Sept 11 Over the bridge

Written Sept 12

View of the bridge from the path

View of the bridge from the path

On June 16 this year the brand new Golden Ears Bridge opened in the Vancouver area. It is on the boarder of Pitt Meadow and Maple Ridge and goes across the Fraser River to Langley. It is an electronic toll bridge so like the 407 in the Toronto area, you just need to drive across and your license is read so you can be billed. I haven’t driven across it but have seen it from a distance and it looks beautiful. I decided that I wanted to hike across it. I thought that the view from up there most be great although you can never see the view from a car going over a bridge.

View over the airport

View over the airport

It took me a while to get ready for this walk/hike. Hiking in the city has its own hazards, not bears. I started at the information centre to find out the route that I should take. That was harder than I thought because it is so new that it doesn’t show on any maps and of course many roads have been altered to accommodate the bridge. Although both my uncle and the centre worker were helpful, their explanations of where I should go was not at all clear to me. What I knew was that I would need three to four hours and I didn’t want to hit rush hour or dark which comes before 8pm these days.

Path through the woods

Path through the woods

Yesterday the day was sunny and bright. I was busy all morning but thought I could go in the afternoon. I wore sunscreen and a hat. When I got outside I realized that it was much warmer than I had expected. I decided that I would go back if it got too hot and go early on a weekend morning. It was hot but I walked past the airport and watched small planes and parachutists over the yard so the path was interesting. I was walking along a marked bike and walking path which left the road and headed though a narrow band off forest that followed the Fraser River. That was fabulous. I could watch logs making their way down the river from the shade of some beautiful trees.

No sidewalks - the most dangerous part of my trip so far

No sidewalks - the most dangerous part of my trip so far

I suddenly came to an area where the path and I didn’t want to go the same way. I was standing close to the bridge and could see it but could not figure out how to get to the foot path that crosses. Stand and look confused for any length of time and someone will gladly step up and tell you where to go. I actually had to leave the path and walk along the roadside bike path which was a little scary but it wasn’t far. By now I was out of the shade and in the bright sun but the bridge was right there so I was energized by the sight of it.

The path across the bridge

The path across the bridge

I didn’t actually cross the bridge. I walked up to the middle which took me about 15 minutes. I took pictures and appreciated the view but realized that I was getting very late and I had not really told any one where I was going.

Sculpture on the top

Sculpture on the top

Bridges of this scale are fascinating. Standing in awe looking at the construction elements I have to think that if we (human kind) can do something like this we should be able to accomplish anything. I guess where there is a will there is a way. Check out this website to see more about Golden Ears.

Up there

Up there

The river from the top

The river from the top

The beauty of the it

The beauty of the it

Me enjoying the view

Me enjoying the view

Walking back

Walking back

Since I was pressed for time I took a much more direct route and didn’t go along the river. It took me 3/4 or an hour to get home walking rather briskly. It took me 2 hours to find my way there. Urban hiking is very different than hiking the wilderness and even in an area that is very aware of cyclists and pedestrians, it still felt like I was trespassing on areas that were reserved just for cars. Still, quite an adventure that left me panting for more. Look out Fred, we are going hiking.

I did it

I did it

Talk soon.

One Response to Sept 11 Over the bridge

  • Janice Turner says:

    Hey Vicki
    I’m thinking your hair looks about the same colour as your hat.
    Glad to hear you made it back alive after your urban hike.
    You’re looking great!
    Janice

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