Roll up Magnetic Hill

Uphill never looked so upside down

If I told you there was a mysterious hill outside of Moncton where you can put your car in neutral and it will roll uphill, would you believe me?

Magnetic Hill has been one of New Brunswick’s most popular attractions since the 1930s, a freak of nature that boggles the mind. Once part of the provincial highway, the 1.5-kilometre-long antigravity stretch in question was preserved and today is a quirky roadside attraction adjacent to a popular water park and the largest zoo in Atlantic Canada.

I admit I had my doubts when I paid the five bucks and drove to the bottom of the hill. Yet no sooner had I put the rental car in neutral than, slap-me-with-a-wet-cod, the damn wheels started rolling upward. The illusion is caused by the unusual contours of the surrounding landscape and the lack of a horizon, giving the impression that the car is rolling uphill — as if pulled toward a magnet — when in fact it is rolling downhill. It is called a gravity hill, and there are nearly a dozen of them in Canada alone, Magnetic Hill being the most famous.

Isaac Newton may still be resting easy in his grave, but all the science in the world can’t wipe away the wonderfully cool feeling that you’re actually sliding uphill.

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