The Bay of Fundy

The Bay of Fundy takes in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. We had already had a sense of the huge tides this bay produces at New Brunswick.  Now we are in Nova Scotia, at a place called Wolfville.  We chose this place as our research showed that we should see some good tide running here.  The BoF is very deep and wide as it hits the coast and then funnels up the huge bay.  We were in a village called Windsor which had a river flowing through and this is apparently a place to see a tidal bore. This is when the incoming tide rides up over the out going river-when both are running fast the water can stand up a meter in height and have a tsunami effect but today was an average tide here, about 7 meters and the bore was little, but with an impressive volume of fast running water behind it.


Where to watch and understand the tides here is confusing, there is not much information and sometimes the information is conflicting. We expected the tide at 12:45 but arrived at the river early.  The river was running out and we waited and waited.  Nothing-just us on the bridge watching the river!  We wondered if it was a a bit of a con and maybe the locals were having a bit of a laugh seeing us standing there.

Eagles flying above us as we waited:



Around 12:30 a very nice man called Darryl arrived. He was strimming the grassy edges by the bridge, not because he had been asked to, or because it was a contract he had but he thought it should be done to look nice!  We told him we were waiting for the tidal bore but we weren’t sure it was going to happen.  He said it would.  Soon some others arrived and around 1 pm the bore came up the river.


It was only about 15 cm’s high, but the water that came behind the bore was fast running and kept running and the tide rose very quickly. It was quite impressive.

This is the river at it’s lowest point


This is the bore coming down the river in the distance



This is how full the river got within a few minutes of the bore, it rises over the banks and grassy fields to a levee that is just out of shot.  Darryl told us how as a young boy he worked with his father who was a farmer and all they did was dictated to by the tides, cutting the hay and getting it in, always trying to beat the tides.


We asked Darryl if people ever get caught out by the tides-he said the locals know how they work and stay safe, but maybe tourists get into danger, not understanding how fast the tide runs. There are places in this region where the tide goes out so far that you can walk far out on the ocean floor.  If you walked to the waters edge when the tide is full out we think you would need to run to out pace it, at least we saw it coming in at running speed!


It was surprisingly difficult to figure out how to see a big tidal effect-seeing a bore was good.  There is a place where the bore is so big you can ride it on a raft. Another way is to go to a place at low tide and return 6 hours later to see how deep the water is.  The BoF is famous for having the biggest tides in the world, 17 meters recorded at a nearby park,  but there are few markers to help tourists like us where to go and what to see.


We only came to this region to see the tides, there’s not a lot else to see, we had a wander around the town of Wolfville which was pretty.

The wider area is beautiful, looks very much like East Anglia, where I come from-green arable crop rich land but we see that in the Waikato, so we are heading off tomorrow towards Quebec.