france, high tide, Intra-Muros, Saint-Malo, saint-thomas gate, storm, video
Wednesday March 9th in the morning we tried to take a walk, but it was too windy to be outdoors. So we stayed in the apartment most of the day doing housework.
Saint-Malo is noted for having the highest tides in Europe and the second highest tides in the world (an island off the east coast of Canada has the highest tides). For today, the predicted high for the tide was a coefficient value of 116. The tide coefficient range is between 20 and 120, so 116 is really high. It only gets that high 2 or 3 times a year. Also, there were several weather storm front warnings issued. The storm front would bring rain and very strong winds. The warning was to not go out on the water and stay off the beach area.
Since our apartment building is a few hundred yards from the ocean and is made of granite, we can hardly tell it’s windy unless you happen to walk by the exhaust vent in the bathroom. That is the only room you hear any wind.
It is always interesting to see the high tide. At around 7:15 pm we ventured out of the apartment. The wind at this time was 80 kph or 50 mph, very strong! I couldn’t walk against the wind. Phil had to hold onto me or I would have
been blown to the ground. We walked outside of the walls near the castle. The water was quite deep in the street. The street by the shore were barricaded and policemen were patrolling the area. Car drivers tend to try to drive through the water and the car ends up floating. The waves were crashing over the sea wall, crossing the street, and blowing up again buildings.
We walked over to Saint-Thomas gate which leads to the beach. The gate itself was barricaded to keep foolish people (like us) from getting swept way by the waves. We tried to climb the stairs there to the top of ramparts. The entrance to the stairway was blocked
by a stream of water. We walked a few yards farther to where a ramp leads to the top of the ramparts. That was a mistake! The ramp was easier to walk on, but allowed more wind and rain to blow on us. We reached the top and were holding onto a fence to keep from being blown down. Phil told me to hold onto the fence while he took some pictures (none of his pictures turned out, too much rain on the camera lens). I held onto the fence with one hand and my glasses with another. I didn’t want to loose them! We tried to walk a different route back into the city, using buildings for protection. Our glasses were drenched and needed wind shield washers. By this time we were both soaked!!! I was really out of breath from fighting the wind and we headed home with our shoes squishing from the water with each step.
Upon entering our apartment we discovered that my LL Bean long winter coat with zip out lining was NOT water proof. I’m not even sure it is water repellent. It held several pounds of water weight. No wonder I had trouble walking with the extra weight. We had hot soup to eat and didn’t do anything else that night. Quite the spectacle!
Link to short, 1 minute 10 seconds, video of the waves and the storm.