Reversing Rapids

The Reversing Rapids is a unique phenomenon created by the collision of the Bay of Fundy's monstrous tides and the mighty St. John River. 

At low tide, the St. John River, which runs for 724 km (450 mi.) through New Brunswick, empties into the Bay through a narrow rocky gorge. Near Fallsview Park, an underwater ledge 11 m (36 ft.) below the surface causes a series of rapids and whirlpools. At this point the tidal waters are 4.4 m (14.5 ft.) lower than the river level. As the Bay tides begin to rise they slow the river current to a stop and for 20 minutes a rest period called slack tide allows boats to navigate the rapids. The Bay's tides continue to rise, their powerful force gradually reversing the flow of the river and the rapids begin to form again, reaching their peak at high tide. The water rises up to 4.4 m (14.5 ft.) higher than the river. 

After high tide the Bay's tides slowly descend until they are at river level again, resulting in another slack tide. A complete high-tide/low tide cycle occurs about every 12.5 hours, with the tides rising to 8.5 m (28.5 ft.).

It is recommended to view the rapids twice; near low tide and near high tide. View this wonder from 2 vantage points - the Falls Restaurant observation deck and Fallsview Park.

Complete your visit with a trip across a zip line or a harbour sightseeing tour.

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