 1/2 10:57pm – 12:47am
August 2/3 10:55pm – 1:15am
August 3/4 10:52pm – 1:51am
August 4/5 10:49pm – 2:36am
August 5/6 10:47pm – 3:30am
August 6/7 10:44pm – 3:46am
August 7/8 10:42pm – 3:48am
August 8/9* 10:39pm – 3:51am
August 9/10 10:37pm – 3:53am
August 10/11 10:34pm – 3:55am
August 11/12 10:32pm – 3:57am
August 12/13 10:40pm – 4:00am
August 13/14 11:02pm – 4:02am
August 14/15 11:26pm – 4:04am
August 15/16 11:56pm – 4:06am
August 16/17 12:34am – 4:08am
August 17/18 1:23am – 4:10am
August 18/19 2:24am – 4:12am
August 19/20 3:35am – 4:14am
August 28/29 9:49pm – 10:25pm
August 29/30 9:46pm – 11:14pm
August 30/31 9:44pm – 11:46pm
August 31/September 1 9:41pm – 12:27am

We hope you have a great time – drop a comment to let us know how it went!


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