Monday, September 09, 2019

Flower Pot Island and glass bottom boats

End of season trips to tourist areas are a great way to enjoy great attractions with less hassle, you just have to hope that the weather holds up. Last year we couldn't do the glass bottom boat because the weather was just too rough for the tour boats. This year we struck gold and the weather was a perfect temperatures for hiking, traveling and boating around the end of the Niagara Escarpment. The large flower pot sits in the water in the panorama photo at top.

Blue Heron Cruises are the blue boats

We initially pushed in our kayaks at the lighthouse at Big Tub Harbour, just west of downtown Tobermory, and boated down to the wrecks at the end of the harbour - The Sweepstakes and the City of Grand Rapids lie just under the surface. In kayaks you can make out general shapes and features of the wrecks but can use under water cameras to capture some of the details.
Bruce Anchor Cruises are the yellow guys
Lucky people at the glass bottom

Later we went to the Bruce Anchor glass bottom tour boat and returned to the wrecks. First of all I was disappointed when we first got on the boat The Evolution because the glass bottom portion of the boat was pretty small compared to the area of the ship, however when they do their navigation turns at the wreck, it creates a flat portion of water which makes it look like the surface is a glass and you can see more of the wreckage. I did not have a chance to look through the glass bottom though because too many people gathered around and blocked out the views.

The ticket offices of Bruce Anchor Cruises are at dockside (61 Front Street) or at 10 Hay Bay Road just down the street. When you get your tickets you can park for free in their lot at 22 Legion Street where they have a free shuttle running back and forth to the dock. The evolution is the largest sightseeing vessel in Tobermory with room for 150 passengers with both an enclosed lower deck or on the exposed upper viewing deck. You can book online, we tried but gave up, otherwise you can visit the ticket booths in person or call and pay ahead of time. Just decide if you want to get off the boat or stay aboard, choose one of 4 boats, choose your departure and return time and book your tour. Cost was approximately $45 per adult.
Small flower pot (l) and large pot (r)

Small flower pot

After a look at Big Tub Harbour we then set out for the trip to Flower Pot Island which is within the Fathom Five National Marine Park. We paid for the drop off at the island and spent a couple hours visiting the pots along the shore, neglecting the other trails to the light station. Definitely fun to go along the trails and make your way to the beach to explore the famous flower pots, or sea stacks.
Gathering around the large flower pot

There are two large formations of rocks which remain after the surrounding areas have been eroded - they call one the large flower pot and the other is the small flower pot. Both look like they have been helped by man in restoring some of the ongoing erosion and also have erosion protection applied at the top of the stack. We can't have those babies falling over and ending the marine tourism business.

I definitely can recommend the tour and drop off option, it was a great day.

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