Saint John, Day 2

It’s weird how we keep getting up at the same time every day without an alarm, but we do. We had breakfast and Bob took Auggie for his walk up to the lookout. Today it was much clearer and you could get a much better view.

We left the campsite about 10 AM. We were told to get to the Reversing Falls about 1/12 hours before high tide at 12:17 to see the best action.

The highways make it very difficult to get around because they don’t have on and off ramps at every exit, so although there is an exit that you want, you may not be able to get off there and go the direction that you want. Thank goodness for GPS. John, the campground host, gave us great directions to Reversing Falls, so we were there in no time at all. Arriving at 10:30, the tide had already started to come in, so the action had started. We got there at the perfect time. We watched as the water swirled and rushed over the 430 ft. chasm creating whirlpools and rapids under the bridge. 

Twice daily, millions of gallons of water flowing inward from the Bay of Fundy and outward from the St. John River swirl and clash as they battle in the Reversing Falls. Several natural features come together to form the Falls–the narrowing of the St. John River, the shape of the gorge, and an underwater ledge are all part of the creation. The most important element is the head of collision of the Bay of Fundy and the St. John River. The Bay of Fundy has the highest tides in the world. One hundred billion tons of water cascade through the mouth of the Bay from the Atlantic Ocean every 12 hours. The St. John River begins in northern Maine and flows south to the Bay of Fundy–a distance of 450 miles. On average, 10 million gallons of water per minute pour through a 330 ft. openig stretching from one side of the river to the other. It tumbles through at up to 25-30 knots. At high tide, the water from the Bay becomes higher than the river level and slowly at first, the river begins to flow upstream. As the bay tides continue to rise, the reverse flow gradually increases and the rapids begin to form reaching their peak at high tide. At this point, the tidal waters of the bay are actually 14 feet higher than the river. As the cycle continues, the Bay begins to drop. It is an amazing phenomenon! The longer we stood there the more turbulent the water became. Birds were hanging around looking for some opportunity to snag a fish and we even saw a seal swimming nearby.

We moved to the upper observation deck to get a better view.

I left Bob there while I walked across the bridge to get a different view from the other side.

After walking back, Bob and I both took the descending walk down to the water to get a different view of the bridge and the rushing water below it. We hung around there for awhile to figure out what time we should return to see the exposed rocks at low tide. Before we left, we went back to see how much the water had risen and changed the dynamics of the falls. 

From our vantage point on the observation deck, we could see people doing the zipline across the river. Bob and I both said that we could never do that over the water!

Passing the harbor, there were two cruise ships in port. One was a Disney cruise ship and the other was a Carnival ship.

We decided to drive through the downtown area on Water St. to get a look at things in Uptown St. John.

We saw the double-decker pink tour buses traveling down the street.

We would have stopped to look around more, but the cruise ships were in port and there were hundreds of people milling about. 

We left there and decided to find the Atlantic Superstore to pick up a few groceries. It was so close to the campground and easy to see from where we were camped……but not so easy to get to. After a little bit of manuevering, we found it and did our shopping. Beef is very expensive, but fish, lamb, and pork were not. It’s always interesting to compare prices in different locations. Milk was $6.60 a gallon. That’s insane!

We noticed this sign in the parking lot. There were two parking spots for expectant mothers close to the doors. That’s different.

We stopped for gas before heading back. It was $1.22 per liter. Do the math…. $4.64 a gallon. That’s $1 more that it was in Maine. Yikes! We plugged our campground address into the GPS and were back at our site for lunch and to drop off the groceries. We wanted to take the scenic circle drive through Rockwood Park and see what else is in the park besides 7 other lakes. Our campground is the pink section on the lower, center part of the map. There is also a zoo, hiking trails, dog park, and swimming at two locations.

We took Auggie with us for the ride. He couldn’t wait to go.

The weather today was nothing like they predicted it to be. They said it would be raining this morning early and then mostly cloudy. We had sunny blue skies with some clouds, but the temp was perfect at 77 degrees. There was no rain. We hung out at the campsite until about 4:00 when we took a drive back to Reversing Falls to see the difference at low tide….and what a difference there was! It was truly remarkable. Compare the first pictures with these and you will see. The pictures don’t really do it justice.

While we were there, one of the boat tours was out doing their thing. The tour took people through the falls for a thrilling ride.

I walked across the road again and stood on the bridge to view the other side. The water was much more turbulent running through the gap.

We returned to our camp and had cocktails while we discussed our future plans on the trip. We will probably be in Canada for two weeks by the time we get done touring around here. Auggie enjoyed being outside with us and when we came in to prepare dinner, he took the time for a snooze.

Bob cooked fresh haddock on the grill tonight and it was delicious. Later, as it got dark, Auggie and I took our evening walk and relaxed for the rest of the night. We will leave for Moncton, New Brunswick tomorrow. We enjoyed our stay here in St. John.

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