My Travel Book - The Mont-Saint-Michel - The End of the Spring Tide - September 1, 2015

A room with a view

The night seemed to fly by. We went to bed quite late and we woke up quite early. Early enough to watch from our bedroom window the tidal bore come in again. (Which probably explains why the room was so expensive after all! Watching the tidal bore from our bedroom!)

At 8:03 a.m., its emergence was so sudden and fascinating that I did not even enough time to get my camera. I drew my iPhone instead!

As soon as the tidal bore hit the bottleneck under the bridge, it turned into a torrent, just like the night before.

Yesterday evening, before “hitting the sack”, we had decided not to go up to the abbey again. My knees did hurt quite a bit and above all, Popeye had a very important conference call at 10:00 a.m. which made it rather impossible for us to go up there again and back down on time for his call.

Just fine with me. It would be very nice to walk around on the city walls and watch the rise of the flow tide right after the tidal bore. High tide would happen at 9:44 a.m. and then the waters would start ebbing very fast.

Yesterday we had missed the morning tide because of a very thick fog and heavy rains. The evening tide had been just perfect , especially the bores. But it happened at nightfall so we missed quite a lot, especially the tide at its peak.

The last part of the spring tide was to be just perfect. Sunny and beautiful weather. Not too many people either on the Mont. Most visitors wanted to stay on the bridge and watch the tide lapping the ramparts.

We were stuck on the Mont so we made the most of it. I found a very nice spot, not very far from the hotel, on a terrace. It was lovely. Right above the small platform that goes from the Mont entrance to the bridge. With an open view onto the bridge itself.

Since it was daylight, sunny and rather warm, there was a lot more bustle on the bridge and on the waters alike.

Last night we had spotted two lonely kayaks quite far away from the Mont. The morning was so lovely that quite a few kayakers had decided to embark on an incredible adventure. They were to paddle over the bores or what was left of them once they had mingled.
The water was rising terribly fast. Already reaching over the entrance of the bridge but not deep enough yet.

The first kayaker got stuck on the platform and needed a little bit of help from the firemen standing there. (They were real firemen but at the Mont, they have to be divers as well since most dangers come from the sea. And there were a lot of them around.)


It was interesting to watch the kayaker get stuck while facing some rather intense tidal flow. Since the tide rises very, very fast, he was freed very quickly and rowed away with a whole group quite intent on paddling around the Mont.

While they were crossing, the bridge looked a little bit like it was on the verge of collapsing with so many bystanders on it. It’s only some dimensional effect from being so high above the sea!

And then came the fleeting moment when the Mont-Saint-Michel became an island for less than one hour.

An island as far as wise people were concerned. Because there were many reckless people who could care less about the many safety instructions. Some did make openly fun of the firemen and chose to come back to the Mont or to leave it by foot, braving the sea not realizing that they were risking their neck. The currents are really strong and as soon as the tide starts ebbing, there is a very powerful undertow.

Luckily nothing serious happened. Some people got wet from head to toes, of course. No one fell down and no one was carried away by the flow.

We left as soon as the way was officially open. 

One last look at the abbey when we left the hotel and back onto the bridge to get into the shuttle that drove us to the parking lot.

And one last look at the Mont-Saint-Michel.

“Did you notice that there will be a 117 spring tide on the 29th of September,” said Popeye.

*Good Luck, and Good Night*

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