musings while allatsea

Musings of a curious individual

A Bridge Too Far. Rangeview. 13-10-2011

I am a sucker for a bridge. I am always fascinated by these structures and their beauty. I am fortunate in having seen quite a few famous ones oversees, including Tower Bridge in London, The Brooklyn Bridge in New York, The Rhoebling Bridge in Cincinnati,  Tsing Ma Bridge in Hong Kong, The Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol,  The Mythe Bridge in Tewkesbury and a few others which, while not important, are just as beautiful. Suspension bridges are my favourite though, but in JHB we don’t really have a lot of them. The most famous bridge in Johannesburg is probably the Nelson Mandela Bridge that spans the railway yards in Braamfontein. 
 
Nelson Mandela Bridge.

Nelson Mandela Bridge.

 
A relative newcomer is the pedestrian bridge up in Fairlands that crosses the highway, it’s a glorious structure that sticks out from very far, and its almost art deco styling just makes it a beaut in my eyes. It is one of those structures that many motorists pass under on their way between Beyers Naude and 14th Ave, but how many have actually walked on that bridge?

I made discovery number 3 this morning while out at Sterkfontein Cemetery in Krugersdorp. I spotted it at the extreme of my zoom and was instantly hooked. I just had to see this bridge up close!

Of course finding it was another story altogether, because its really a pipe bridge and not a pedestrian bridge it doesn’t really show up on maps, and no real roads actually go out that way. But I drove around as close to it as I could get before I spotted a sign that advertised bungee jumping! Then it was just a matter of following the arrows.

After a long walk in some amazing scenery I finally reached my target, and realistically it is really just two pipes in a triangular frame suspended and supported by an upright on either side. However, its got an appealing industrial look about that I liked. I took a tentative walk up to its central gangway, but I am afraid I did not really feel too comfortable there. The ground below has a stream running through it as well as the bungee platform, but I am not really bungee material so didn’t venture out all the way. Besides, I was here to see the bridge, not jump off it! 

 
Then it was time to head off home once again, my mind taking me to events that became known as the Jameson Raid. I do not know whether Jameson and his party passed through this area, or even whether any ABW action took place around here, but the it is pretty rough terrain on the Sterkfontein side of that bridge, and probably very unchanged from 1900. All I know is, it is not the sort of place I would like to tackle, it was hard enough walking up the hill to get back to my car!  
 
 
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