The first province we visited in Canada was New Brunswick. Our campsite looked out over a salt marsh and a lake. It was lovely, but had giant mosquitoes (to be honest, we’ve been experiencing huge mosquitoes since June in Maine). We now own about six different kinds of mosquito repellent, some natural, some with Deet, some with Picardin, we’ve got it all.
The Bay of Fundy is s a 170-mile long ocean bay between the provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia that has the highest tides in the world. 100 billion tons of seawater flows in and out of the Bay of Fundy during one tide cycle – more than the daily combined flow of all the world’s freshwater rivers.
The difference between low tide and high tide is between 30-40 feet and can rise as high as 50 feet in extreme circumstances. As we drove through the area during low tide, we spotted many boats sitting on the ground by the docks. The boats are tied in a special way to allow them to rise and fall with the tides.
Our camp was right by one of the most visited tourist attractions, the Hopewell Rocks in the Bay of Fundy. One of the favorite activities for visitors to the area is to “walk the ocean floor”.
During low tide, you can walk through and around the rock formations. Then, during high tide, kayakers paddle through and around these same rock formations. It’s as if these were two different places.
We visited Hopewell Rocks during mid tide, and came back the next day to walk the ocean floor. While walking around, I realized that in about 6 hours and 13 minutes, the water would be over my head in this same spot. Such a unique experience.
As we visited various other beaches throughout the area, and walked the ocean floor some more, we saw many beautiful rocks in the tidal flats. They were every color of the rainbow, some large and some small but all rounded by the constant beating of the tides. In fact, there are a lot of “rock hounds” around here collecting the rocks.
Another area where we observed the high and low tides was the town of Alma, which we visited a number of times, driving to and from different destinations. Here we saw close up the intricacies of how boats are tied off so they can rise and fall with the tides.
Tide tables are readily available here for a number of reasons, not the least of which is safety. There are certain places where you must be clear of by certain times lest you get washed away by the extreme tide.
The tide tables drive many aspects of life in this unique area. Hector and I became very familiar with the times of low and high tides and how they changed from day to day. And we will walk the ocean floor again.