The “Tides of the Century” a natural phenomenon that sees the tide rise higher than normal due took place 21st March 2015. Northern France along the English Channel already has some of the highest tides in the world, and when this celestial alignment occurs, it can make for an even more dramatic tidal event.
Mont St Michel Normandy
One place in particular received huge attention, thousands of people flocked to the Normandy coast to witness the stunning UNESCO world heritage site Mont Saint-Michel being cut off by exceptionally high tides. The island and its monastery lie more than half a mile offshore connected to the mainland by a narrow causeway but for that day it was cut off by the rising waters.
According to National Geographic, these “super tides” actually occur about every 19 years and the next one will be March 3 2033″. Tides are caused by the gravitational pull of the sun and moon on the Earth’s ocean. The sun, moon, and Earth all line up on the same plane, magnifying the gravitational effect. This special alignment was also responsible for the eclipse seen across parts of Europe the day before. At this point, the moon is closer to the Earth than at any other time in its monthly rotation, causing a greater gravitational effect on the ocean.
Luckily for us photographer Sabina Lorkin was at Mont St Michel to see the whole thing and take these glorious photographs…
The ‘Tides of the Century’ at the Mont St Michel – Normandy
The weather wasn’t perfect for the ‘Tide of the Century’ at sunrise on Saturday the 21st of March 2015. I got up at 5 o’clock in the morning, made a flask of hot tea set off, I live about 45 minutes away from the Mont St Michel.
To avoid the throng of people that would be on the new bridge I looked for a place where there would be less people, and left my car at a little place called Beauvoir about 3kms away and started walking in the dark (with my little headlamp) to get as close as possible.
Mont St Michel – Island for a Day
I was expecting to find another photographer or two but I didn’t expect the dozen or so that were already at the same point I’d chosen (and have now nick-named ‘Le point des photographes).
It was a misty start as the sun rose.
The light wasn’t perfect but it was great to share this rare moment with other photographers and the walkers who passed by. The Mont is now accessible by a brand new bridge that has been opened for the last few months which has improved access as part of development of the area with new parking and visitors centre.
Sabina Lorkin is a British photographer who lives in Normandy with her family. She enjoys blogging not only her wedding and portrait photos but also photos of the beautiful region she now calls home.
Find out more and view her photos at: www.anibasphotography.com