News.bytes Extra, issue 450
ARRA funds restore river crossing on Bizz Johnson Trail
A project funded by the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) is restoring an historic icon on the Bizz Johnson National Recreation Trail in Lassen County. Work is nearing completion on the $1.6 million undertaking to restore a 1913-era railroad trestle that provides a dramatic Susan River crossing for hikers, bicyclists runners and equestrians who use the scenic trail. The trestle's eastern end, a wooden structure, was destroyed by wildfire in July 2000 and funding for repairs had not been available until the enactment of ARRA.
On Tuesday, Sept. 21, a major milestone was accomplished when an 85-foot-long steel girder was hoisted into place and secured, linking the main trestle to the anchor point when the wooden supports once stood.
Prior to the fire, the trestle was a high point, literally, for Bizz Johnson visitors such as this cyclist. The 270-foot-long bridge crosses the river at a height of 70 feet.
For 10 years the trestle could not be used. Recreation visitors used a trail detour and a historic highway bridge to cross the Susan River.
A major first step in restoration was encasing the bridge in plastic sheeting to capture the old paint that was sandblasted away. The old part of the bridge was repainted.
With the new girder in place the restored trestle is taking shape. Decking and railing installation is underway.
The restored bridge will be re-opened in time for the annual Bizz Johnson Marathon set for Saturday, Oct. 9.
- Jeff Fontana, BLM Northern California District, 9/27/10
BLM-California News.bytes, issue 450