Sunday, March 23, 2014

Klickitat River Bridges, Lyle WA

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I was rifling through old Columbia Gorge photos recently and found the above one, taken from Rowena Crest in the eastern Gorge, showing a pair of bridges on the Washington side of the river. I didn't initially know anything about them, and had to consult the interwebs. The map says these are bridges over the mouth of the Klickitat River, where it flows into the Columbia just west of Lyle, WA. The nearer of the two carries the Burlington Northern rail line and dates to 1908, wile the further one carries Washington highway SR 14 and dates to 1933. Both of them look a lot like bridges along the old highway on the Oregon side, but as far as I know they weren't designed or built by the same people; the concrete deck arch was just a very popular bridge design at the time.

Just west of the river (the left side of the photo) is the trailhead for the Klickitat River Trail, a 31-mile rails-to-trails conversion that follows the river upstream, then continues into a remote side canyon. The original rail line ran all the way to Goldendale; I'm not sure if they plan to ever extend the trail that far, though. I don't know that much about the trail, to be honest, and I haven't gotten around to trying it yet. Like most things, it's on the great big todo list.

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