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article imageLake Ontario waves pounding Tommy Thompson Park Special

By Bart B. Van Bockstaele     Nov 24, 2011 in Environment
Since Toronto is well-protected from the violence of Lake Ontario by the islands in the bay and by Tommy Thompson Park, the Lake seems quite calm from downtown. However, this is quite deceptive.


Downtown Toronto is very well protected by the islands in the bay. It gets additional protection from Tommy Thompson Park, an artificial peninsula made out of landfill that has become an important destination for nature lovers. Tommy Thompson Park is still known by some as the "Leslie Spit", which is a pity since this is not its name, and it isn't a spit either.
On Wednesday 23 November 2011, there were wind gusts of up to about 40 kph in Toronto, but since downtown Toronto is so well protected few people living there get to actually see their effect on the lake. As a result, people often don't understand why protecting the Toronto islands is so important, not only from a natural heritage standpoint, but also from a safety standpoint.
The video is a bit shaky because I have no tripod heavy enough to stand up to these winds. Since I do not have a fleet of transport camels at my disposal, it is very unlikely that I will ever use such a tripod. This means I had to play bipod all by myself and had to make the clips by hand.
The camera and I got soaked shooting the clips. The camera did survive the ordeal and was as good as new after a thorough drying, but I am not entirely convinced that this is the smartest thing to do on a regular basis.
Why not make the clips and the pictures from a safe distance? Because it is not really possible. This part of Tommy Thompson Park does not have beaches, only walls that go straight down. From a distance, it looks like there are hardly any waves at all. One needs to go to the edge to make proper images.
Tommy Thompson Park is fairly close to the Toronto islands and the waves could clearly be seen pounding the Islands’ sea wall and beaches. The little white spots may seem unimpressive in the pictures, but when you know that the distance between the tip of Tommy Thompson Park and the start of the lookout pier is approximately 2.3 km according to GPS-based measurements, it should be clear that the white foam is not the result of a goldfish splashing its tail.
More about Lake ontario, Toronto, Ontario, Tommy thompson park, Canada
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