Sunday, June 9, 2013

High Shoals Bridge Construction Begins

What do you do when you need to cross the river? Wade, rock hop, or make a bridge.
This time, we will build a bridge. This is the trail crossing on High Shoals Creek. Today, it does not look too difficult to cross. But after torrential rains, the water rises two to three feet deep. Rushing waters clear the rock to the right to the height of the ferns and to the left as far back as the orange flagging. Under high water, this creek is dangerous and can not be crossed.
 So let the work begin. First a marker is placed at the location for the crossing.
 A short, unnoticeable access point is cleared for the track hoe to get from the parkway to the work site.
 This is the track hoe that Larry Hampton has brought onto the site to work with.
The hole for the footer has been dug. You can see the abutment cut and the wings to the sides of the center.
A simple foot bridge is installed so workers may cross the creek without soiling the water.
The hole for the footer is dug on the opposing side of the creek.
 On the east side a boulder was discovered in the location of the footer. Holes were drilled into the rock and rebar was set horizontally to tie the footer successfully to the boulder when cast.
 This is the business end of Larry Hamptons machine, a bucket with a claw.
 First the concrete was poured for the east side footer.
 The rebar is set deep into the concrete and will be embedded in the second pouring
 The west side is poured next.
The footer is set, the abuttment and wings will be built upon the footer.
Just in case you didn't notice, the trail is closed through this construction site!
Thank you for your safety and patience as we continue this project.

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