Story by Larry Gomes
Members of the White Mt. Ridge Runners snowmobile club and the Milan Trail Huggers ATV Club continued the rebuilding of the bridge under the RR trestle behind Valley Creek Eatery.
A total of 9 volunteers showed up on a cloudy but dry work day. The crew first stopped at the WMRR clubhouse to load 3 trailers of supplies. The crew then met up with a truck from White Mt. Lumber at the bridge site that delivered over 4 tons of decking and lumber.
The first order of business was blowing holes in the beams so a wood framework could be attached. There were also two loose beams that had to be welded together. Once the steel cooled down, the crew was able to bolt stringers and a 2" x 4" frame structure to the steel beams so that rough sawn lumber could be installed over the beams to dress them up. Towards the end of the day, the crew started to install the heavy 4" x 6" decking.
The crew put in a full day only leaving at 6:00pm because it started to rain. Many thanks to this great group of volunteers who worked together like a well oiled machine to get an excellent start on rebuilding this 78' long bridge.
Here are some pictures taken on Saturday:
Andy Thibodeau backs up the welder to the bridge so the prep work can begin.
The boom truck from
White Mt. Lumber was used to lift stacks of lumber over the fence and place it
near the east end of the bridge.
Some of the lumber was also put on Matt Godbout's heavy duty trailer so it could be backed down on the west end of the bridge.
Crew picture 1 from left, Dave Lemeire, John Higgins, Carl Bull and Eric Johnson.
Crew picture 2 - from
left: Matt Godbout, Leo Couture and Pierre Lavigne.
Using the staging set up
last week, Leo Couture starts blowing holes in the steel beams with the club
torch so the crew can install stringers.
(foreground) uses the arc welder to weld together two steel beams that had
Meanwhile Leo Couture (background) continues putting in holes for the stringers with the torch.
With the stringers and
support structure bolted into place, it was now time to nail some 1" thick rough
to cover up peeling paint and rust on the old steel beams.
Using some pump jacks, a
staging was set up to provide a work platform over the river.
With the east side of the bridge done, it was time to move the staging around to the west side of the bridge.
Here Eric and John use the staging to install some PT lumber along the lower edge of the beam.
Check the WMRR website for the next trail work day and be part of the team that rebuilds this old bridge.