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John A. Weeks III
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Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography
Swinging Bridge (2013 Structure)
Saint Louis River Pedestrian Crossing
Thomson, MN

• Structure ID: N/A
• Location: River Mile 26.8
• River Elevation: 895 Feet
• Bridge Type: Steel Cable Suspended Deck
• Bridge Length: 200 Feet, 126 Foot Longest Span (Estimated)
• Bridge Width: 4 Feet
• Navigation Channel Width: Non-Navigable
• Height Above Water: 24 Feet
• Date Built: Opened November 1, 2013
Coming soon...

Disaster struck the Duluth area in late June, 2012. A week of rain saturated the ground. Then a slow moving storm stalled over the Twin Ports area and dumped in excess of 11 inches of rain on the evening of June 19, 2012 and June 20, 2012. The ground could not absorb any more water, so it ran off into rivers and streams very quickly creating a flash flood of historic proportions. The Thomson Dam overtopped sending flood waters into the city of Thomson, severely damaging the Munger Trail, and causing serious damage to Jay Cooke State Park. The Forbay Canal failed causing the Saint Louis River to carve a new river channel through the park just below the Visitor Center. Once the hydro project was shut down, the flood water was diverted into the main river channel causing it to rise to its highest level in recorded history. The water was 5 feet over the top of the Swinging Bridge. While the main span held, the deck was mostly gone, the rock towers were damaged, and the approach span was mangled. The bridge was a total loss. It was replaced with a new structure using the repaired rock towers, opening on November 1, 2013.


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