Photo Blogging Challenge – Bridges (June 2013)

This month, our home city of Calgary experienced a “one in a thousand years” flood. Bridges have been in the news a LOT! Pretty much every road bridge across the Bow River was closed a week ago. Almost all of our road bridges have since re-opened. At the height of the flood, people were venturing out onto the lower deck of the Centre Street Bridge as the flood waters flowed over the bridge deck. They all had cameras or smartphones in hand, so I guess they were hoping to capture awesome photographs and/or videos. One of the train bridges across the Bow River failed on Thursday. Many footbridges were washed away or severely damaged during the flood. As a result, Calgary’s lauded bicycle and pedestrian pathway system is a series of disconnected bits. It will probably take years before everything is fully restored.

For those of you hoping to see some amazing photos of bridges under flood condition in this post, sorry to disappoint. As my husband likes to say, I’m “Miss Compliant” – so I diligently followed Mayor Nenshi’s request to stay home and avoid clogging up the roadways. Even yesterday, instructions were to continue to stay away from downtown Calgary. I’m thinking about doing a “before and after the big flood” series of blog posts in July, including at least one bridge, in which case I’ll include a link in my July 2013 post for this photo blogging challenge.

If you’re still with me, it’s past time I get to the substance of this month’s challenge – actual photos of bridges!

1. Gymnastics Bridge
Very occasionally, we all try our best to perform the bridge stretch as part of our warm-up for taekwondo class. So early this month I imposed on the goodwill of all my taekwondo classmates to line up and form human bridges for me to photograph. Although not quite up to the standard of Olympic gymnasts, I think they did a pretty good job!

A line of taekwondo students confirming they made the right choice, opting for martial arts over gymnastics!

2. Lego London Bridge
Three of the four GeoKs invested a fair bit of time over the February 2013 Family Day long weekend building the 1204 piece Lego London Bridge. It wasn’t a particularly complicated build, but did take quite a while because the set includes hundreds of beige 1×1 bricks, used to very good effect. All those tiny bricks provide a pretty good impression that the two towers of the 102 cm (40″) long, 45 cm (17″) high and 26 cm (10″) wide completed model look like they’re constructed of stone masonry. Set #10214 also includes 4 miniature vehicles, including a traditional red double-decker bus, visible in this photograph.

Lego set #10214 - Tower Bridge

3. Golf Cart Bridge
This bridge over Three Sisters Creek was completed before the Three Sisters Mountain Village development project went bust, back in early 2009. It’s seen very little golf cart traffic, as the 18 hole course was not even close to being finished at the time. Although a nearby golf course maintained the few finished holes through 2011, in 2012 Mother Nature started to reclaim the fairways and greens. We’re not sure whether this bridge survived the June 2013 flooding, so we plan to walk over to check it out next time we’re in Canmore.

Cart bridge over Three Sisters Creek - June 9, 2013

4. Mountain Bike Bridge
The Highline Trail above Canmore is very popular with the mountain biking community. Several hundred meters upstream from the golf cart bridge, the Highline Trail crosses Three Sisters Creek. This narrow mountain bike bridge is a replacement for a wider bridge that was washed away in the June 2012 flood. It was constructed using materials salvaged from old wooden pipes used to transport water from the small dam upstream on Three Sisters Creek to one of the small coal mining settlements in the early 20th century. Post-flood trail reports indicate that this replacement bridge was a victim of the June 2013 flooding, which means volunteers will be working to put bridge number 3 into place as soon as possible.

Highline Trail bridge over Three Sisters Creek - June 9, 2013

5. Pedestrian/Bicycle Bridge over Glenmore Dam
Mr. GeoK and I did hop on our bikes the day after the peak flooding in Calgary. We rode about 35 km (22 miles), mostly on residential streets or pathways well back from the river banks. One of our stops was near the Glenmore Dam, which is topped by a pedestrian/bicycle bridge. The bridge was closed then and remains closed today, so this was about as close as we got.

Floodwaters spilling over Glenmore Dam when the pedestrian/bicycle bridge over top was closed.

Thanks to P.J. over at a ‘lilhoohaa for hosting this monthly photo blogging challenge. Click here to see P.J.’s perspective on Bridges and to access a list of other photo blogging posts for month four of the challenge.

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13 thoughts on “Photo Blogging Challenge – Bridges (June 2013)

    • Thanks for taking a look and for the encouragement. Reminder to self – go check the challenge link list to see whether there are any more posts I should be visiting!

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    • The human bridge was a lot of fun to photograph. The students at our TKD club are a great bunch and stayed late after class to form up for me. The golf cart scene is significantly altered by the recent flooding. Should have an “after” photo up soon.

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  1. Excellent interpretations of the theme this month. The flooded dam is amazing, yet I’m drawn to the mountain scenery of the golf cart bridge.

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    • Thank you! We spent three days over the weekend exploring Canmore on bikes and on foot and I’m working on a blog post that will show the golf cart bridge after the flood. I’m pretty shocked at the changes to the landscape.

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  2. These are fantastic shots. I love the perspective of the Lego bridge, making it appear life size. I’m digging the dam as well. An impressive sight.

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  3. You’ve shown us considerable variety in and around Calgary. But you know I like the untraditional bridges the best. That first pic is amazing and I love the LEGO bridge.

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    • Lego continues to be a great excuse for family time, even now that both our boys are teens.

      As for the human bridge – I’m glad I was wielding the camera and didn’t form part of the line-up! My back isn’t as bendy as those younger ones!

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    • I was really happy with how that one turned out. There was just the right mix of sun and clouds, I think.

      I am so curious to know whether this bridge is still standing after the big flood in Canmore…hoping to find out later this week.

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  4. I’m really impressed with both your creative thinking — the human bridge is terrific — and the quality of your photos. Really nice work.

    Sorry to hear about all the flooding. Calgary is very much like Denver, where I live, but it’s dry here. Too dry, actually.

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    • My fellow students at the dojang were really good sports about making the human bridge. And thanks for the positive feedback on this month’s photo set. I’m really enjoying honing my photography skills, especially learning about how best to incorporate intentional camera movement.

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