On the Victoria day weekend, 2003, I drove out that way with my brother Markus
This bridge turned out to be much more interesting than it looked like from the air! Part of the bridge, between the road and the river, is actually a wooden railway trestle!
The whole trestle seemed to have three different styles of construction for different sections. My guess is that it has been modified from when it was originally built. Surprisingly, the wooden portion of the trestle does NOT appear to be part of the original construction. Between the wooden supports of the wooden trestle, there was some concrete foundations, which the trestle did not utilize for support.
Because the bridge is very close to a village, there are some barriers to prevent you from actually walking over the bridge. These could be crawled under, or climbed around. However, we choose not to trespass, seeing that the bridge was within view of the village.
The main span is a large steel girder, on concrete pillars. Its quite high up above the river
The far end of the structure was mostly constructed from welded together I-beams. This is much more modern than the riveted trusses elsewhere. From the utilitarian style of construction, I would guess that it was built in the 60's or later, but that's only a guess. We reached the other end of the bridge by walking two kilometers along the track from another intersection. We walked that way anyway to get to another bridge on the same line that we wanted to check out.
An interesting clue about the history of the bridge was various cast iron supports that were either cut off, or didn't support anything. The pillars are made of four section riveted together cast iron to make a hollow column. I'm guessing that this was the original supports for much of the bridge. Certainly, cast iron as a material for bridges fell out of favour in the 1800's already - breing too susceptible to metal fatigue. Probably the use of heavier trains required the bridge to be upgraded, but I imagine it was upgrade in different phases at different times, based on the styles of construction.
... The bridge spanning the Teeswater River had always been a problem for the engineering staff. It is probably the first bridge was a timber trestle. This was replaced by one of the longest bridges in the province. It was almost 800 feet long. By modern standards this trestle was flimsy and weak. With the advent of heavier locomotives and heavier types of freight, reinforcement became essential.
... In the 1920's two massive concrete abutments were poured at the centre of the bridge and, in 1947, the second phase of the strengthening programme began. A third cement pier and a second huge steel span were added. The original iron framework was replaced by heavy timbers at the east end of the bridge. At the west end, fill was poured into the gorge, but the continual shifting of great masses of fill presented such a problem that a wooden pier was installed to give support to the west end. The bridge alterations were mainly completed in 1949, but as heavier freight is transported to Douglas Point, reinforcement of the bridge must keep pace. The structure is now 607 feet long.
the source for this is the Paisley Advocate, Oct. 23, 1969
He attached a few phtos. The concrete block in the third phot is to keep ATV's from driving over the bridge.