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John A. Weeks III
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Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography
US-8 Bridge
US-8 Saint Croix River Crossing
Taylors Falls, MN

US-8 Bridge

• Structure ID: NBI: 6566 (MN), B48000300000000 (WI).
• Location: River Mile 53.0.
• River Elevation: 695 Feet.
• Highway: US-8
• Daily Traffic Count: 10,000 (2001).
• Bridge Type: Steel Girder.
• Length: 405 Feet.
• Width: 48 Feet, 4 Traffic Lanes.
• Navigation Channel Width: Non-Navigable.
• Height Above Water: 57 Feet.
• Date Built: 1955, Rebuilt 1986.
US-8 is the major highway that runs east and west across northern Wisconsin. On the Minnesota side of the border, US-8 and US-61 were once the key routes feeding the Twin Cities from the north. That role is now handled by I-35.

US-8 crosses the Saint Croix river at an interesting spot. It is the very north end of the Saint Croix Dalles area, a spot where the river has cut a deep channel through a stretch of very hard rock. Most of this channel was cut when glacial Lake Duluth emptied. This left a deep gorge for the river to flow through. It also resulted in a very narrow but very deep river. The Saint Croix often runs 70 feet deep in this area, with pools that are over 100 feet deep.

The US-8 bridge is a somewhat uncommon steel girder design. It isn't that steel girder bridges are uncommon, it is that they are rare in Minnesota. The state Department of Transportation greatly prefers to use pre-stressed concrete girders. The use of steel does add some interesting features and color under the bridge. That really adds to the appeal of an otherwise uninteresting bridge located in a very interesting and scenic location.

The photo above is a view looking towards the Wisconsin side of the river crossing from mid-span on the north side of the US-8 Bridge.


US-8 Bridge
The next 4 photos are views of the bridge as seen while walking on the trail that passes under the west end of the structure. The photo above is the south face of the bridge as seen from the bridge deck level. The photo below is the same view, but seen from the observation deck approximately 20 feet below the bridge deck.

US-8 Bridge
US-8 Bridge
These two photos are the final two of a four picture series showing a walk on the trail under the west end of the US-8 Bridge. The photo above is a view from directly under the bridge. The photo below is the north face of the bridge.

US-8 Bridge
US-8 Bridge
These two photos are views of the bridge deck looking to the east towards Wisconsin from the sidewalk on the south side of the structure. The photo above is from the west end of the bridge taken during early early spring, while the photo below is from mid-span taken in late summer.

US-8 Bridge
US-8 Bridge
The photo above is the view from an overlook on the west bank of the Saint Croix River located just downstream of the bridge. The photo below is the bridge plate on the Minnesota side of the structure.

US-8 Bridge

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