Building a bridge—a durable bridge—across the flood-prone Satsop River entailed building it much higher than the author originally planned.
The Damerons had to make two attempts at building a bridge. The second had plenty of clearance above the river..
PHOTO: STEVE BRADLEY
U-shaped steel rod hangers—salvaged for free from old silos and bent to shape by a neighborhood black-smith—hang from the bridge's "suspenders" and under-prop the middle and ends of each 16-foot creosoted board.
The bridge's cables are anchored in the ground by cedar logs buried four feet deep (the lines on the other side of the river are set in concrete). Treated posts hold the cables and the bridge well above the unpredictable torrent that ruined the Dameron's first river spanner.
The cables lie on meal brackets to keep them from cutting down into the posts or rolling to either side. The clamps have to be the proper size—in Jim's case, 3/4"—to properly cradle the steel lines.