Saturday, November 13, 2010

Another Piece of History is gone

In the mid 1990s I used to windsurf a lot. Often I would participate in the annual Milacs Lake crossing. That particular crossing race in September of 1997 turned out to be a windless one and the Saturday morning race was postponed until the next day. Looking for something to do we saw an advertisement for a lake lot for sale on Crow Wing 11. What the heck lets go look!
So we soon found ourselves on what would soon become our lake place on Crow Wing 11
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From the shoreline, across the bay we could see the neatest old trestle bridge! This was the first time we saw the Akeley trestle bridge. While it certainly wasn’t the only reason, the view of the trestle bridge was a contributing factor to why we thought the lot was cool and ultimately bought it.
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We even walked down the bike trail to see the trestle bridge.
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Up close the bridge was high and very cool!
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The trestle was built over a hundred years ago so the trains could haul the logs harvested in the nearby forests to the sawmills. Akeley was a booming community in those days. Not so much today.
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Over the century the once strong bridge that carried tons of logs over the Crow Wing River has become old and tired and only carried bicycles across the river recently.
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One day in the fall of 2010 across the lake we could see a crane working on the trestle.
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A exploration trek down the trail reveled that the crane wasn’t repairing the bridge but replacing it. Blasphemy! The cool old trestle bridge that had stood for soon long and made the view across the lake so unique was no more!



Replaced in a couple of weeks with a much lower new iron structure with a much higher load carrying capacity, but missing any history.
Margaret tried to put the old one back, but couldn't get in the crane.

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We can’t see the new bridge from the shoreline anymore its too low. Our view from the shore is no longer the same, but nothing ever stays the same. And that’s probably a good thing.
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