Transit to Hopewell Cape NB and Hopewell Rocks

Monday we had a 170 mile travel day from St John to Hopewell Cape…since it was a relatively short day we took our time and got underway from Rockwood Park a bit after 1000 after saying our “until next times” to Roy and Ann Brody…and it turns out they’re also heading to Hopewell Cape a couple days after us and even staying at the same campground…so we’ll see them again later on in the week.

We hopped onto NB-2…a nice 4 lane freeway…for the first 140 miles then onto NB-114 at Moncton for the last 30 miles of the transit down to the Hopewell Cape area…and pulled into the Ponderosa Pines RV Park…quickly getting checked in and assigned a site. When we got back there we noticed that the utilities were on the wrong side…and they were so far forward that we didn’t have enough hoses or extension cords to reach…so the owner who was back finishing up construction on some new sites shifted us a few sites up where we had the utilities in the right place. Still have a pretty nice view of the lake on the property…turns out the site we were originally in is normally a class A RV site and they pull in forwards rather than back in…that puts their windshield toward the water and the utilities in the right position. No worries though…there aren’t that many rigs parked here. We were originally going to go into one of the new pull through sites (probably 100 feet long)…they were supposed to be done last week but the plumbing inspector hasn’t been out yet to certify the connections for use.

We were actually pretty tired even though it was a short travel day…and it was down into the 50s by dinner time with a low 40s forecast for overnight…so Neil just made some potato, corn, bacon, venison sausage, and cheese tortellini soup for dinner…it was quite yummy and really hit the spot on a cool evening.

Tuesday we were up early for our first scheduled activity…a visit to the Hopewell Rocks located just about 3 miles from the campground. This is a series of rock formations in the Bay of Fundy that have skinny bottoms and fatter tops with trees growing on them…they’re very similar in shape and how they were eroded to the hoodoo’s that the wind and freezing rain sculpts out in the west except the erosion is done by wave action. They’re also…because they’re in the Bay of Fundy, known for it’s world highest tidal range…alternately 50 yards off shore or high and dry depending on the tide. Your $10 entry fee gets you access on two consecutive days so you can visit at both low and high tide if you prefer…which we clearly wanted to do while we were here. 

After parking and paying the entry fee there’s about a 1 kilometer walk down to the rocks…they’re called Flower Pot Rocks here…with about 200 feet of vertical descent…so over our two round trips down there we got in a hair over 3 miles of hiking.

Before heading out…Neil went out at 0540 to take some photos of the sun coming up over the marsh south of the campground…the original owner back 53 years ago bought a huge chunk of property, built some dikes in the marsh to create lakes and stocked them with fish and built himself a pretty darned nice campground.

Looking eastward from the dike just south of the rig.

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Back to the north…the rig is just out of frame to the left behind those trees.

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Looking south from the dike…this is at low tide and the bay is about 500 years away.

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Second shot taken from the same spot 6 hours later at high tide.

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Southwest along the edge of the bay.

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They even have Great Blue Herons up here.

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Closer view of the gully you can barely see in the image 2 shots back.

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After hiking down to the rocks at Hopewell Rock…this is a shot of them at high tide. We visited at about 1100 and then again at 1500 to see both tides…I’ve deliberately put some of the slides out of the order in which they were taken to illustrate the tidal range.

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And the same rocks at low tide…the small opening you can see at the bottom of the center rock in the above has become a hole large enough to drive the rig through if you could get it down to the beach. Neil looked it up on the tide tables this afternoon and the high tide was 40.7 feet and the low was 4.3…representing a 36 foot difference in just 6 hours. Further up towards the north end of the Bay of Fundy the tidal range is as much as 53 feet.

Why does the Bay have such a large tidal range when it’s connected to the Atlantic Ocean which has a much lower range? The simple explanation…just because. The longer explanation is that there are two factors at play. First is that the natural tidal resonance of the Bay based on it’s shape and contours is exactly in sync with the tidal range in the Atlantic…so like waves amplifying when they’re in resonance synchronization they increase in size. The second reason is that because the opening of the bay faces to the southwest and the islands arranged around the mouth causes a large vortex eddy outside the mouth of the bay and the eddy sucks the water level in the bay below the level in the Atlantic at low tide and conversely forces water into the bay at high tide so the bay has higher high tides and lower low tides than the ocean outside the bay.  

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An area known as the Great Cove just north of the rocks.

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And the same shot a few hours later.

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Diamond Rock up near the visitor center…high tide.

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And low tide.

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More shots from walking around on the sea bed around the base of the rocks.

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I left the person in this shot underneath the rock for a sense of scale…he’s actually standing just at the far end of the hole through the rock.

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Crack on the outside face of one of the rocks…it will probably fall down in another quarter million years or so.

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Neil went out and got a couple of shots at sunset ‘round the campground dikes.

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Looking back towards the rig…we’e parked just to the right of the one you can see there.

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Interesting things found on the net.

Alexa…remind me to feed the baby.


Go go gadget go.


Choose wisely. 



About Gunther

The full time RV travels and experiences of Gunther the Bear and Kara the Dog…along with their human staff neil and Connie.
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3 Responses to Transit to Hopewell Cape NB and Hopewell Rocks

  1. Mj Trainor says:

    Squee!! Back in Knoxvegas after recital and getting caught up! Pix are exquisite! BabySis

  2. Barbara Barnhart Pollock says:

    We loved the Hopewell Rocks. The whole coast on the Bay of Fundy is fascinating.

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