Things I Like: Bridges Big and Small

I started this post some time ago and between the chaos of preparing for Christmas and the down time that followed, this post languished … until now.

I consider myself a water-baby. I love water … I like to be on it, in it, or simply just near it.

Maybe it’s a quirk of living in Canada with our fortunate abundance of lakes, rivers, and streams but I’ve always managed to live within close proximity to a body of water.  In fact, I would consider it a hardship not to have access to a river or lake.

With water usually comes bridges – both big and small – and typically I feel a bit of excitement whenever I see one – especially if I get a chance to go over it.

BT - Black Creek (Toronto)
2013 – Bruce Trail in the Toronto Section @ Black Creek

… or walk underneath it.

Don River bridge 2
2015 – Don River Trail in Toronto

They manage to capture both my attention and my imagination whether they are simple or stunning.

London Bridge 2
2008 – London

… and when it’s possible, I’ll stop and look over the side.

Sydney Bridge
2004 – from the top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Photo by Bridge Climb Sydney.

I’ve managed to discover bridges that don’t connect to anything.  They are relics of another time, abandoned with no beginning and no ending, reminders of a usefulness that has been outlived.

Don River bridge 3
2015 – Former Eastern Ave bridge over the Don River in Toronto

I’ve also found places where a bridge – of any kind – would have been really helpful.

Bruce Trail
2013 – Bruce Trail in Blue Mountain. A wet crossing … or as Helen calls them, a Soaker.

Bridges are powerful symbols of connectivity.  They are used in engineering, architecture, technology, music – they’re everywhere .

2014 – Prague

To me, bridges are things of beauty and something I really like.


  1. My favorite bridge is the Golden Gate in San Francisco. I keep meaning to write about it. Maybe soon I will. In Portland, where i now live, there are lots of bridges! I tend to stay on the east side of the Willamette River so I try not to cross the bridges but when I do, I love them…as long as I’m not driving!


  2. Hi Joanne – I love bridges .. but I have a vested interest via my grandfather. Our Millennium bridge in London does ‘rock and roll’ as we walk over it! No – one mentioned Victoria Falls Bridge I see .. that gorge is incredible … yes the Sydney Harbour Bridge is known as the coat hanger bridge … I see I wrote about it in 2009 – they had a picnic on it.

    I saw an exhibition of bridges – the top 20 interesting ones – in the Gallery on Tower Bridge – that spans across … it was difficult to get photos of – I took some .. but I’ve yet to write the post – probably now 2 years ago or more!!

    They are wonderful structures … one has just come down in north Yorkshire that was 300 years old from the flood waters … cheers Hilary


    • I’ve heard about the terrible floods in northern England. How sad to lose a 300 year old bridge in the process.

      There are so many wonderful bridges around the world. I’ve never been to Victoria Falls. Hopefully I can correct that some day 🙂


    • Thanks for the reminder of your post on these wonderful bridges! This time the header with bouncy bridge caught my attention. Wow.

      Actually, beside the little snowy bridge was a ‘proper’ bridge with hand railings from where I took the photo. I’m still intrigued by the little arch bridge. I don’t know whether it was the original crossing or built for another purpose … nor why it was built with an arch.
      This is one part of the trail I would like to go back and revisit.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m with you when it comes to bridges. For me it started when I had to teach my grade 5 students about bridge construction. After that I had a new respect for bridges and whenever I see one I have to take a picture. Some of the most beautiful bridges that I came across were in Rotterdam, big and small, old and modern, stationary and moveable. I couldn’t get enough of them.


  4. Thanks Joanne for sharing your photographs of some of the worlds most interesting bridges. We have encountered many along the Bruce Trail and you’ve inspired me to pull out my photographs of the Bruce Trail bridges. Happy trails in 2016.


    • I didn’t realize how much nature will creep into your heart until I spent all that time on the Bruce Trail.
      On that particular ‘soaker’ day, I managed to keep my feet mostly dry …. but not only did Helen get wet, she lost her hiking pole and we had to chase it downstream. Ahhh – the adventures 🙂


      • And I bet you laughed all the way back! Too funny. I was going to say that would’ve been the time to snap a series of pix (Helen soaked chasing her pole) but then some things are better remembered than captured. I’m sure Helen would agree. LOL.


        • hahaha! I was busy snapping photos during the entire ordeal.
          I had chosen a different route to cross the stream and luckily mine was a good choice.
          It gave me the opportunity to stand back and enjoy the comedy of their crossing.
          Unfortunately the photos were not very good and mostly blurry … probably from me trying to run along with them 😉

          Liked by 1 person

  5. That’s a groovy list of bridges. I’m very partial to bridges myself. Found some great bouncy swing bridges in Nepal and Bhutan (that simply must be bounced on!). And of course there’s one in Peru that I helped to build. 🙂
    Never done the Harbour Bridge climb – what a superstar you are!


    • I can just imagine the bouncy bridges you’ve been on. Not only do you get the *bridge* experience, but also the feeling of being a daredevil at the same time 🙂

      To be honest, all three of us found the climb on the Harbour Bridge rather tame. Between the railings and the harness, there really wasn’t any daredevil-ish feeling about it … but the view was spectacular …. especially since it was only our 2nd day in Australia 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I have been to the blue ridge mountains (but not to Blue Mt.) and Toronto but would love some day to go to Australia and England. The bridge I enjoyed a lot in this post was the rushing and wild Bruce trail river. 🙂 I once wrote a post about bridges we must cross. It seems bridges are passages or journeys we take. Your post showed this wonderfully, Joanne. 🙂


    • Bridges are great metaphors for transitions. Maybe that’s what the attraction is for me … the implication of change and overcoming obstacles.

      There are so many wonderful little bridges along the Bruce. On each crossing I said a silent thank you to the hundreds of volunteers who manage the 900 km trail.


      • I think thank yous to the caretakers of the world are often forgotten. So glad I came back since now, today, Prague was my favorite picture. 🙂 Have a wonderful day, possibly you will have an “armchair adventure” while reading a book. Off to work in bitter cold here. I bet it is rather brisk where you are, too. 😦 Brr-r!

        Liked by 1 person

    • hehehe! I was thinking about you when I included that photo. I was pretty sure you would have this on your agenda 🙂

      I’ll warn you now that you will likely find the experience rather tame compared to many of the adventures you’ve had. The view however is amazing!!

      Liked by 1 person

      • What they aren’t going to let me zipline off the top? 🙂 our friends who are coming with us are not overly keen on heights so I imagine the view will be plenty enough thrill for them. Thanks for the heads up and for thinking of me. 🙂


  7. Bridges make wonderful metaphors, don’t they. like bridges that were built by hand like the one over the stream. And the arched stone bridges of an older time when the aesthetic beauty was integral to the design. Lovely post, Joanne 🙂


    • I was confident I wouldn’t be the only person who loved bridges!!
      When I first started thinking about bridges in the places I’ve lived, I didn’t give Toronto any credit for having note-worthy bridges … until I started to pay attention. I’ve decided that even the smallest of bridge has a story and/or aesthetic behind it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. These are some beauties! I’m planning a trip to NY this spring and was just telling my kids about how the D train runs over the Brooklyn Bridge. It’s so nice. You’re all stressed out being on the train and then it crosses the bridge and it just gets so peaceful.


    • Since I tend to notice bridges, it seems I do have a great collection of bridges from my travels. Unfortunately the quality of the photographic evidence doesn’t always match the splendor of my memory 😉

      After a 2 week hiatus from hiking, Helen and I are planning to be back on the trail this week and when I was writing this post, I realized that this particular bridge is not far from where we were planning to go … except in the opposite direction.
      I would consider suggesting we change our hike plan, but with snow on the ground again, it is unlikely I will get a photo much different than the original.

      Liked by 1 person

    • That little bridge over Black Creek fascinates me too. There is actually a ‘proper’ bridge nearby from where I took this photo … which leaves me puzzled about the origin of this little arch.
      Was it the original bridge? If it was, why build it with an arch? I think the mystery of this little bridge is one of its appealing qualities.


    • oooo – that is a gorgeous one, isn’t it! I particularly like the rounded columns which complement the arches so nicely 🙂

      I had never heard the expression coat-hangar to describe a bridge before, so I had to look it up. You know of course I will now be looking for more coat-hangars 😉


      • There are a couple of steel through arch bridges in New York City and a famous one in Newcastle in England. Melbourne is famous for it’s West Gate Bridge, a 2.6 km long box girder bridge, which I think is ugly. It’s dubious fame is mainly due to it collapsing in 1970, killing 35 construction workers. I must admit, as a feeder to the west, it has served its purpose very well, although it is struggling a bit these days.

        Liked by 1 person

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