Critics call it "The Bridge to Nowhere," and the Astoria-Megler Bridge in northwestern Oregon often appears as just that: a bridge snaking into a soggy fogbank, with miles of water on all sides. It spans four miles across the mouth of the Columbia near where it empties into the Pacific Ocean. The bridge connects Astoria, Oregon, to Point Ellice, Washington.
Constructed in 1966, it replaced the congested ferry system that had previously linked the communities. Despite the "Bridge to Nowhere" nickname, the Astoria-Megler Bridge has been a success. It carried a quarter-million vehicles in its first full year and was the last link in US Highway 101 connecting Mexico to Canada.
The Astoria-Megler Bridge is the world's longest continuous truss bridge. It was built to withstand some of the most treacherous conditions on the Pacific Coast. The concrete piers that support the bridge can survive wind gusts up to 150 miles per hour and raging floodwaters that can uproot trees and reach a velocity of nine miles per hour.
Continue reading to learn about the Columbia River Gorge and Multnomah Falls.
Astoria-Megler Bridge Information
Address: Warrenton-Astoria Hwy. and US-101-BR, Astoria, ORTelephone: 503/325-6311 or 800/875-6807
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